How to Install Presets & Use Lightroom on Your iPad

Lightroom iPad

How to Install Presets & Use Lightroom on Your iPad

Lightroom for mobile devices like the iPad is fast becoming a popular way to edit images on the go.  The ability to sync images between your devices as well as the sheer portability of an iPad are huge reasons many are turning to mobile devices for editing.

If you are wanting to use presets and edit in Lightroom on your iPad, this tutorial will show you exactly how to do that.  And you will be editing on the go in no time!

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How to Install Presets in Lightroom for iPad

There are two ways to install presets in Lightroom for iPad.  You will need to determine which of the following will work for you.

IF you DO HAVE a subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud, you can easily install your presets in Lightroom CC.  Once they are installed, they will automatically show up in the Lightroom mobile app.  To do that, follow the instructions in this post to install them

IF you DON'T HAVE a subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud, but DO HAVE the free Lightroom App on your iPad, follow the instructions BELOW to install your presets:

Step 1.  Download Your Presets

We recommend doing this step on your computer since there is no easy way to do this on a mobile device.  If you can't do this, download the WinZip app and unzip them in the app.

Step 2.  Unzip the Preset Folder You Downloaded

Most presets you purchase will come in a zipped file folder that you will need to unzip before proceeding.  Again, we recommend doing this step on a computer, if possible. 

  • On a PC, you will right-click on the zip folder and choose Extract All. 
  • On a Mac, just double-click on the zip folder. 
  • If you need to unzip on your iPad, locate the zipped file and tap it to extract.  (If you are following the instructions for another mobile device, follow these instructions for more help with unzipping.)

Adobe Lightroom iPad

Step 3.  Save Your Presets to the Cloud

Save the preset files you just unzipped to your favorite cloud service (we highly recommend Dropbox) so that you can then access them on your iPad.  You can also save them directly to your device via the Files or Photos apps.

can you run lightroom on ipad

Step 4.  Load Presets in Lightroom Mobile for iPad

  • Open the Lightroom App on your iPad and click on an album to add the DNG photos to "All Photos".
  • Click on the three dots (...) in the upper-right corner of the Lightroom app.
  • Choose the "Add Photos" option.
  • Choose the location of your photos - "From Camera Roll" if they are saved to your device and "From Files" if you are accessing them through your Files or from the Dropbox app.
  • Highlight the DNG image files and click "Add" or "Done".

PLEASE NOTE: The file images may look strange or may even have a question mark over the file image.  This is because the files are DNG files and most devices aren't set up to read them.

SELECT AND INSTALL THEM ANYWAY.  Lightroom WILL be able to read them!

How to install Lightroom presets on iPad

  • Select one of the DNG files you just added and click the three dots (...) in the upper-right corner of the app. 
  • Choose "Create Preset" and give the preset a name (we recommend the original one).
  • Put the preset in a Preset Group named for the preset collection (i.e. Dark and Moody) to keep them organized.
  • Follow this same process for each of the DNG files.

Lightroom iPad Pro

Your new presets are now installed on your iPad
**Read on to learn how to apply presets and edit on your iPad**

adobe lightroom ipad

Editing in Lightroom on Your iPad

Now that you have your presets installed in Lightroom on your iPad, let's go over a few tips to help you start editing right away!

1.  Where to Find Your Presets

Once you have your presets created and saved on your iPad, you will find them in your Lightroom App on the right side by clicking on the icon that has two overlapping circles (see image below). 

If you have organized your presets in folders (and I hope you have!) just click on that folder name to open it.  The presets should be inside!

ipad Lightroom

2.  Using a Presets on Your iPad

Adding a preset to your image in Lightroom on your iPad is as easy as clicking on it.  You can click and try different presets on your image until you find the one you like best. 

When you have settled on your preset choice, click "Done" at the bottom of the screen and it will apply that preset to your image.

3.  Making Other Image Adjustments on Your iPad

The Edit Section is where you will spend most of your time and find most of the important editing sliders.  To get to the Edit Section click on the three horizontal lines with a circle on each line (located on the right side of the app).

adobe lightroom ipad tutorial

In the Edit Section, you will find several subsections including:

  • "Light" use this to adjust exposure, contrast, highlights, and shadows.
  • "Color" use this to adjust the white balance and color saturation.
  • "Effects" use this to adjust clarity or add a vignette.
  • "Detail" use this to sharpen your images or reduce the noise.
  • "Optics" use this to enable lens corrections.
  • "Geometry" use this to turn on the Upright tool or adjust the distortion in your image.

Along the right side of the Lightroom Mobile App on your iPad you will also see icons for cropping, healing, and other selective edits (graduated filters, radial filters, and the brush tool).

The last two icons allow you to apply edits from a previous edit or create a different version of your edit.

More Helpful Posts for Lightroom Mobile

It can be tricky getting to know a different version of the classic Lightroom editing tool you may be used to, but learning to edit on mobile will allow you create social media worthy images from ALL of your devices, no matter where you are!

Here are some additional tutorials that will help you learn to use Lightroom Mobile on your iPad or other mobile devices:

Lightroom Mobile: How to Get Beautiful Edits Using LR Mobile App

How to Batch Edit in Lightroom Mobile

How to Sync Photos & Edits to Lightroom Mobile

How to Smooth Skin in Lightroom Mobile

How to Add a Watermark in Lightroom Mobile

Do you have any questions or comments about How to Install Presets & Use Lightroom on Your iPad?  Just leave us a comment below - we would LOVE to hear from you!  And PLEASE SHARE this post using the social sharing buttons (we really appreciate it)!

Mobile Lightroom Presets