Kyoto, 2018. Shot on Lumix LX100, processed with VSCO a6 Desktop Lightroom preset

How to Create Your Own Aesthetics in Photography

Creating your own aesthetic in photography: the camera you use, the focal length you use, whether you shoot with flash or natural light, and how you process your photos (whether RAW or JPEG):

Make photos you like looking at

Lisbon, 2018. Shot with RICOH GR II in Positive JPEg mode, with further contrast added in Lightroom
Lisbon, 2018. Shot with RICOH GR II in Positive JPEg mode, with further contrast added in Lightroom

I’ve shot with a lot of different cameras, and I’m constantly experimenting with processing styles, different camera formats, films, etc.

There is no perfect aesthetic in photography. I think the point is for us to keep shooting and making photos that we like to look at (with an aesthetic we find beautiful).

Once again:

Make photos that YOU like to look at!

And if you want to make photos that you like to look at, you must create an aesthetic (processing style) that looks good to your eyes.

ERIC KIM AESTHETICS

For example, these are the aesthetics I like:

Of course this is just specific to me. You must discover which aesthetics you love!

Photography is all aesthetics

New York City, 2017 #portra400

Think of yourself as a painter. You want to paint colors which you like.

Uji, 2017 #ricohgrii #cindyproject

You create your aesthetics both by the equipment you use, and how you process the photos after you shoot them.

In other words:

Post-processing your photos is not “cheating”.

In-fact, how you process your photos is extremely important. But you must create a good photographic composition before processing your photos.

The general tip I have with processing your photos is this:

Keep processing your photos until it brings you delight — until you like it! If you keep processing a photo, and you still don’t like it — ditch the photo.

If you need help ditching your photos, share them to arsbeta.com.


Make your own presets

Kyoto, 2018. Shot on Lumix LX100, processed with VSCO a6 Desktop Lightroom preset
Kyoto, 2018. Shot on Lumix LX100, processed with VSCO a6 Desktop Lightroom preset

A good way to create your own personal aesthetics in photography is to create your own presets in Adobe Lightroom (Desktop).

For example, a good way to start creating your own presets is to use a preset you already like, and then remix it to your own needs (download ERIC KIM PRESETS and feel free to play around with it).

Tokyo, 2018 #cindyproject. Shot with RICOH GR II and flash, in JPEG positive film preset, processed further with VSCO a6 Preset

Create your own preset in Lightroom Desktop

Step 1: Enter the ‘Develop’ module, and apply the presets on the left side

For example let us take this picture I shot — shot with RICOH GR II and flash, in JPEG positive film preset. To add EVEN MORE contrast and processing to it, I added this ‘A6 contrast’ preset I made:

Step 2: Selecting preset on the left

How to create your own preset:

Step 3: Create your own preset once you’ve made some changes
Step 4: Name your new preset, and create it.

By creating a new preset, you can speed up your photographic workflow.

More Lightroom PDF Viz TIPS >


Never stop painting with new colors and aesthetic visions

Kyoto, 2018

Never stop evolving your own aesthetic vision. Recognize that the whole process is in a state of flux.

Kyoto, 2018 #cindyproject
Kyoto, 2018 #cindyproject

Be relentless. Never stop shooting, and never stop making beautiful photographs that you consider beautiful art in your own eyes!

MAKE ON!

ERIC

Scroll to Top