Review of the Sleeklens Landscape Lightroom Workflow - Cramer Imaging - Quality Fine Art Photography
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Review of the Sleeklens Landscape Lightroom Workflow

Review of the Sleeklens Landscape Lightroom Workflow
A few weeks ago, we were contacted by Sleeklens.com and asked to do a review of their Lightroom workflow for landscape photographers.  In exchange, we received a free copy of their presets to try them out.  Well, we've done so and now we want to share our findings with you.

This photo didn't work out right before.  It worked out better with the "Through the Woods" collection.
The Sleeklens.com "Through the Woods" Lightroom presets collection comes with both global and brush presets.  There are global presets to make small and incremental tweaks (like sharpening, highlight and shadow adjustment, and color adjustments) in addition to "all-in-one" presets.  There are also several brush presets designed to adjust these kinds of settings in small and specific areas.  You can find these presets for sale using this link.

The past few weeks, we've been trying out this preset collection we received on several different photos which we've taken.  We've had some interesting results with the collection.  Here are the conclusions we've come to.

We started by checking out the Sleeklens.com website and the collection for sale there.  The photos they had demonstrating the "Through the Woods" Lightroom presets looked very overdone to us.  Some of them looked on the radioactive side with their color.  We started out testing this collection with some low expectations because of that.  We were in for a surprise.

Over the past few weeks, we've found that the "Though the Woods" preset workflow to be a rather valuable addition to our overall landscape photography workflow.  We really appreciate the stackable nature of these presets.  This feature makes it really easy for us to adjust a single element in a photo with a single click while doing damage to the rest of the photo in the process.

Here's a photo from Bryce Canyon's Sunrise Point which we've processed up entirely using the "Through the Woods" workflow for demonstration purposes.

Cramer Imaging's raw photo demonstrating the Sleeklens.com "Through the Woods" Lightroom preset workflow on a Bryce Canyon picture
Before or Raw
Cramer Imaging's processed photo demonstrating the Sleeklens.com "Through the Woods" Lightroom preset workflow on a Bryce Canyon picture
After or Processed
If you want to duplicate this look, we started with the "Pressed in Time" all-in-one preset, then used the "Add Contrast," "Add Clarity," "Sharpen," and "Subtle Black" vignette presets.

We started trying out these presets on photos which, for some reason, we could not get right on our own.  It seemed like a good place to start for us.  This preset collection didn't help every photo we hoped it would, but the collage at the top shows that some of our photos did work out better with Sleeklens.com's collection than we did on our own.

The incremental global adjustments were a very nice addition to our workflow.  We've started incorporating them into our normal process and find that the color correct presets are some of our favorites to use out of this set.  The reduce yellows preset was extremely useful in our award-winning photograph "Sunset at Bryce" in getting rid of some strange yellow cast which was causing the scene to look wrong.

Below you can see some of the processing steps for that photo.  The first image is the raw version of the photo we took that day.  The second is the post-processing we did without the "Through the Wood" collection.  The final image is using the some of presets which came in the "Through the Woods" collection.  We feel that these presets gave this photo that extra special something which propelled it into being an award-winning photograph for us.

Cramer Imaging's raw photo demonstrating the Sleeklens.com "Through the Woods" Lightroom preset workflow on Sunset at Bryce
Raw Photo
Cramer Imaging's partially processed photo demonstrating the Sleeklens.com "Through the Woods" Lightroom preset workflow on Sunset at Bryce
Our Processing without "Through the Woods"
Cramer Imaging's professional quality landscape and nature photograph of Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah at Sunset Point
"Through the Woods" processing added
In our final processing, we used the global preset of "Deep Blue Skies" and the brush tools of "Intense Sunset" and "Cloudy Sky Definition" to get the final punchiness which you see in the photo from image 2 to image 3.

While we like many of the global presets and what they do, the really valuable addition to our workflow was the brush tools.  That is a side of our workflow which we hadn't yet built up properly.  As you can see above, the brushes were the difference between a decent photograph and an award-winning photograph for us.

A quick disclaimer: these presets are not meant to be simply applied and that's all.  They are meant to be tweaked around, just like any other presets, until you get the look you want.  So adjust the sliders around.  If something is over-saturated, then desaturate it.  If it's not sharp enough, then, by all means, adjust the sharpness slider until it's right.  Use what you need and leave the rest if they don't work for you.

Final Thoughts


If you are a landscape photographer looking to start or supplement your Lightroom workflow, you might consider going with or adding the Through the Woods collection to your existing workflow.  I've done a little shopping on the internet for Lightroom workflows.  At $39, this is one of the more affordable complete workflows you can get.  Others out there are either incomplete or priced much higher.

If you're a wedding or portrait photographer, you might consider looking at some of Sleeklens.com's other workflow options.  You can find them using this link.  If you're unsure or want to take these presets out for a test drive before buying, Sleeklens.com has a free starter package listed on this page for you to check out.

Happy processing.