The ability to create and save Develop Presets in Lightroom is great. Even cooler is the ability to import and use Presets created by others. “Hey, I really like that effect, how did you do that?” “Here, let me send you this preset.” Almost every week for the past few years, Lightroom Killer Tips has posted some presets. www.LightroomKillerTips.com
Every month, On One sends their subscribers a free download of some more new presets. Lots of LR related websites offer more for free, or are willing to let you pay money and buy them. Over time, you can accumulate a lot of them.
I have a pretty good memory, but I have a really tough time recalling the difference between Endless Summer and Endless Summer 10. Scrolling through each imported group and seeing its effect in the Navigator Window is fun, but can be quite time consuming.
When you create a preset, LR automatically stores it into the cleverly named User Presets Folder. Unfortunately, sometimes downloaded presets also wind up there. So is there a better way? Of course and it is really simple. You can create your own folders and it is incredibly easy to do. LR works on an alphabetic sorting hierarchy, so I wanted to create a folder I knew would be easy to find, descriptive and helpful for how I actually work.
Put your cursor anywhere in the Presets panel and right click. A dialog box will open like this. Select New Folder and then name it. Because I wanted it to always be the topmost folder, I started the name with a “1.” and then the file name “Mark’s Favorites”. Unless I create another folder with “0” or “00”, it will stay on top, no matter what else gets added.
Now just drag the presets from the numerous file folders into this new folder. It will create copies of them. I would keep the number in there small. If you add too many, you will find yourself back in the same place you started.
As a final thought, you can think about organizing your presets into groups, by what they do. All your Black and White presets into one, sharpening into another, Instagram effects into another and so on.