“Your B+W photos are so stunning! I was blown away by your Rifflandia post on your site. Do you have more than one preset for them? I find that I like my preset on some of my photos but on others they don't look quite as good.”

Thanks Allison! Such a great thing to hear. :) I developed a nice Black and White preset which I applied to all of the photographs. Maybe 2 of the 150 images were instantly great. 

Thing is, presets eliminate a lot of the time it would take to edit a batch, but they are definitely not the be all end all of every photo. Each image has an entirely different tonal range, with the subject in completely different quadrants on the histogram. Ultimately, a preset will work great for all pictures with a very similar tonal structure to the one that the preset was developed on.

I had to customize the tone curve and do a good amount of exposure/black/white/shadows/highlight control on all of the images. Quite honestly, that is where most of the work goes into.

So yeah, develop a preset that is a good general base for all of your images, and then adjust the edit to each specific picture!  I wish a preset existed that was perfect for every single picture. Not every single picture is exactly the same though. O.o 


“Hi Brian! My friends and I are big fans of you work. I was wondering if you use VSCO film? And if you do, would you recommend it?”

Hey Liam!

It makes me feel so great to hear that. ^^ I do use VSCO film, but I’ve heavily altered the presets. It took me a few weeks to gather up the courage to get the presets, in fear of looking like everyone else. In the end, you can use them to create a more unique look and increase your work flow ten fold. I’m at a point where I spend a lot of time editing, and what I really love to do is shoot. VSCO helps you manage that work flow a little better.

Their B&W presets are great, but I still use my own for that. In the end, my editing style is very similar to VSCO. It took me a long time to learn how to achieve the film look, but I definitely think it was well worth the hard work. I taught me so much about lightroom and gave me the knowledge to really understand how the VSCO presets work. With that, I’ve been able to really make them my own.

I’d definitely recommend buying them. I’d also recommend brushing up on your knowledge of LR too, as it will help you to take full advantage of the presets. After all, they’re just a starting point.