Note: I do not believe this question is a duplicate of "How to emulate the in-camera processing into lightroom" (I referred to this question in my question) I just want that my monochrome images stay monochrome and my colored should stay in color.


  • shoot photo 1 with Picture Style "Color"
  • shoot photo 2 with Picture Style "Monochrome":

On import of both raw files, I want Lightroom to automatically:

  • apply Lightroom Preset "MyColor" to all photos shot with Picture Style "Color" (in this case photo 1)
  • apply Preset "MyMonochrome" to all photos shot with Picture Style "Monochrome" (in this case photo 2)

If I import Raw Files into Lightroom, which where shot with the Picture Style "Monochrome", the Thumbnail list in Lightroom shows the correct monochrome Pictures, but as soon as Lightroom starts to rebuild the Thumbnails (not using the jpg sidecar file or the embedded thumbnail any more) it builds the thumbnails from the Color Image, not respecting the Monochrome Picture Style.

Of course I can import all images and auto-apply a monochrome Lightroom development setting, but I often switch between Monochrome and Color while shooting, so it would be helpful to extract the information from the raw file and apply different Lightroom presets based on it.

Related questions:

How do I start with in-camera JPEG settings in Lightroom?

Does not help: I have no process option for "Monochrome".

lightoom camera calibrations

How to emulate the in-camera processing in Lightroom?

Maybe right (that it is not possible to apply picture Canon picture styles), but I hope that one of you may have a solution or a workaround for the problem.

Update3: I found out that the Data is present in the Metadata in the Raw file (thanks to ExifToolGui & ExifTool)

Tag Name: PictureStyle
Value: Monochrome

So it would be a solution to import the Photos normal, then filter them by the Picture Style and manually apply a previous defined Lightroom Preset to the result.

The problem is, that Lightroom does not show this Metadata, so it can't be used for filtering.

Possible solution can be using the metadata-wrangler

further reading:

  • \$\begingroup\$ possible duplicate of How to emulate the In-camera processing into Lightroom? \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Mar 6, 2014 at 14:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think this really is a duplicate of the question about emulating in-camera processing. Focused sub-questions can work, but I suggest tilting this more towards the specific: How can I create a Lightroom preset which very closely mimics Canon's Monochrome picture style? \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Mar 6, 2014 at 14:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ The general question got closed as a duplicate, because "you can't exactly, but using presets gets you close". And here: A) there is no preset, and B) while emulating every possible camera style is too broad to be answerable in any way but generalities, getting a specific look should be fine. \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Mar 6, 2014 at 14:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ i already read the answer to the question you referred (i also referred it in my question), i also wrote why the answer does not fit my question. i am looking for a workaround a solution and not a "does not work". somewhere in the raw file is the information which says "momochrome" it must somehow be possible to read this flag on import and depending on the flag apply a lightroom picture preset. i just want the image to be monochrome and if i have to manually style the preset (one time) it is ok for me, but it should be applied automatically on import (to only pics taken in b/w) \$\endgroup\$
    – c33s
    Mar 6, 2014 at 17:25
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think this is a dupe of those at all, this is a great question which I also would like a solution for. But yea, maybe it was incorrectly worded :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Shizam
    Mar 6, 2014 at 19:44

2 Answers 2


There is a solution provided by Jeffrey Friedl and his awesome Lightroom plugin "Data Explorer".

  1. download and install the plugin
  2. select all the images, which have different canon styles applied, you want to process. the free version of the plugin is limited to handling a maximum of 500 images at once. Edit > Select all
  3. run the data explorer. File > Plug-in Extras > Explore...

LR file menu

  1. choose "User-Specified Master-File Data Field" in the "Explore" Field and "MakerNotes:PictureStyle" in the "Field" field and press the "Begin" button. LR Data Explorer Filter

  2. Press the "isolate" or "Isolate Each Reslut to its own Collection" Button to get a Collection which have, for example, only the "Monocrom" Picture Style.

LR Data Explorer Result

  1. Then apply a "Saved Preset" from the Quick Develop Section. For example Lightroom B&W Presets > B&W Look1

LR apply Preset

you are done. all your canon monochrom picture styled images have now a LR B&W preset applied.


The problem with doing what you want in Lightroom is that for the most part Adobe products ignore the maker notes section of the EXIF metadata. In fact, if you convert a Canon .cr2 file to .dng, the maker notes are stripped from the file. The maker notes section is where the picture style and most other in camera settings at the time the photo was taken is stored in Canon files.

One solution is to open the files using Canon's own Digital Photo Professional software which automatically applies the in camera settings to the RAW file. You then have the freedom to use those setting or alter some or all of them. DPP is supplied in the box with every Canon DSLR and updates can be downloaded at no additional charge.


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