Updated for 2021 – If you’ve ever spent any time editing your travel photos you’ll know exactly how time consuming it can be. I’m sure you might have wondered if there was an easier and quicker way to get your photos looking amazing. That’s where free Lightroom mobile presets come in!
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Lightroom presets are an extremely powerful tool that can be used in Adobe’s photo editing program, Lightroom. If you’ve never heard of Lightroom presets before don’t worry, I will explain all about them next.
I will explain what they are exactly and how to install and use them in Lightroom mobile. After that, I will share my selection of the best free Lightroom mobile presets that you can download for yourself.
What Are Lightroom Presets?
So what exactly are Lightroom presets or, more specifically, what are Lightroom mobile presets?
A preset is a function in Lightroom and the Lightroom mobile app that allows you to apply a group of adjustments to your photos with just one click of a button.
These adjustments can affect and change certain aspects such as the exposure, tone and colour of your photos. You can think of them as pre-made edits waiting to be applied to your travel imagery.
Presets can offer a lot of benefits for you when editing your images, for instance it can massively speed up your workflow.
With mobile presets you can achieve beautifully edited images in no time whatsoever. As well as this, presets can help you to create consistency in your travel photos. This can be really helpful, especially if you’re wanting to post your images online on sites like Instagram.
A lot of photographers and Instagram influencers nowadays offer their Lightroom presets as products you can buy online. They do this so that you can achieve beautiful edited photos just like theirs, but quite often these presets can be a bit pricey.
Luckily though there are lots of free alternatives out there for you to download. But before I get to that, I’ll show you how to actually install and use them on your mobile…
How To Install And Use Mobile Presets
It’s an extremely easy process to install and use presets on your mobile device.
First of all you need to get the DNG files downloaded to your phone or tablet. You can either download the preset files using a computer and then send them to your mobile device or you can download the files straight to your phone or tablet.
If you are downloading straight to your device you will need a way to unzip the files. I use Unzip which is a free app found in the app store.
After you have unzipped the DNG files on your mobile device, open up the Lightroom app and create a new album to import your presets into.
You now want to add your DNG file into the new album. Press Add Photos in the bottom right corner and find where your DNG file is saved, you can then import it into Lightroom mobile.
Now the DNG files have been imported you need to create the actual preset in Lightroom, this is very easy. Click on the preset you have in your new album to open it.
In the top right corner you should see three dots, click on them. This will open a drop down menu, click on Create Preset.
A dialog box will pop up, in here you can choose a name for your preset, select a preset group and the edits that are included in the preset.
For the Preset Group I would keep it as User Presets and I would keep all the tick boxes selected except for Tools, Optics and Geometry. Then you can click on the tick in the top right corner to save the preset.
Your preset is now ready to be used on any photo you want.
Simply find a photo to edit, click the two overlapping circles on the right hand side tool panel and find the preset that you saved. Click on the preset and then select Done. Congrats! You’ve now mastered how to install and use presets in the Lightroom mobile app.
The Best Free Lightroom Mobile Presets For Your Travel Photography
Below you will find some of the best free Lightroom mobile presets that you can use to make your travel images really come to life.
With each preset you will see a comparison of a before image, and one after the preset has been applied. This will give you a good idea of how these presets can help elevate your own photos.
1. Insta Blogger
The Insta Blogger preset is available for a free download from creativetacos.com. You can find lots of freebies on their site including presets, Photoshop actions and Photoshop brushes.
The Insta Blogger preset helps you create a bright and airy feel in your travel photos. As well as the bright feel created in your images, you’ll notice a lot of changes to the colours and tone of your photos.
With the use of split toning and the hue, saturation and luminance sliders you can really give your travel photos that dreamy Instagram feel.
URL for link to preset: https://creativetacos.com/insta-blogger-lightroom-preset/
Miami is one of my favourite free Lightroom mobile presets, you can find it on creativetacos.com.
This is a great preset to use if you’re looking for a faded de-saturated look in your travel imagery. You’ll notice from the example that although the landscape and sky look very de-saturated, the person’s skin tone doesn’t look faded.
This is because a lot of the adjustments are only affecting the greens and yellows in the image. This means that if you have any people in your photos their skin doesn’t come out looking too weird.
URL for link to preset: https://creativetacos.com/miami-lightroom-preset/
If you’re looking to make your travel photos a lot more interesting, you can do this by introducing a bit of contrast and tone to your images. This can be done perfectly with Signal, a preset that is available to download from The Photographers Passport.
Signal adds adjustments to your images that help even out the exposure and adjusts certain colours to help achieve images that really stand out.
If your images have yellows, greens and blues in them then this preset will work very well for you. You can find the download for this preset by following this link.
URL for link to preset: https://lp.constantcontact.com/su/hi9mUJ3/presets
Maldives is a preset created by creativetacos.com, you’ll notice a few of their presets on this list as they have such a great selection.
As you can probably tell from the name, this preset works perfectly on the sort of photos you’re likely to take in the Maldives, I’m thinking lots of beach photos!
It can work really well on all of your travel imagery though, as you can see in the example.
Many adjustments have been made in this preset, including many aspects such as the exposure and white balance. The biggest changes you’ll find with this preset involve the colours in the image.
Almost all the colours on the Hue, Saturation and Luminance slider have been de-saturated and with the use of split toning, blue has been added into the shadows of the image, giving it a cold feel. If you like what you see with this preset you can download it using the following link.
URL for link to preset: https://creativetacos.com/maldives-lightroom-preset/
If you’re not looking to adjust your images too drastically but still would like to add a few finishing touches, then Dreaming could be the preset for you.
This preset works perfectly for all types of travel imagery and works particularly well with images taken on a bright sunny day.
With Dreaming you can expect to see adjustments to the exposure, particularly with the shadows and blacks in your photos.
You’ll notice also, adjustments to many of the colours in your photos, especially to the blues, yellows and greens. You can download this preset for free by following this link.
URL for link to preset: https://lp.constantcontact.com/su/hi9mUJ3/presets
Adventure has been created specifically to be used with all your adventure and travel images. With Adventure you can create a unique and interesting edit on your photos in a matter of seconds.
If you are looking for a slightly faded or de-saturated feel in your travel photos then this preset could be what you’re looking for. You can get a free download of this preset by following this link.
URL for link to preset: https://creativetacos.com/adventure-lightroom-preset/
The final preset on this list is from freepresets.com which has a vast selection of both mobile and desktop presets. This preset is another one that creates a subtle edit to your travel photos.
With the use of the tone curve you get a faded feel in the darker areas of your photos, you’ll notice this particularly in the blacks. As well as this you’ll notice a warm orange tone added to the shadows of your photos, this is thanks to the use of split toning.
This is another great free preset, why not try it out for yourself to see if it works with your photos. You can find the preset for download here.
URL for link to preset: https://www.freepresets.com/product/free-mobile-dng-preset-filterlook/
Final Thoughts On Free Lightroom Mobile Presets
Free Lightroom mobile presets can be an extremely useful tool for your travel photography.
As well as speeding up the process of editing, it can also help you to achieve better results with your travel photography.
One thing I will say though is that these presets are not likely to work with every single photo. Some presets will work better with some photos than others. Try to keep this in mind and don’t be afraid to make your own adjustments as well.
These presets work extremely well at speeding up the process of editing and correcting any errors in your photography. With a bit of fine-tuning, you can create some breathtaking travel photography with them.
Jonny is a photographer from the UK who believes he can make the world a better place — one photo at a time. He is constantly on the lookout for new places to photograph, new people to meet and new adventures to keep the blood pumping. You can find him over at The Photographers Passport.