Presets – Edge Lightening

If your first thought was “Edge Lightening?”, you’re not alone. Lately, the hip, cool, trendy, rad (insert your hip, cool, or trendy-like word here) is darkening the edges of your photos. Normally, I think it’s a great addition when used sparingly. Well, I started experimenting with the reverse – lightening the edges and the effect started looking really cool on some photos. Usually, darkening the edges brings focus on the center of the photo (usually the subject). However, lightening them does close to the same thing but in a different way. I found it gives the photo a really “bright” feel to it. So I’ve come up with a few presets here that go from lightening the edges a little to a lot. There’s also 2 flavors – narrow and wide. You’ll see the difference when you try ‘em out. They work great on portraits, wedding photos, and even some landscapes I tried them out on. Have fun!

Click here to see a sample of the preset.
Click here to download Matt’s Edge Lightening Presets
Click here to see a video on how to install presets.

Author: Matt K

Matt is a full time Education Director for the NAPP and Kelby Training. He's a best-selling author of various books on Photoshop and Photography co-hosts the live weekly photography talk show "The Grid" and is co-host of "Photoshop User TV". In his spare time he practices as a 1st degree black belt in Taekwondo and enjoys spending time with his family in Tampa, FL.

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10 Comments

  1. These presets are so cool however when I download them they are in a Zip file and I am having a hard time opening them as a zip file. Any ideas out there? Matt your presets look cool and I would love to put them in my Lightroom program. Can you or anyone out there in Lightroom help me with this? Thanks and keep up the great work.

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  2. Cool Matt. I always like working with edges vignettes. I’m with you. Usually I use dark ones to draw the eye, but a light one at the right time can be cool.

    I find they should be used sparingly compared to a darker edge, but who knows. It might be the next trend.

    Gavin Seim

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  3. Funny enough I created the same presets for myself awhile ago when trying new things by doing the inverse of usual habits.

    When it works, it really works and makes the photo pop

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  4. Great, Matt.
    I created almost the same preset too.
    Thanks very much for your great work.

    Bruno Thomaz

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  5. I love taking a look here every morning, thanks.
    I have had lightroom since its release. And, recently purchased element 6. I have your book with Scott Kelby. But, having never worked in elements before, I am having a hard time grasping the concept. Is there a book you coul reccoment for total newbies like me? Additionally, I am trying to creat the watermark, and following instructions. Was there a step skipped? From step One to step Two?
    Again, thank you for your tips and videos, I enjoy them so much.

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  6. Hey Matt,

    Keep them coming.

    One thing people may want to keep in mine is that if you cropped the image you may remove part of the effect.

    One way around is to crop in Ps and then import back into Lr then apply preset as needed.

    Shouldn’t be a problem with Lr 2.0 from what I have read due to the application of vignetting on cropped images.

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  7. Hey Matt,

    Two words: LOVE IT! Thanks for continuing to provide these amazing free presets every week, they do wonders to enhance my photos.

    Still haven’t seen you on Twitter, can’t wait to see you there.

    -K

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  8. Hey Matt,

    Thanks for sharing these nice preset and so useful tips!!! :-D

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