Many people often comment that the hardest thing they strive to do as a photographer is to create a feel; a signature look for their shots. I also wish I knew what mine was but I’m not so sure that’s a thing.

Of course if you ask some of my peers they’ll often say my images are ‘warm’ or earth toned. I imagine this is probably more to do with my eyes and the way I register image temperature as opposed to a style. To be honest I’ve always shy’d away from heavy post editing in my images (my colour images at any rate – my black & whites are a whole other thing), trying to provide more ‘what you see is how it was’ colours and tones.

That’s all well and good but, as I’m starting to learn, it can make for some pretty boring work. Especially when you’re catching the mundane and the norm; the every day stuff going on around you.

Today I thought I’d spice things up a little and started playing with some more blatant colour styles in Lightroom. The method I’m playing with is sometimes referred to as matte’ing.

The following images were all editing using a preset in Lightoom called ‘Red Lift Matte’. I then enhanced them further by dropping the saturation in some of the more obvious colour ranges, playing with the tone curve to flatten the blacks, dropping the overall exposure and adding in a healthy serve of vignetting for good measure.

What do you think? I think some of the images actually turned out really nice. When I see them all lined up in a gallery like this, however, they look quite fake. I do really like the underground subway entrance though. I think this style really works for this image. What do you think?

Do you have any go to styles you find yourself pulling out more often than not?