Digital Lith Tutorials – Dealing with presets

 

Once you played around with the program you may find parameters that you like more than others. And since there are many parameters, you do not want to remember them all. This is where presets come in. We already used them in the previous session. If you went through the previous tutorial sections, your presets list might already show more than just the Default preset. In fact, it might look like what you can see on the left. I reduced the Digital Lith window size so that you can see the whole preset area elements which means the list of presets and the New, Import and Exchange buttons. And with the previous sections you might also be already familiar with the import button.

And you may already made friend with presets without deliberately defining one yourself anyway.

First there is the history. Whenever you do a development, the used parameters are stored to the history. You can browse through the history using the Previous and Next buttons at the bottom of the parameter area of the user interface. What you did with this was just to select an un-named preset. The history is preserved from one session to the next, so once you quit the program you do not loose your history.

But having only the history would be very uncomfortable. There is a better way to remember parameters and that is named presets. Once you have a parameter set that you like, click on the Add button on the presets panel and a dialog will show up which lets you save these parameters to a preset with a name you give and a description. There are different types of presets. First you can just take all the parameters which includes the development parameters, the color parameters, the uneven development parameters and the image adjustment parameters. Or you can just take a selection of the above. This means if you define a preset to only contain the color parameters, then all the other parameters are unaffected once you select that preset. And third, you are also able to define a streaking union preset which will just deal with streaking parameters and also when selected does not overwrite the exiting streaking parameters, but just extends to them. But at the moment you do not know about streaking at all – so let’s not deal with this now.

Once you hit OK the preset will show up in the presets list and you can select it from there. If you move the mouse over a preset name in the preset list, the description will be shown in a small tooltip window like the one you see on the right.

If you like to manage your presets then right or ctrl-click on a preset which pops up a context menu that lets you rename or redefine a preset from the current setting. There is also the possibility to delete the preset or export it into a file so that you can share the preset with others or move to another computer. And at the bottom there is the possibility to add the preset to the favorites menu.

To import presets from a file that you got from someone else or to re-import a preset that you have been exported before you can use the Import button. This opens a file selection dialog so that you can select the preset file and import the presets stored in the file.

Another way to get your list of presets filled is to go to the Digital Lith Exchange. That is the button next to the Import button. The Exchange will be handled in an extra episode.

And there is another kind of presets. It is the processed image itself. Every time digital lith stores an image it puts the processing data into the metadata. You can read the processing data from an image file by clicking on the Read From File button. This lets you select the image file and populates the processing data from the data found in the metadata.

Over time you might store more and more presets and the list fills up and you will end up scrolling up and down to find the preset you are looking for. To access those presets that you favor more easy there is the Favorites menu which lets you setup a list of the most used presets. On the right you can see the Favorites Menu with one preset already added via the popup we talked above.

And since even that menu might fill up there is another way to define what will show up in the menu and what not. If you select Manage Favorites from the Favorites Menu you will see an image like the one on the left which lets you select those presets which are to show up in the Favorites menu. As you can see the coloring example preset is already selected and as you can see above that is correct, since it has been added to the favorite presets before. Once you are done with selecting your favorites, just click OK and the dialog window will hide and the menu is updated with your selections.

OK, we mentioned an image adjustments preset section. In the next episode we are going to talk about the image adjustments and how they influence the final result: Click!