A black and white photo of Christmas lights in someone's hand


Subject is a free black and white Lightroom preset that converts colored images to professional monochrome. It is optimized for all types of photography, from portraits to landscapes. Its vivid yet balanced tones give images a classic look and feel.

Collection: Black and White Presets
Best for: Versatile, Wedding and Engagement
Style: Balanced Tones, Professional, Wide Tonal Range

You may use this film preset regardless of lighting conditions. It can easily be applied to both indoor and outdoor photographs. Unlike other monochrome presets, Subject is neither too bright or too dark; as you will see in the examples below, complex grays take the place of a broad color spectrum.

If you are into black and white photography, make sure that you keep this handy filter. Because of its moderate tones, you can easily use it to have a consistent look throughout your digital portfolio or even social media like Instagram.

Broadens the Tonal Range

A black and white photo of a hat on top of a striped tablecloth

Bright Whites. The preset begins its processing by switching to black and white mode. Simply, this lets Lightroom convert color to gray tones. The emphasis is now on their range and intensity.

To create its unique monochrome film look, Subject augments its tones. It optimizes its light regions by brightening highlights. You can easily spot the result in the After photo above. Examine the bright white tones of the cheese and the fabric.

A black and white photo of a small cup of coffee

Deep Dark Tones. The preset reinforces dark regions as well. For this, it deepens blacks further but tweaks shadows a bit so that they do not appear harsh. All of these are even refined in the tone curve.

Try to observe the dark areas in the After photo above. These are now in dark gray tones. Observe how the preset converts the brown coffee foam and the table’s wooden finish.

Intensifies Tones

A black and white photo of a woman wearing a white jumpsuit and a glass of smoothie

Vivid Tones. Subject, given its name, makes sure that the subject or scene is vivid. It creates this look by increasing clarity and amplifying contrast. As a result, you get bold, defining, tones. The adjustment in clarity, more specifically, reinforces midtones.

You can examine the result in the After photo above. Look at the smoothie, the woman’s outfit, and her crisply defined bracelets.

Refines Luminance Settings

A black and white photo of two Macaw parrots

Custom Brilliance. The preset also tweaks the brilliance of each color’s corresponding gray tones. It sets them at varying levels using Lightroom’s powerful HSL panel. It brightens the grays from purple, blue, and magenta. You can mostly see the effect of these enhancements on skin tones, bodies of water, and blue skies. In the example above, you can easily spot the result on the Macaw parrot’s wings.

A black and white photo of roses

Deep Grays. In contrast, Subject darkens the gray tones converted from the colors green, aqua, and red. In landscape images, this means that you would have deep and vivid grays in photos of fields, plants, and other greenery. These also somewhat affect skin tones and other cool hues.

Subject preset is for Lightroom Mobile, Desktop and…

Like all our presets, you can absolutely use Subject preset as is, right out of the box. With any preset, you might need to make adjustments to accommodate your specific camera, settings, lighting, and subject matter.

  • Entirely Adjustable
  • Compatible with Lightroom 4, 5, 6 and CC
  • Performs with both PC, Mac, and Mobile
  • Applicable to both RAW and JPG images
  • 100% Free

Free Lightroom Preset by Monica Aguinaga

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