Using Lightroom 4 Skyline plugin Presets to achieve Traditional Film vintage looks

Whilst moving to digital photography has been an amazing revolution, we now live in a world where images are cleaner, crisper, have more tonal and dynamic range and provides the photographer with more creative freedom than ever before. As a creative professional in today’s world of unlimited digital choice and free flow there is still a place for the vintage look that traditional film can provide. The problem is that each film type has a very different look and feel, i.e. Kodak Tri-X 400 is Black and White , fantastically grainy combined with a deep contrast, Fuji Velvia is able to produce amazing greens with high saturation, Kodak Kodachrome creates saturated reds which just pop out of the print and are truly amazing, however, you had/have to commit to the look and feel in the camera. All these vintage film types are totally achievable using the Development Module of Lightroom, but replicating these older looks is complex and demands an understanding of how each film type would represent colour, tone, saturation and grain, without the many years of experience and a bucket load of free time it’s going to be challenging to create all of those traditional looks.

I recently came across a photographer that is so passionate about film and the look that it provides, SkyLine media have dedicated a vast amount of time re-creating these vintage looks and using the inbuilt power of the Lightroom Development module and harnessing the Preset Module. SKYLINE MEDIA with the help of professional photographer John G Moore have created this series of powerful presets that provide a whole toolbox of traditional film looks as well as a set of fun presets in the Skyline series (

I decided to see how good these were for my self and found an image that I would like to try to achieve the vision that i had in my mind when i took this image.

Above the original image of this bicycle in Paris. Here follows a collection of presets within the Skyline series and are easy achieve with the click of the mouse.

Skyline – Classics – B&W Portrait Selenium

Skyline – Classics – B&W Portrait Sepia + Contrast

Skyline – Classics – Vintage Chocolate

Skyline – Kodak 400 T-Max Pro

(I have shown a 1-1 preview (above) to show the film grain that is added as part of this preset, but notice how the details are still kept and are amazingly well defined, creating a beautiful image)

Skyline – Fuji NeoPan 1600

(The above tone happens to be my favourite preset, with an amazing film grain, fantastic contrast and works really well on this type of image as well as a both male and female portraits)

Skyline – Cross Process C41 – E6 (Red)

(Even C41 – E6 cross process film looks are covered as part of the X-Process Presets)

As you can see a whole lot of effort has been placed in created these film preset bundles utilising the incredible flexibility of the Lightroom 4.1 RAW processing engine, this will save a huge amount of time for the amateur and professional alike  , provide a way to learn more about the Development module but also try those vintage looks within the digital world. We are also able to modify the Development module panels to tweak the output to add my own creative flair.

To find out more about the Skyline series, navigate over to and try some examples out.



3 Responses to Using Lightroom 4 Skyline plugin Presets to achieve Traditional Film vintage looks

  1. Henry says:

    I’ll have to try this out as I do miss the variations in films. But I’m pretty sure it was Fuji *Velvia” not “Fuji Vevia” as stated in the opening paragraph of this article. I used ISO 50 film quite a bit when lighting would allow.

  2. Anthony says:

    wow, image 4 looks really nice and rustic.