How to create a Monochrome image from a RAW file? – Part 2

How to create a Monochrome image from a RAW file? – Part 2

Table of contents

Creating a Monochrome version


In the first part of this article series I have created a color edition of my image.

In this part of the article series I am going to convert the image into a pleasing blue tone image, using Silver Efex Pro 2. My work starts in Adobe® Lightroom, where I find the color version, mark it and open the context menu.
In the context menu I choose Edit In > Silver Efex Pro 2.

Confirming my choice a pop-up window opens.

Here I have chosen the color space sRGB. In Adobe® Lightroom, I usually work in Photo Pro, but in this case, sRGB works fine.
Confirming the choices opens the image in Silver Efex Pro 2, where I am trying out different presets to convert my image into a monochrome. For this image, I like the High Structure (harsh) preset for everything but the sky. I am also applying a Toning Adjustment, to add a Blue (9) tone, from the Finishing Adjustments Panel on the right side.

Saving the photo creates a TIFF file, which is automatically imported into Adobe® Lightroom.
The result is not completely satisfying to me, I find the sky in this monochrome version too noisy.

A second monochrome version

Since I wasn’t content with the High Structure Harsh image, I am now creating a second monochrome version. To do so I am again opening Silver Efex Pro 2 from the context menu of the color image.

The sky in this blue tone image is better in my opinion. However, I am not satisfied with the foreground in this photo.

Compare the two monochrome versions by using the slider. Sliding to the right reveals the Fine Art Process treated image, sliding to the left the High Structure Harsh processed one.

Figure 6: Fine Art Process versus High Structure Harsh

As you can see, the sky in the Fine Art Process image is less noisy than in the High Structure Harsh version, which is why I prefer it. Yet the foreground loses too much of its structure. I will, therefore, combine both photos in Adobe® Photoshop in the last part of this article series on March 30, 2018.


1Silver Efex Pro2 belongs to the Nik Collection, which recently has been bought by DxO. A free download is available here and a new version is supposedly released mid-2018. Back to top

All trademarks and copyrighted items mentioned are the property of their respective owners.

I am in no way affiliated with any of the products used in this post-processing process. I do not receive any kind of compensation for this article.

All photos were taken by Lille Ulven photography.

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