Lightroom Mobile — FREE Presets & Lightroom CC Tutorial

Adobe Lightroom is the most widely known editing software for photographers in the world today. This advanced editing suite offers a wide range of tools to help you get as much detail as possible from your photos. In Lightroom, you can apply “Presets” to photos, which are essentially filters that you can apply to achieve a certain look. Once installed, presets can simplify your editing process and free up the amount of time you spend in post-production.

There can be a bit of a learning curve to the desktop version of Adobe Lightroom, especially if you are new to photography/ unfamiliar with image editing software. Fortunately, Adobe released the free Lightroom Mobile CC App, allowing photographers to convert their desktop presets into mobile versions. Mobile presets are actually designed to help those with minimal editing knowledge achieve beautiful edits instantly!

Below, I’ve listed step-by-step instructions that will walk you through How to install Lightroom Presets on the free Lightroom Mobile app in just a few minutes!

Please note: this article covers how to install Lightroom Mobile presets. If you need help installing Lightroom Desktop presets, feel free to check out this article!

 
 

Getting Started with Lightroom CC

  • Before you begin, you’ll need to make sure you have both the Dropbox and Lightroom CC apps installed on your phone— these are both free apps that are available for iPhone and Android users.

  • You’ll also need to create a free account before you can use the Lightroom CC app.

 
 

Free Lightroom Mobile Presets

Before you can install your Lightroom mobile presets — you’ll need access to your Lightroom CC mobile presets! Download my FREE Lightroom Mobile Preset Guide — this guide will contain the Dropbox link to 3 of my best-selling, free Lightroom Mobile Presets (in DNG format).


Get your Lightroom Mobile CC PDF installation guide and access to my free presets by adding your email below:


Installing Your Lightroom Mobile Presets

To install your presets in the FREE Lightroom mobile app:

  1. Make sure you have Dropbox and Lightroom CC installed on your phone!

  2. Make sure that both your phone operating system and Lightroom CC for mobile are up to date.

  3. Make sure you’ve download my FREE Lightroom Mobile Preset Guide (see above) — this guide will contain the Dropbox link to 6 of my free Lightroom Mobile Presets.

  4. Once you click the link provided in my PDF guide, you will be redirected to the Dropbox folder containing your mobile presets!

 
 

Download the preset files in Dropbox by selecting the 3 dots to the right of each preset.

Select Export > Save Image to save the DNG files to your camera roll.

 
 

Repeat the previous step for each preset to save them all to your phone.

Open the Lightroom CC Mobile app.

Select the ‘+’ icon (next to Albums) and then create a new album for your presets so you can quickly find and use them in the future. Select the album that you just created, and begin adding your presets!

 
 

Select the left side of the blue button at the bottom right-hand corner of your screen to add the presets to Lightroom. Choose ‘Add from Camera Roll’.

 
 

Select each of the DNG files you just downloaded to your camera roll (these may display as black squares and that’s normal!) and choose the blue ‘Add Photos’ button at the bottom of your screen. Note: you might get an error saying that Lightroom cannot load the image— just ignore this and select the check mark at the top right-hand corner of your screen.

 
 

The presets will then begin to load into Lightroom— this may take a moment!

 
 

To use a preset, you’ll need to select the photo and click the circle with the 3 dots (…) in the top right-hand corner of your screen.

 
 

Click ‘Copy Settings’, making sure the ‘Crop’ feature is not selected. Click ‘OK’.

 
 

Select any photo from your library that you’d like to edit using the preset. Go back to the (…) circle at the top right-hand of your screen and click this again.

 
 

Select ‘Paste Settings’ to apply the preset to your photo. And you’re finished!

 
 

Every time you’d like to use one of the presets, follow these steps:

  1. Go back to the preset album that you created

  2. Select the preset you’d like to use on your image

  3. Copy the settings

  4. Paste onto your photo!

Saving Your Mobile Presets with the Lightroom Mobile Premium App

If you've upgraded to the premium version of the Lightroom CC mobile app, you can save the DNG files as user presets and make your life a whole lot easier! To create presets in the upgraded version of Lightroom CC:

  1. Make sure that both your phone operating system and Lightroom CC for mobile are up to date (and that you are upgraded to premium!).

  2. Follow steps 1-10 above.

  3. Instead of clicking ‘Copy Settings’, you can select ‘Create Preset’.

 
 

Name your preset and select the drop-down menu nested under ‘Preset Group’ to create a new group for the preset collection. Choose whatever name will help you stay organized— Lightroom Mobile Presets, for example.

 
 

After naming the preset and placing it in the appropriate group, select the check at the top right-hand corner to save your preset.

 
 

To use the preset, choose a photo in your Creative Cloud library that you’d like to edit. Use the toolbar located at the bottom of your screen, scroll all the way over to the right and select the ‘Presets’ button.

 
 

Select the preset group you’d like from the drop-down menu and choose the preset you just created to apply the edit!

You can now delete the original DNG files you used to create the presets. But it’s important to note that this only applies to users who have upgraded to the premium version of the Lightroom CC mobile app — do not delete the DNG files if you have not upgraded to premium!

Lightroom Mobile Editing Tips

It’s probably no secret that I am a huge advocate of the Lightroom Mobile App! Once installed, the Lightroom Mobile App can simplify your editing process with photo presets, and free up the amount of time spent in post-production.

However, it’s important to note the following: While Lightroom Mobile presets are a great starting point, many (if not most) images WILL need additional editing after a preset is applied. Fortunately, this can be accomplished easily using the sliders in the Develop Module of Lightroom Mobile CC. You will need to play around with the tools in your free Lightroom Mobile app and find a happy medium for your edit!

Here are a few of my best tips for editing in Lightroom:

Lighting— Temperature and tint in Lightroom CC

The temperature slider will adjust your image to be warmer or cooler, whereas the tint slider will adjust your image to have a pink or green tint. The two adjustment sliders will work in tandem, so you’ll need to play around with the tools until you find a happy medium for your photo edit!

These sliders can have a pretty dramatic effect on your photo edit— you will more than likely need to customize your presets for a specific set of photos if your lighting is too cool or too warm. For example, if your photo was taken in an area with yellow/harsh lighting, you will probably need to move your temperature slider to the left (blue) to cool down the lighting of your image. As you can see below, the temperature of this photo needed to lowered so much that the preset would be unnatural on any other image— the lighting in the coffee shop was just so yellow that there was truly no other option!

 
 

Tone adjustments in Lightroom cc

  • Exposure: The exposure slider lets you add/subtract light to/from an image. Some photographers don’t like to mess with the exposure, as adjustments can be made more precisely by moving the ‘whites’, ‘blacks’, ‘highlights’ and ‘shadows’ sliders to focus on specific areas of an image (instead of making one large change with the exposure slider). However, because I tend to shoot my photos slightly under-exposed, I typically will increase my exposure slider just a tad to correct for the under-exposed image. The reason I shoot slightly under-exposed is because over-exposed images are much more difficult to fix/compensate for in post-processing. Increasing the exposure slider somewhere between +0.2 to +0.35 will typically work for me, but it all depends on the image I’m working with!

  • Highlights: Highlights bring down the exposure of the lightest areas of an image without affecting the entirety of it. I almost always take my highlights all the way down (-100), which will bring back more of the photo detail (i.e. detail in the sky/clouds that may have been otherwise lost).

  • Shadows: The shadow slider lets you make the darkest areas darker or lighter to either get rid of unwanted detail, or to make the detail more visible. I will typically take my shadows nearly all the way up: depending on the image: somewhere between +60 to +100.

  • Whites: The white slider allows you to create pure white areas in your image, in order to naturalize your image further.  My whites will typically go down pretty far: somewhere between -65 to -100.

  • Blacks: Similarly, the black slider allows you to create pure black areas in your image to naturalize your image further. I usually bring my blacks up pretty high, ranging somewhere between +70 and +100.

While there are plenty of other advanced editing features for Lightroom Mobile (i.e. the tone curve, color adjustments, split toning), the adjustment sliders listed above are going to be the essential ones to look at after applying your preset — you’ll want to play around with the editing tools and find your own happy medium!


If you have any questions at all about Adobe Lightroom Mobile presets or the installation process, feel free to drop a comment below and I will get back to you as quickly as possible!

 
 

Hi there! I’m Fallon. A Florida native who, after receiving my masters degree in the U.K., decided to nix the 9-5 path in search of something more. Now, I run my graphic and web design business straight from my laptop, all while traveling the world. I’ve now traveled to over 25 countries and have knocked some pretty big adventures off my bucket list… and I’m just getting started. Follow along my journey as I present tips, guides and resources on solo female travel, photography, videography, entrepreneurship & the crazy lifestyle of a digital nomad.