Mastin Labs out of Seattle is the creator of some of my favorite film emulation presets for Lightroom and Adobe Camera Raw. Today they’re releasing their latest preset pack, Portra Pushed. Check it out my review of the pack after the jump.
Push processing film is the practice of “overdeveloping” less sensitive film to increase the exposure. This typically results in a more contrasty image with more, and sometimes some funky, oversaturating of colors (among other things). It’s a technique that film shooters have been using for decades, and it’s a look that a lot of popular film presets are using as a starting point before going way over the deep end.
I love Mastin Labs presets because they’re originally designed for hybrid shooters who work with both film and digital, to get as close a match between their film shots and their digital files as possible. What that means is they tend to be extremely close to the film stocks they’re emulating, and they don’t go overboard with crazy fade effects or wild levels of saturation and contrast. The new Portra Pushed presets continue that legacy of subtlety and accuracy, doing an excellent job of giving you that slightly over-processed effect, without ending up look like you set all of your Lightroom sliders to 100. The pack includes presets for Portra 160, 400, and 800, pushed +1 and +2 stops. They also include Kirk Mastin’s excellent soft/hard shadow and highlight adjustments as well.
“But how close are these presets REALLY to emulating film?” you ask. Glad you brought that up! Check out some comparisons below between actual film scans and digital files edited with the Mastin presets and guess which is which.