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Photography, Tutorial

Faded Vintage Photography Preset in Lightroom

I’ve spent the past few hours perfecting a new preset for the Matte Fade Vintage Photography look. Below is a run through of how I made it.

how to make a matte fade vintage look photography preset

How do I make my photos look vintage?

Tone curve

Click on the image above to see it bigger, but the crux of it lies in the tone curve. By pulling the lowest left (black tones) directly up and the upper most right (white tones) directly down gives it the vintage photography faded cross process sort of look.

Here are the numbers for the 4 anchor points that I created:

100/95% | 79/78% | 34/33% | 0,9.8% (hover over the anchor points to see the references to aim for)

Level settings for a vintage photography look

The next step is to tweak the levels in the ‘Basic’ control panel. I spent a lot of time tweaking the white, shadows and blacks to a point where they worked ‘quite’ well in most applications, the idea is to then tweak them accordingly to each image.

I set my preset to:

  • Exposure +0.05%
  • Contrast +7
  • Highlights +20
  • Shadows +5
  • Whites +17
  • Black +15
  • Clarity +48
  • Vibrance +5

Contrast and clarity

I still like to keep plenty of punchy contrast in the image so tailor this to suit your preferences.

Final little nuances

Adding some Grain in the effects panel adds to the shadow textures but it will also be worth adding a touch of Cross Processing in as well. That is what adds the vintage photography look to photographs.


Once you’re happy with the preset, save it. Then as you apply it to different images you might decide to tweak it slightly, simply right lick on the preset and ‘Update with Current Settings‘.

wedding vintage style photography-150830-01

This preset works great with Fuji cameras, especially for wedding photography and landscape photography. Have fun with it and remember, more time behind a camera and less time in front of a screen is the right way to go!

vintage photography preset used in landscape



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