Okay - yes, I am going nuts with the free presets for Aperture 3 this week. Hey I told you I was working on these. Most of these freebies are ones that I fished out of stuff I already use. This one happens to be one of ummmm maybe a dozen versions of Kodak Portra 400NC -ish, -y presets I have setup in various states all over the place in my library. Again, like the last Portra preset this one is designed as a baseline to allow an extremely wide use of those basic controls up a the top to achieve a look - that look being a variety of Porta 400NC variations in the realm of normal.
Basic controls to me means the sliders way up at the top of the adjustment HUD. White balance, the exposure block, and the enhance block. Hey I am lazy so I don't like to scroll around too much, plus I am scared too much scrolling will give me some sort of repetitive motion injury or some such thing. Okay before I let you get your grubby mitts on the preset let me blather on a little bit about use of this little guy.
Note the top screen shot of Aperture 3. All of those versions use this preset. The only difference is in variations by randomly forking around with those basic controls I just mentioned. I happen to like looks that allow subtle variations via fairly broad differences in those controls rather than completely wild variations based on tiny nudges. All of these are more or less similar variations of the same basic look.
What might surprise you is how very very different the WB, exposure and saturation ranges are to produce these with the 400NC preset. Speaking relatively they are massive - having a massive range allows finer tweaks… Just my thing. Just for review here you may want to switch your WB control to Skin Tone mode and even without sampling anything just use the warm/cool slider - very well calibrated for varying people images. That's what I did here the base WB is as shot auto OOC. So up at the top you have…
- top/left WB slider yanked over to the cool side, -2/3 stop exposure, saturation 1.2 everything else default.
- top/right WB slider yanked over to the warm side - crazy warm as in +0.83, exposure as shot, everything else default.
- bottom/left WB as shot, exposure +1/3, saturation 1.2, everything else default.
- bottom/right, let's go friggin nuts. WB warmth slider all the way over to the right, exposure a whopping +1 stop, black point 10, saturation 1.2. Holy friggin crap Batman - that's flexible.
Keep in mind I shot these for the window light field guide and I shot them with plenty of exposure(meaning my ooc whites were actually very white, not gray) - more than most of u would so those + exposure adjustments are for effect not correction. Take that into account if your images actually need correction in the exposure department. I happen to like presets that contain a particular look with a lot of variation via direct controls so that's what I will be packaging up. I just want them and the way to get various looks very consistent across the lot of them. That takes a bit of work.
Okay sorry for making you all wait so long to get the bloody preset - if you have waded down this far you deserve a free preset so just right click your mouse right here, unzip, open it in Aperture 3 and go to town. As usual any feedback good bad or ugly is always welcomed and appreciated.
Ps. This one is not at all for wild color. It's for very subtle color and very subtle highlights. Heck use it how ever you want. Let me know what works for you.