Engagement + Wedding Workflow
There's so much more to engagements and weddings than the actual sessions. One hour of shooting may equal 2-3 hours post work. In the age of digital photography, your workflow or the editing process is just as important as the time spent taking the photos.
I prefer to have my white balance and exposure correct in camera. Now- it's not always the case to have it perfect in camera, so I will fix it in the editing stage. As an artist, editing allows me to make the images my own.
Recently I came across www.SleekLens.com and their Forever Thine wedding workflow + adjustment brushes. I typically don't use presets any more as I have developed my own style and like the creative freedom that hand editing provides. However, I’m always open to try something new and so I decided to give them a try. I found a few favorites that I liked from the collection. I used them in editing a recent session of a Mr. & Mrs. session in St. Cloud, Florida. I was lucky enough to have been the assistant photographer at their wedding a few months prior, I assisted the awesome Lauren, of Lauren K Downing Photography.
The collection is HUGE. It features All In One Presets, Bases, Exposures, Color Correct, Tone/Tint, Polish, Vignettes, Wedding Film, Wedding Fashion, Wedding Matte, Wedding Vintage, and Wedding Black & Whites. The combinations are endless. You can truly have a look that suits every style and create something unique.
With any preset, I apply it and then transform it to make it my own. The "Best Man" all in one preset compliments my editing style. I adjusted my highlights, blacks (I like them dark, around -30), clarity (around +12) and I always tweaked my greens. I like my greens more muted and slightly darker.
NOW- when it comes to b&w I LOVE the “Stardust” preset. It taught me how to transform my photos. Yes, a preset taught me something. When I use presets I look at all the adjustments and levels so I can understand how to do it myself. This preset is great and offers dark blacks, creamy shadows, good contrast and an antique silver tone. Perfection! I use this trick all the time now!
The brushes have got to be my favorite brushes I have ever come across in Lightroom. I have not stopped using them. I like the eye enhancer to give eyes that extra pop (just be cautious of the whites of the eyes, too much and the eyes POP. The skin smoother is powerful, set at about 60-70 gives just the right smoothness for women. For extra difficult skin, full power is great. For men I usually set it around 20-50 and below. The teeth whitening brush is great but too powerful at full force, I would recommend using it at around 20. (Now all these setting recommendations are for RAW images, jpeg values are different in Lightroom).
Any photographer looking for some great wedding presets, this collection is a great place to start. Check out the other presets, there a TON of great ones to choose from. You will learn how to manipulate your images by studying the settings and save a lot of time in your post workflow. Happy Editing.