Presets – Contrast Boost

Here’s another set of presets right from my personal workflow. They’re all contrast-boosting presets (there are 5 of them). I use the Tone Curve to add contrast to my photos. I used to just click on the Point Curve options at the bottom of the Tone Curve panel (Linear, Medium Contrast, Strong Contrast) to see which one I liked the best. Finally I just created some presets for them, as well as a couple other settings, because I found the difference between the 3 was a bit too broad. So now they’re yours for the taking. The “0” preset is a flat Tone Curve while the “4” one is fairly steep and the largest contrast boost out of all of them. What’s nice about these is that once they are installed you can just hover over them in the Develop module and see the preview in the Navigator panel so you don’t even need to click on them to apply. Have fun with ’em!

Click here to download Matt’s Contrast Boost presets
Click here to see a video on how to install presets


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  1. Matt, thank you!
    I find myself using these presets more and more. Seems that my original pics are a bit dull and my eyes are pleased when a bit of contrast is added in the mix.

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  2. To everyone who said “Thanks”. You’re very welcome!

    Peter – Most of the presets rely on you developing the photo first and then adding the preset to it. Some of them adjust things like exposure because the effect usually calls for it. No real “rule” for them though. I apply them and if it looks cool I stick with it. If not, I tweak it.

    Shavox and Mike Clemons – make sure you’re in the correct module. Print module = print preset, etc…

    GregH – Probably won’t find one. The Orton effect revolves around having two exposures. 1 in focus and 1 out of focus and blending them together. You can’t blend two photos in Lightroom so you really wouldn’t be able to reproduce the effect. It’s more of a Photoshop effect.

    Thom – Thanks :)

    Matt K

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  3. Matt, loving the presets, when I try to import a few of the different ones I get an error telling me it’s the wrong type of preset.. the one that comes to mind is the print preset. Do I need to load those in a different place?



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  4. Matt

    These are great, and when used with the lens vignetting ones the photos look really good. How about i take photos, and you just come to my house an process them for me.. Thanks for all the help the work that you do to help us out. While you are doing preset, what do you have that might be of interest to all of us for printing??

    Thanks again.

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  5. Hi Matt

    All the presets you post are great! Do you have one, or know of one, that resembles the Orton Effect that can be used in Lightroom?


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  6. Matt,

    I solved my problem. These worked fine. Thanks!


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  7. Something unrelated , how do in import my keywords from Bridge to Lightroom, where is the keywords file found in Bridge.



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  8. Mike, being a little presumtious answering, but I think you can unlock the layer by double clicking on the layer and renaming (I think, I only have CS2) and the padlock in the lightroom crop in tool is probably locked in place which locks the aspect ratio. Click on it to unlock, hope this helps and no-one is offended by me answering!


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  9. Matt,

    I’m still not able to install these presets. I’ve tried to find a way to convert them for windows (I have Vista) but haven’t found a way yet. Do you have any ideas??


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  10. Matt,
    I was wondering, is there a “baseline” relative to image capture that makes the use of your presets more effective ? Or do you use the presets and then individually adjust the effects as required (which is what I suspect) ?

    Also, some presets actually act as an “adder” to the image ie , Contrast, Sharpness. Where as your New York effects are adjusting more exposure related settings.

    Is there to “double up” on a preset ?

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  11. mike,

    re 2) I hope I get what you mean, but try dragging one of the corners all the way over the image. Then the 4×6 crop should turn into 6×4. Works for me at least :-)

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  12. Thanks again for some great presets, Matt!

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  13. Matt
    two quick question
    1)have photo in LR, use the drop down menu under Photo to make adjustments in PS 7. the psd’s background file is locked>how can IZ unlock it and get to work on it in PS and get it back in LR

    2) have portriate picture sizes to 4X6 fine but when I want to take the picture and crop it to 6X4 ratio/orientation it just wants to stay with the 4X6 ratio

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