Silver Efex Pro Magic Fix

As I continue to pour through old photos, I have challenged myself to looks for ones that before were “unsalvageable”.  With a little love and care, I have been able to save a few from the depths of my archive and bring a new bunch back to life.

This particular photo “update” would not have been possible with the processing skills I had when I initially took the shot.  I had just bought a 9 stop Variable ND filter and was playing around with it, not using it correctly.  When you use one of those bad boys on a wide angle, you will get weird vignettes on the corners if you crank up the polarity all the way (the filter is really just two polarizers set on top of each other).  As you can see, the first shot was pretty ruined.  After using some ND filters in Lightroom and running it through Nik’s Silver Efex Pro, I was able to save it.  Below is a link to save you 15%!!

You can save 15% on Silver Efex Pro and all other NIK products by accessing NIK’s website HERE.  

And here is the final photo after the fixes:

Thanks for visiting!!


  1. Man, this is better than magic! 😉

  2. Len Saltiel says:

    Well done Adam. The transformation is amazing bringing out the lines and the textures. I always go back to older images as my editing skills advance. There are gems like these on everyone’s computer just waiting to be discovered.

  3. Dave DiCello says:

    Wow man, that is awesome! What an excellent processing job! I haven’t got into filters yet, but I need to someday!

    • Adam Allegro says:

      Thanks buddy, and I appreciate the Tweet! Really, all I did was mess around with that ND option on the top of the right column in Lightroom. Next to the rotate/clone/brush. You can place these little customizable ND lighting filters around your shot. I used it to balance the horrible lighting the shot began with.

  4. Jan Winther says:

    What an incredible save, Adam. It looks really good. And when I see what you had to work with in the beginning, wow.
    When I got my Vari ND filter, i did the same as you – cranked it all the way past the max mark. My first thought was, great – this is a piece of crap. – Then i noticed the min max marks on the rim of the filter… it has worked like a charm ever since.

  5. Rick Louie says:

    It’s amazing how much dynamic range is contained in digital images. Nice recovery!

  6. Silver Efex is one of my faves. You did a great job with it on the image.

  7. Jim Nix says:

    looks great, nice save Adam!! I love all the Nik stuff too, it totally rocks!

  8. Marc Collins says:

    What a difference. Great job ‘rescuing’ this image. Must go have a look at some of my back log of lost photos!

  9. Edith Levy says:

    Wow that’s really incredible Adam. Well done the final image is absolutely awesome. Love it.

  10. Very impressive recovery. Amazing that the shadow detail was still there.

  11. A.Barlow says:

    wow man, nice job on this one!

  12. Ken Bello says:

    Beautiful job, Adam. It looks like the detail was there all the time. My first inclination is to crank up the FILL LIGHT in Lightroom or ACR to bring out some detail. That usually saves my bacon most of the time.

  13. Jimi Jones says:

    What a rescue job, Adam. Very well done, sir. Really like how this turned out.
    What brand 9-stop do you have? I have a 9-stop Hoya.

  14. Curt Fleenor says:

    Fantastic job rescuing this one Adam!

  15. Chantal says:

    the proof is in the pudding, the B&W is so much better!

  16. isabella says:

    Wow, that awesome work.. How long did it take to make it look like that? Thank you Adam for sharing this!

  17. Rob says:

    Awesome work saving the image!

  18. John says:

    I’m planning to get an ND filter soon for my wide angle! I know you’ve got to be very careful when using them to shoot, but I’ll do my best to do it properly.

    Of course it’s always nice to know that there is software out there that can salvage even the most unsalvageable photos. Though, it’s always nice, when you hit the nail on the head and don’t have to rely on software :)

  19. Great job Adam. You were really able to turned that image into a work of art.

  20. kim says:

    This is awesome Adam. You really did a amazing job with the final image.Very impressive work of saving the image. I really love it.

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