- sharpen an image
- color correct
- use layers in a way you haven't done before
- do things that your already doing more efficiently
- use other effects you may not have thought to use before
I use presets for all my wedding, engagement, and family shoots to color correct, sharpen, add some contrast etc. BUT! I studied presets and decided what other people did that I liked; through this process, I found what worked for me and my style, then I built my own presets. I now use my own presets that (most importantly) look different from the presets I have purchased, so that my workflow is fast and easy. I do not use presets on my commercial work or my portfolio work! Why? Because I don't want my portfolio to look exactly like someone else's. I always edited my images from scratch. It doesn't actually take as long as you think, because I think about what I will be editing before even shooting the image. This way I'm not pulling my image into photoshop and just playing around. I don't like doing this for commercial clients as I should be knowing exactly what the end result will look like. However, on the occasion, I will edit by playing around on Photoshop for fun or to get inspired.