How to Create a Preset in Aperture 3 – The Easy Way!

by Mike on May 3, 2010

One of the best reasons to pick up Aperture 3 is presets – something the Aperture-user community demanded for quite a while. I am compiling a list of free Aperture 3 presets, and will soon be adding my own to it.

But for now, I’m going to give you a quick tutorial on how to create your own presets in Aperture 3. It’s pretty simple, so this tutorial will be short and sweet.

First, select an image, and work your own post-processing magic.

Here’s my starting point:

The individual adjustments don’t matter for the purposes of this tutorial – but I wanted to create my own black and white preset. So I shifted to black and white with the control + M shortcut (M for monochrome), pushed the red slider a little bit, added a vignette, a little sharpening, and a few other tweaks – just play around and see what you come up with!

Here’s what I ended up with:

I decide to make this particular combination of adjustments, so I’m going to save it as a preset.

Simple, just click on Presets on the Adjustments tab, and hit Save as Preset:

If you’d like, you can save your new preset under one of the existing categories – just click on the arrow next to each one to stick it in there:

Click OK and you’re done.

As you can see, I named mine “Dramatic Black & White,” even thought it’s not all that dramatic.

But you get the point – creating presets in Aperture is a snap.

P.S. If you have an Aperture 3 preset or presets you’d like added to my list of free Aperture 3 presets, shoot me an email at ApertureLand at

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Austin May 24, 2010 at 10:16 pm


I just picked up Aperture 3 for my pro and it rocks! However, the presets are giving me a problem. After I apply a preset, I see that the preset selectively applies to the photo. What gives? Half the pic looks great, but the other half definitely does not.

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