Want to Blow Your Mind? Development Settings Importing in Lightroom


Post 11
Series: Introduction to Adobe Lightroom®


Oh the Possibilities!
There are a “ton” of possibilities in the Develop Module of Lightroom. But before you even get there, you have the option of using a few of those development capabilities AS YOU IMPORT. Yes, you can apply a set of selected image changes before you even see your images open. Why would you want to do this?
I often shoot indoor sporting events, and the lighting is terrible. I bring my best camera equipment for the type of images I need, and then I make sure my camera settings are optimal. (If you have any pointers on capturing high speed in low light, let me know!) After all this, I still end up with a group of images that need tweaks. Have a batch that you want to give a vintage look to? Turn all images grayscale? Here is one place to wave a magic wand.

In order for this to work for you, you’ve got to know what the settings will do to your images. You might want to test an image or two out before you import the entire batch, so you know exactly what to choose.
Your Apply During Import Development Settings are found directly underneath File Renaming.

Click on the arrows on the right side of “none”, and you have seven Preset groups to choose from.

Here are your options in B&W Filter (My!):

Here are other B&W options (Oh my!):

Here are B&W Toned choices (My oh my!):

Color Presets (Going cross-eyed yet?):

Effect Presets (Head is spinning):

General Presets (Some of my favorites):
And settings for video (Did you say VIDEO? Sure did.):

Are you having fun yet?!
(Next Post: Knity-Grity Details in the Metadata and your Destination)
These posts are part of a series: Introduction to Adobe Lightroom®
Jennifer Apffel is a photographer with over a decade of experience in portrait, event, and product photography. She also does freelance graphic design and fine art. For more check out,, or look for her on

One comment

  1. Jennifer, I, like you, have been shooting indoor sports (high school basketball).

    Depending on the quality you are after, you need a larger-sensor camera, with excellent high-iso performance, a fast lens, and maybe good software (LR) to smooth out hi-iso noise. It’s tough to make that affordable as all of that is not cheap.

    I did find a way to save money though…buy a used APS-C camera…this could be, say, a Sony Nex, or a couple-year-old Nikon DSLR…Nikons do better at hi-ISO than Canon per dollar spent (I used the DXO sports/low-light scores as a reference). Then buy a used lens…if you stay below about 85mm, and get a non-zoom (cheaper) fast lens (F1.8 or better?) it’s not too expensive.

    For example a used Nex-3n is maybe $200, plus a Nikon-to-Nex lens adapter for $20, and a used Nikon 50mm F1.8 D lens ($75)…you have a decent setup for indoor sports for less than $300. However, with the Nikon lens you would not have autofocus, which does make sports shooting difficult.

    An alternative is to buy the Sony 50mm 1.8 for $275 to get auto-focus…so $475 total with Sony in a nice small package. Or you could go all Nikon…a used D5100 body for $275, and a new Nikon 50mm F1.8 AF-S for $100…$375 for “good” indoor sports pics. 50mm is OK in a basketball court…you will probably wind up cropping a lot of your pics. An 85mm would help with that…it all depends on how close you can get or wanna be to the action.

    Non-zoom lenses, esp fast ones, are much cheaper (and lighter) than zooms, but require more planning to be at the right distance to your subject. A zoom gives more flexibility, but is heavier and more expensive. And actually, I find using a non-zoom prime lens easier in a way, as I am not thinking I have to constantly fiddle with the zoom…one less thing to think about in a fast-moving sports scenario.

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