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Extra-Sensory Perception A Fresh View Within Easy Reach The Digital Advantage Sidebar: Jay Scott's Excellent IR Adventures Near, Not Far IR That IR Look Can Your Camera Handle IR? What Makes a Good IR Camera? Internal IR Cut Filters Honey, Where's The Remote? IR-Sensitive Cameras Less Sensitive Cameras First, Some Filter Terminology NIR Transmission Spectra For Several Common IR Filters The Ever-Popular Hoya R72 The Wratten 87 and 87c The Wratten 88a What Do IR Filter Numbers Mean, Anyway? The Short Version Apply Liberally Know Your Sources Sidebar: Black Body Radiation Exposure And Camera Support Supplemental Filters Recording: Color vs. Grayscale Focusing
IR Performance in Digital Cameras
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IR Filter Choices
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Basic IR Techniques
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Whence the Digital IR Look? Source Spectra o Relative NIR Reflectivities o Camera Variables o False Colors and Monochromes
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Sidebar: Forbidden Absorptions R72 False Colors Wratten 87 Grays Wratten 87c Blues White Balance Caught Blue-Handed The Real Skinny?
IR Contamination—the Other Side of the IR Coin If You Need Something To Worry About, Find Something Else o What Would IR Contamination Look Like? o Hot Mirror Filters — A Cure Worse Than The Disease o The Heliopan 8125 "Digital" IR/UV-Cut Filter
References and Links IR Galleries o IR Information o Suppliers
See also the IR/UV Checklist Last updated October 22, 2009
Why Infrared? Conventional visible light photography is challenging enough. Why bother with infrared? Because it opens up an otherwise unseen corner of the world — one of serene beauty and never-ending surprise. Digital cameras make this peek around the red end of the visible spectrum easier than ever before. On this page...
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Extra-Sensory Perception A Fresh View Within Easy Reach The Digital Advantage Sidebar: Jay Scott's Excellent IR Adventures Near, Not Far IR That IR Look
Topic Index Last updated October 22, 2009
Our senses strongly shape our understanding of the world, as every photographer well knows, but they sample only small slices of the reality around us. What might we learn and think and feel if we could hear beyond 20-20,000 Hz, as our dogs do, or see beyond the narrow visible light band at 400-700 nm? Curiosity about the world beyond natural perception motivated some of our greatest inventions and scientific advances. Since the 17th century days of Galileo and Leeuvenhoek, telescopes and microscopes working with visible light have extended the reach of human vision to ever larger and smaller scales — today by many, many orders of magnitude. To say that these instruments have revolutionized all of science and much of Western philosophy and even religion in the process would not overstate the case.
Denver's Washington Park and the Rockies beyond
In the last 2 centuries, visual observation escaped not only the human scale but also the visible spectrum — that narrow band of electromagnetic (EM) radiation where the solar power spectrum and the sensitivity of the human eye both peak. (Certainly no coincidence there.) Cameras and films sensitive to infrared and ultraviolet light gave us our first glimpses of a world awash in invisible light. Imaging devices based on more exotic forms of light (X-rays, radio waves, etc.) soon followed and continue to proliferate. Today, as ever more sophisticated observing devices open up new segments of the EM spectrum to our view and analysis, astronomers and cosmologists find it necessary to revise their understandings of the cosmos — and even of our own solar system — on an almost continuous basis. And along with these views of the world beyond the senses have come many scenes of unimaginable beauty. Any image at Hubble Space Telescope Images by Subject or in the W. M. Keck Observatory gallery will attest to that.
Out-of-spectrum experiences have generally been beyond the reach of the average photographer, but today's silicon-based consumer-grade digital cameras make it easy to explore the strange and serene corner of the invisible world found just beyond visible red in the near infrared (NIR) band of the EM spectrum at 700-1200 nm (0.7-1.2µ) wavelengths. Throughout this article, the terms infrared, IR, near IR and NIR will refer to the 700-1200 nm band of interest to digital photographers unless otherwise noted. Saturn's moon Titan at 0.8-5.1 microns (near to far IR) as captured by Cassin on 10/26/2004 from an altitude of ~450,000 kilometers (280,000 miles).
To this day, the NIR remains one of the most useful extra-visible bands in the EM spectrum. Aerial photographers have long relied on NIR imagery to capture the landscape with the greatest possible clarity over a wide range of atmospheric conditions — including some quite unsuitable for Twin Keck telescopes visible light photography. For much the same reasons, atop Mauna Kea
the world-class Keck telescopes atop Mauna Kea (right) spend much of their precious observing time with sophisticated digital NIR detectors mounted. Abundant interstellar NIR radiation conveniently passes through dust, gas and our own atmosphere to allow glimpses into otherwise hopelessly obscured regions like the Milky Way's galactic center. At left is one of humankind's first-ever looks at the surface of Titan, one of Jupiter's four large Gallilean moons. The 0.8-5.1 micron infrared wavelengths were chosen specifically for the Cassini flyby in order to cut through the haze that completely obscured the surface to the Galileo flyby a decade earlier. Titan is in many ways a frozen version of Earth. Page Index | Topic Index
A Fresh View Within Easy Reach The world as seen in the NIR is at once familiar and strange. The vastly different tonalities in the sunlit images at right show how widely the spectral properties of common natural objects differ in the adjoining visible and NIR bands. Manmade objects are full of surprises as well. (For some cheap fun, walk around the house with an IR filter mounted on your digital camera and examine all your stuff through the LCD. You'll hardly recognize some of it.) We'll explore some of the physical phenomena behind these differences below. NIR reflectance patterns
The false color schemes seen in digital IR images like the park scene at right and the leaf still-life at top are another matter entirely. The colors are nothing more than artifacts deeply rooted in camera hardware and firmware, with no direct connection to the objects imaged. Colors aren't even defined in the NIR, of course, but the false colors can add their own mystique to digital IR photographs, and some digital IR photographers like Chris Miekus work hard to manipulate them to their own ends. In all fairness, NIR images aren't for everyone. As accomplished film IR photographer Josh Putnam once put it on RPD, "... people either love [IR photography] or just don't get it, but the ones who love it really love it." That seems to be more true of photographers than of viewers, however. IR photographers commonly find that their IR images generate more interest than their visible light images. Many people appreciate IR's fresh view of things, but it's not just a matter of novelty. IR images have a rich beauty all their own. Page Index | Topic Index
The Digital Advantage Unlike ordinary films, silicon-based CCDs and CMOS sensors turn out to be quite sensitive to the near infrared (NIR) in the 700-1200 nm (0.7-1.2µ) range — so much so, in fact, that some of the incoming
NIR has to be filtered out in order to reduce IR contamination artifacts to acceptable levels in the visible light images most buyers aim to take. The usual solution is to fit digital camera sensors with special internal IR cut filters (IICFs). These sensor-mounted filters vary in their IR transmission spectra, but most consumer-grade digital cameras let enough NIR through to allow some IR photography. Despite a clear trend toward ever-lower IR sensitivities in higher-end cameras, that's still true in 2004, but it gets harder with every passing year. If you get hooked on digital IR, you may end up searching high and low for an Oly C-2020Z or Nikon Coolpix 900, or for the more recent 5MP Minolta Dimage 7. These discontinued cameras are all still quite competent by any standard, but the high prices they command largely reflect their extraordinary IR capabilities. No, my C-2020Z isn't for sale. Special external filters passing NIR while blocking most or preferably all visible light make infrared photography possible. Film-based IR photographers have been using such filters for decades, but daunting technical and financial challenges continue to keep IR film photography well out of the photographic mainstream. Luckily, digital cameras have changed all that. Armed with even an inexpensive IR pass filter, a sufficiently IR-sensitive digital camera makes IR photography
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Eminently affordable — no need for expensive IR film and developing, Enjoyably impromptu — no need to switch back and forth between regular and IR-sensitive films, Easily learnable — via immediate feedback in the field, Immensely fun — for the many surprises the NIR world holds (and for all the reasons above), and Intensely satisfying — for the serene beauty you'll discover all around you.
With quality IR pass filters like the Hoya R72 going for as little as $24, there's hardly a good reason not to try IR if your camera's up to it. Page Index | Topic Index
Sidebar: Jay Scott's Excellent IR Adventures In late 1999, dpFWIW contributor Jay Scott shared with me his first forays into the IR realm with an Oly C-2020Z: I got a Hoya R72 IR filter, and I love it. Taking infrared pictures could not be easier. Put the filter on the lens, optionally set the camera to black-and-white, and go. The camera has enough sensitivity to IR that daylight IR photos can be taken handheld, and I was even able to get indoor IR photos under incandescent light. White plants, dark sky—I love it! A few months later, Jay was still at it, more enthusiastic than ever. IR photography with a digital camera is almost like having an IR eye. You point the camera and look at the display, and you see what it sees. It's so much fun to peer at this surreal invisible world that I wonder why everyone doesn't!
Most infrared photos are made either outdoors or in a studio. But incandescent lights are IR-bright, and I found it easy to make IR photos in ordinary indoor lighting. You have to be prepared for exposure times up to one second, depending on how bright the room is, but it's not a problem if you have camera support. Because incandescent lights are redder than daylight, the "infrared effect" is stronger indoors, at least with my Hoya R72; you are effectively photographing using longer wavelengths than you would outdoors. Household objects can surprise you with their weird appearance in IR; my blue dishwashing soap turned out to be IR-transparent. Plants are white in IR. Flowers are bright, but seed-heads are often dark. The sky is dark, but clouds are bright. Skin looks strangely smooth, which could be an advantage for some portraits. Any object which is hot enough to glow red is more than hot enough to glow near-infrared. I've photographed gas flames and hot coals. The camera's flash is bright enough for IR macro photography with the R72. A decent external flash should be bright enough to take pictures at portrait ranges. Someday I hope to get an IR flash head so I can take IR photos at night without being noticed. Check out Jay's IR photos and commentary. Page Index | Topic Index
Near, Not Far IR Let me emphasize here that digital IR photography typically relies on reflected NIR from sources like the sun and incandescent lamps. Digital camera sensors based on silicon are not sensitive to the far (thermal) IR wavelengths (typically 3.0µ and longer) emitted by objects at room to body temperatures. Heat leaks from houses aren't visible in the NIR, and people, animals and other objects at room to body temperatures don't glow in the NIR any more than they do in visible light. To photograph them in the dark, you have to provide proper NIR illumination using a suitably equipped camera like the Sony DSC-F7x7 or an external NIR-only flash with no filter. This article doesn't have much to offer on NIR-illuminated night photography, but many other web sites only a Google search away address this rich and useful field. Page Index | Topic Index
The IR Look Digital and film IR photographs have a look many describe as surreal. Clear, serene, bold and tonal are additional words that come to mind, at least for landscapes. Physical and firmware-related factors contributing to the IR look are discussed below. Aerial and reconnaissance photographers have long valued the often stunning clarity characteristic of IR photographs, and it tops my list of IR virtues as well. Clarity
IR images owe their great clarity to the atmosphere's exceptional transparency in the NIR. Scattering by air molecules is much less efficient at NIR than at most visible wavelengths. As a result, NIR photons take on average a much straighter path from object to CCD.
In visible light (left), scattering severely limits detail on the more distant portions of the far hillside in this hazy afternoon scene. Removing visible light with Visible light Near infrared aHoya R72 IR filter takes out much of the detailscrambling scatter. An impressive amount of detail shines through the haze in the IR image on the right, despite the odd false-color scheme. Usually monochrome or nearly so, IR images also partake of the deeply tonal beauty typical of black-andwhite photographs. In combination, these visual charms make for some truly stunning IR images. To see for yourself, take a moment now to browse the galleries in Beyond Red..., a site created by talented landscape photographer and dpFWIW contributor Carl Schofield. Page Index | Topic Index
IR Performance in Digital Cameras Before rushing out to buy an IR filter, test your camera to make sure it can do its part. On this page
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Can Your Camera Handle IR? What Makes a Good IR Camera? Internal IR Cut Filters Honey, Where's The Remote? IR-Sensitive Cameras Less Sensitive Cameras
Topic Index Last updated October 22, 2009
Can Your Camera Handle IR? Warning! Some digital cameras are better suited to IR work than others, and a few are downright hopeless. Ever since 3 MP CCDs hit the consumer scene in late 1999, digital cameras have varied widely in their IR performance, but the overall trend has been toward lower and lower IR sensitivities ever since. As of
A Typical Recent Camera: The Oly C-5050Z . it suffered only 5-6 stops of light loss and could easily produce crisp handheld IR shots on sunny days at ISO 100. the Nikon CoolPix 950 and D1. The 5MP Minolta Dimage 7 (D7) was a surprise late-comer to the club.4Q2004. and that's the standard I'll use when comparing all the other cameras mentioned here.11 MP CCD. and most were built around Sony's thenpopular 2. a permissive IIRCF and a fast f/2. you'll have to buy used. With an R72 IR filter. even relatively insensitive cameras can produce satisfying IR photos. the very best IR cameras ever — most notably. 1999.0 lens. the C-2020Z still took great visible light photos with no noticeable IR contamination in the vast majority of situations. And for all that IR sensitivity. the Oly C-2020Z. If you're looking for a digital camera specifically for IR work.0039 mm sensels. in-camera or post-processing noise reduction and rock-solid camera support (read "tripod"). All had some combination of the following features: • CCD or CMOS sensors with large sensels — through either large sensor diameters (the D1 and D7) or fewer sensels crammed onto average-sized chips (all the others) Less restrictive internal IR cut filters (IIRCF) — presumably through less manufacturer paranoia about IR contamination in visible light photos (the C-2020Z) Fast lenses (especially the D1 and C-2020Z) Flexible exposure. The 2002-vintatage Minolta Dimage 7 or 1999-vintage cameras like the Oly C-2020Z. It also rendered IR photos in a false-color scheme that most users could live with and many came to like. the Nikon CoolPix 950 and the Nikon D1 all good bets. That's become the de facto gold standard for IR sensitivity among consumer-grade digital cameras. Page Index | Topic Index What Makes a Good IR Camera? With few exceptions. But if you come prepared for long exposures. achieved its legendary IR performance through a combination of large 0. including manual Effective in-camera noise reduction at high ISO (the D1) Firmware that happened to render IR images in pleasing false color schemes (the C-2020Z and Nikon 950) • • • • • The Gold Standard: The Oly C-2020Z Oly's 2nd generation digital rangefinder. the C-2020Z. quality handheld IR photos are unlikely with most new cameras — even through an IR filter with minimum light loss like the popular R72. and the Canon Pro70 — came out ca.
ISO 100 EV 14. but it's IR performance is so-so at best. The table below details the differences between these two cameras and how they contribute to their respective IR sensitivities.3 @ 1/500 sec. settings. the two cameras equal EVs. . but it does mean that IR w far beyond the handheld range.0028 f/1. the C-5050Z's less IR-friendly IIRCF reduces IR contamination in visible light work. At right is a handheld R72 taken at maximum ISO and aperture with shutter speed fixed at 1/20 sec (which I can usually keep still). Handheld C5050Z/R72 in the camera's native false color scheme In theory. but in practice.0028 mm sensels and a much more restrictive IIRCF render the C-5050Z a whopping 5-6 stops less IRsensitive than the C-2020Z. With an even faster f/1.5 @ 1/800 sec. IR Performance Comparison: Oly C-2020Z vs.0039 f/2. C-5050Z Property Sensel size (mm) Widest aperture Noise at ISO 400 Remote test C-2020Z 0. the Oly C-5050Z. I can't say I see the benefit. ISO 64 EV 14. sharpening disabled. the C-5050Z manages to stay in the IR game but only with the R72. The deeper 87-series filters are out of the question.6 Technical Note: For the handhe maximum zoom (105 mm EFL). Technical Note: For a straight-a ISO 100 in manual exposure mod cropped without further post-pro Handheld sample : Visible light In visible light. Smaller 0.0 Moderate to severe C-5050Z 0.3 f/4.8 lens and reduced noise at maximum ISO (400). Post-proces resampling to 800x600 and unsh with identical USM parameters. A remote test result as dim as the game. The C-5050Z is a very highly regarded camera in its own right.No digital camera sold new or even factory-refurbished in 2003-2004 can match the C-2020Z's IR performance. even against the very IR-sensitive C-2020Z. A typical case in point is the C-2020Z's 5th generation descendent.8 Mild to moderate Comments These sensel diameters translate The fast C-5050Z lens gives it a Increased quantum noise due to s 5050Z's electronics. which have been norm f/6. which I purchased as a factory refurb in 4Q2003.
They would seem to be naturals for daylight IR work as well. Jens Roesner and Alfred Molon. but some IIRCFs are clearly more restrictive than others.1 -11. To fashion a peak sensitivity in the visible band and to minimize IR contamination of visible light images.Handheld sample: IR with R72 filter The C-2020Z's faster shutter spe passing cyclist. ISO 400 EV 3. Sony DSC-F7x7 digital still cameras excel at IR-enhanced low-light work.8 @ 1/40 sec. No IIRCF Some hardcore digital IR enthusiasts have gone so far as to disassemble their cameras and remove the IIRCF. conditions. a move guaranteed to increase IR sensitivity and void the warranty. ISO 100 EV 8.com include many shots captured with a similarly modified Canon G1. The Sony DSC-7x7's Nightshot Mode With built-in NIR illuminators and a "Nightshot" mode that removes the IIRCF from the lightpath to the CCD. 990 IR sensitivities noted below tell a very different story. most if not all digital camera manufacturers cover their silicon sensors with an internal IR cut filter (IIRCF). Little is known about them outside the camera manufacturers and their suppliers. rather pleasant. Page Index | Topic Index Internal IR Cut Filters (IIRCFs) Silicon-based (CCD and CMOS) image sensors are equally sensitive to visible and NIR wavelengths out to about 1200 nm. James Wooten's Removing the IR Blocking Filter in the Nikon CoolPix 990 and 995 nicely illustrates the results and the surgery. Few have Don's eye for IR images. f/2. that professional cameras usually have very restrictive IIRCFs and consumer models usually don't. It's often stated. It is just this kind favorite among IR enthusiasts. Bottom line: The C-2020Z is 5. quite incorrectly.3 Sensitivity loss in the NIR band -6.kleptography.5 stops Note also the strikingly different scenes.6 @ 1/5 sec. which involves replacing the IIRCF with a plain piece of glass to preserve the camera's auto-focus ability.0 stops f/2. The pattern — if there is one — remains unclear. but Sony felt a need to force auto-exposure metering and to restrict Nightshot exposures (f/2 at 1/60 sec or longer) to keep voyeurs from subverting Nightshot to see through . but the empirical Nikon D1 vs. Differing auto-WB algor normally apply an IR-specific W the C-5050Z has that capability. You'll find many additional IR sensitivity comparisons involving a number of different 4-5 MP cameras among the excellent online photography articles posted by Andrzej Wrotniak. The IR galleries at Don Ellis'www. Look Ma.
Page Index | Topic Index Honey.. .. If you don't mind a 3-filter stack. Press any button on the remote. (Some fabrics are apparently transparent enough in the NIR to reveal what's underneath in bright sunlight. a deep IR filter (e. 0.com as a good resource for F7x7 IR photographers. Look for the IR beam in the camera's through-the-lens (TTL) LCD or EVF (electronic viewfinder). Where's the Remote? As usual. equivalent to an 87c.clothing during the day. or you'll see reflections from the back side of the filters.3. I'd suggest 0. Here's a very crude test of IR sensitivity for digital cameras: • • • • Put your camera in program mode at ISO 100.. If you think that you will be stacking. as the 707 is limited to f2 and 1/60th sec as the fastest shutter speed (Nightshot Mode). say. You'll also need some Neutral Density filters. testing is better than assuming. but with ISO locked at 100. a step-up ring and IR and ND filters of. the F7x7s can rise to the occasion.6 and 0. as Paul Cordes recently detailed on RPD: I'm using a B+W 58 093IR. Wish I had thought of that before I bought mine! Paul recommends the "Sony Talk" forum at www. Don't forget to block the IR emitters with something IR-opaque. The pictures are great.9 ND filters to give you flexibility for exposure control. Stacking filters of course results in vignetting. Point a TV.) These firmware restrictions pose challenges for legitimate daylight IR work with F7x7 cameras. camera or other IR remote into the lens from no more than 12" away. to be sure. the Wratten 87c or the Hoya RM90 or RM100) and one or more ND filters to cut daylight NIR input. 67mm might be a good starting choice..dpreview.9 ND.g. you can skip the 0. The filter is absolutely black and admits no light to visual inspection.
it's almost certainly good to go with a Hoya R72 filter or Wratten 89b equivalent. The red-filtered sensels in this now-obsolete CCD approached the 700 nm visible-IR boundary with a whopping ~70% residual sensitivity and a relatively shallow drop-off into the NIR.5MP Nikon D1 also seems to fall in this category. The updated 2. but handholding will be iffy at best. but I don't know what CCD it used. but it still has a chance with the shallower 88a. you should be able to get handheld IR images with an affordable Hoya R72filter or Wratten 89b equivalent. both cameras were fixed at f/2.) If your camera sustains less than 7-8 stops of light loss in bright sunlit scenes with an R72/89b. 1999. particularly forshortwave (700-770 nm) NIR.8 @ 1/20 sec.11MP CCD ca. consider starting out with a Hoya R72 or equivalent Wratten 89b filter. the IR sensitivity of the large-sensel 2. but you can at least get an idea if you happen to have access to another camera of known 87 compatibility. The full-sized test images were cropped without further post-processing. You'll generally need solid camera support and long exposure times. the R72 is still my favorite IR filter overall because it can be handheld most of the time on my C-2020Z. you can still get IR images with an R72. I've also seen excellent IR images taken with the 2MP Canon Pro70 using an R72-equivalent Kodak Wratten 89b gel. the most IR-sensitive higher-end consumer-grade digital cameras were built around the large-sensel original Sony 2. Compatibility with 87-series filters is hard to predict reliably with the remote test alone. Oly C-2000Z and the Nikon CoolPix 950 all used this CCD. By all accounts. That left a generous window for NIR recording. As noted above. but I know little about D1 internals.If the remote's IR beam looks as bright as the one captured at right with a C-2020Z. If you can't compare with a known reference. If it loses more than 7-8 stops. But can it also handle the more expensive black IR filters like the Wratten 87 and 87c? The C-5050Z certainly can't. . ISO 100 in manual exposure mode at full zoom (105 mm EFL). The Oly C-2020Z. and all do well with deeper IR filters like the Wratten 87 series. it has a very good chance with an 88a and at least a fighting chance with an 87 filter. If the beam is as dim as the one captured at left with my Oly C-5050Z. as noted below. Remote Test Comparison C-2020Z C-5050Z Technical Note: For a straight-across comparison. So much for the theory that professional digital cameras have more restrictive IIRCFs. Page Index | Topic Index IR-Sensitive Cameras Included in this category are cameras that come within 3 stops of the Oly C-2020Z when used with an R72 filter. But Will an 87 Fly? If your camera passed the remote test.11MP CCD found in the Oly C-2040Z is much less IR-sensitive. it's not likely to fare well with a black 87. (FWIW.
C-4040Z and E-10 against each other using an R72 filter and autoISO. higher-end consumer-grade digital cameras have been getting progressively less IR-sensitive since 3MP CCDs hit the market in 1999. These findings jibe with Oly's claim that the C2040Z's 2. Soon after the D7 came out. both with much more restrictive IIRCFs and correspondingly much weaker IR performance. his handheld C4040Z turned in shorter exposures and crisper R72 images. Nikon 990. . Based on exposure data provided with a number of online D7 IR images taken with an R72 or equivalent filter. etc. If it weren't for firmware restrictions designed to thwart voyeurs. not by virtue of greater IR-sensitivity. but via lens speed and superior performance at high ISO. The S70's substantially greater IR sensitivity relative to most other cameras (the Oly C-30x0Z. Page Index | Topic Index Less IR-Sensitive Cameras Included in this category are cameras more than 3 stops less sensitive than the Oly C-2020Z when used with an R72 filter.) with the Sony 3. Also much to my surprise. If you're interested in high-resolution IR work using a camera with a more current feature set. If you lay awake at night worrying about IR contamination in your visible light images. Acknowledgements: Thanks to Michelle Cox for providing the D-490Z data points and to Jens for a wealth of D7 intelligence.11MP CCD had been redesigned since the C-2020Z and C-2000Z (and apparently since the C2100UZ). You can learn more about the D7 as an IR camera by visiting Jens Roesner's well-illustrated IR sensitivity and IR white balance pages. Minolta released Dimage 7i ahd 7hi successor models. it's a bug. the C-4040Z produced the best IR images by a wide margin. that's a feature. but the difference could have been nothing more than a more restrictive internal IR cut filter. For better or for worse.Minolta Dimage 7 The 5MP Minolta Dimage 7 (D7) bucks the generally valid inverse relationship between pixel count and IR sensitivity. When physicist David Brown conducted an informal IR comparison pitting an Oly C-2040Z. the entire 87 series should work with the S70. He also found the C-2040Z to considerably less IR-capable than his old C-2000Z.34MP Sony S70. Roland Karlsson reported on RPD that his Heliopan RG 780 (Wratten 87 equivalent) and Heliopan RG 850 (Wratten 87b equivalent) IR pass filters both work well with his 3. their 7x7 cameras would be the most IR-sensitive around by a wide margin. At an automatic ISO of 337. the D7 appears to run only 3 stops or so behind the C-2020Z in IR sensitivity. thanks in part to the large sensels on its 2/3" type CCD. but if you hope to get in some digital IR photography with one of these cameras. Surprises IR performance can be hard to predict.34MP CCD points to a less restrictive IIRCF. Canon G1. Since the RG 850 has an even deeper NIR window than the Wratten 87c. Sony's DSC-7x7 cameras remove their IIRCFs from the lightpath to the CCD in order to capture low-light scenes illuminated with NIR. consider the D7 but stay away from the D7i and D7hi. In Nightshot mode.
subsequent cameras with 4MP and higher resolutions have on average been even less IR-sensitive than their 3MP forebears.34MP CCD. an RPD regular with an enviable knack for non-landscape IR work.0). Canon D30 DSLR Chris Miekus. and about 3 stops more sensitive than the more recent D100 offering. EF 16-35mm f/2.5-5. as shown here. a typical example. runs 5-6 stops behind theC-2020Z through an R72. Danny Gossens reported on RPD that his G1 works well with a Heliopan RG715 filter — a Wratten 88A equivalent with a ~750 nm 50% cut-off falling between the Hoya R72 (Wratten 89B) and theWratten 87 series. however. according to the spectral data published here. Note . Chris reports that with auto white balance. the D60. f/3. IR buffs who tried them with deeper IR filters like the Wratten 87 series and the Hoya RM1000 eventually gave up. A common "heat lamp" provided the delicate lighting for this indoor subject. Chris cautions that lens choice is critical in IR work with Canon DSLRs. Jens Roesner and Alfred Molon. To understand why and what that means for use in IR work.4. The popular Canon EOS 50 mm f/1. My 5MP Oly C-5050Z. he applied a custom white balance to the RAW D30 recording after the fact. Some even appear able to venture a bit deeper into the NIR.6. 4MP and Later Cameras The Minolta Dimage 7 aside. All ran at least 3-4 stops less IR-sensitive than the Oly C-2020Z. Don certainly didn't let the challenges get in his way. You'll find many additional IR sensitivity comparisons involving a number of different 4-5 MP cameras among the excellent online photography articles posted by Andrzej Wrotniak. Canon PowerShot G1 and IS Pro90 — were based variations of the Sony 3.8 L lenses all have anti-IR coatings that create bright central artifacts. see the detailed IR-oriented comparison of the C-5050Z and C-2020Z above.8 L and EF 28-70 mm f/2. but those willing to put up with tripods and long exposures had considerable success with the more forgiving R72/89b filters. took the featured photo at the top of this article with a Hoya R72 mounted on a Canon D30 digital SLR with a Canon EF 28-135 mm. the D30 produces a subdued magenta R72 false color scheme similar to that of the Canon G1. As of 3Q2003. Making Less Sensitive Cameras Work Many newer digital cameras still retain enough IR sensitivity for patient tripod-based IR work with a dark red R72 filter or equivalent Wratten 89B. as Don Ellis' IR gallery attests. Oly C3030Z. I know of no other IR-incompatible Canon lenses.Early 3MP Cameras Many of the early 3MP cameras introduced in 1999-2000 — the Nikon CoolPix 990 and 995. the D30 is more IR-sensitive than its immediate successor. c-3020Z and C-3000Z. D30/R72 false color scheme The D30 appears to run 4-5 stops less IR-sensitive than the Oly C-2020Z. For the photo at top.6 IS lens at f/5. According to Chris. as you can see from R72 exposure data gleaned from Don Ellis' IR gallery (Canon G1) and Todd Walker's R72 samples (Canon Pro90). 8 sec and ISO 100 (EV = 2.
• • • • • • First. as opposed to the "IR filters" or "IR pass filters" that enable IR photography by doing just the opposite.that Danny's posted G1 IR samples all required tripod support and shutter speeds of 1/3 sec or longer. To the extent that the much more common filters blocking UV light are properly called "UV filters".. Page Index | Topic Index IR Filter Choices Specially-designed filters that block everything but IR make IR photography possible. Anyway? Topic Index Last updated October 22. but like it or not. this usage is firmly entrenched in the IR band. Northern California In this article. but his results are more than acceptable. On this page. I'll refer to filters that block IR and pass visible light as "IR cut filters". 2009 First.. that may seem something of a misnomer. . Mount Tamalpais from the Berkeley-Oakland Ridge. Some Filter Terminology Let's pause to clarify some potentially confusing filter terminology. Here we discuss the main types and some of the properties that distinguish them. Some Filter Terminology NIR Transmission Spectra For Several Common IR Filters The Ever-Popular Hoya R72 The Wratten 87 and 87c The Wratten 88a What Do IR Filter Numbers Mean. The filters used for IR photography are commonly referred to as "IR filters".
and The pricey and more restrictive black Tiffen 87. peak transmissivities of only 80-90% also contribute to unwelcome light loss in IR work. In glass in the 49 mm size. these filters went for $25 and $83. 87 and 87c pass progressively less light to the camera's sensor. then. respectively. at The Filter Connection as of April. Data from Clive Warren's Infrared Photography FAQ and the Heliopan No. No wonder. on the other hand. pass no visible light at all. Note that the 89b (R72) has a sliver of transmissivity in the deep visible red just below the 700 nm visible-infrared boundary. For all three IR pass filters. The R72. . The "black" 87-series filters. 8125 Digital filter page. that some cameras can handle an R72 but not an 87 or 87c. but that appellation doesn't give the R72 proper credit for blocking nearly all visible light. Page Index | Topic Index NIR Transmission Spectra For Several Common IR Filters The graphs at right show transmission spectra for several popular filters — the Wratten 89b (R72). 87 and 87c (B+W 093) IR pass filters and the Heliopan 8125 UV/IR cut filter — based on data from Clive Warren's Infrared Photography FAQ and the Heliopan No. Some refer to it as a "dark red" filter because you can see through it to a very limited extent. 8125 Digital filter page. which itself loses IR sensitivity at ~1200 nm. two are particularly noteworthy: • • The affordable and forgiving very dark red Hoya R72.Among the many IR filters available. 2000.
to 6-stop exposure correction. B+W 092 equivalent) With a 50% cut-off at 720 nm (hence the "72" in R72). That's as true of my Oly C-20x0Zs as it is of Carl's Nikon CoolPix 950.7 and exposed at EV 9. With the R72/C-2020Z combination.. gallery. the R72 is a great value.The Heliopan 8125 "digital" IR/UV cut filter claims to block unwanted NIR and near UV as well. and a forgiving entry into the fascinating infrared world. (That's the kind that theoretically reduces saturation. but solid camera support is still a good idea. Sierra Nevada crest. the very dark red Hoya R72 may let a tiny bit of visible red through.. and just plain fun. the lower R72 version was metered at EV 9. The Ever-Popular Hoya R72 Filter (Wratten 89b. . as were many of the stunning IR images dpFWIW contributor Carl Schofield's displays at his Beyond Red. The clarity samples shown above were taken by bracing against a post.3 and exposed at EV 14. but it's hard to argue with the photographic results.0. You can examine the transmission spectrum of the equivalent Wratten 89b gel filter here or in the chart above. R72 images recorded in color are typically rendered brick red and pale cyan tones. Most digital cameras seem to be able to handle the R72. Looking north from Carson Spur. but test your camera before you buy. The upper visible light sample was metered at EV 13. but the spectrum here shows that most of the longwave NIR still gets through. a flexible tool.0 to darken the bright haze. On an IR-sensitive camera like my Oly C-2020Z. Truth be told. Handheld shots are often possible in bright sunlight. I've come to like R72 false color scheme.) I haven't been able to detect any benefit from this filter under normal shooting conditions with several different digital cameras. Page Index | Topic Index The Wratten 87 and 87c Filters These black "deep IR" filters pass no visible light to speak of. the R72 typically takes a 5. You can examine the transmission spectra of the original Wratten 87 and 87C gel filters in the chart above. California. As illustrated in Carl's much-appreciated samplesbelow. handheld C-2020Z withR72 The feature photo at the top of this page and the photo just above were both taken with a Hoya R72. My experiences with the Hoya R72 match Jay Scott's and Carl Schofield's: It's truly a joy. I've had very good luck with a monopod. (If only my photographs matched Carl's!) To my mind.
The 87 runs about 2 stops darker than the R72. The 87c typically yields blue monochromes like the one shown in the sample table below. RM72 092 720 nm 87 n/a n/a 800 nm 87c n/a 093 850 nm . but I've gotten away with it on very bright days with lots of bracketing for camera shake.) The 87c presumably requires an even greater exposure correction than the 87. The Wr atte n 87 At tripl e the cost of the Hoy a R7 2. The Heliopan RG780 is an 87 equivalent. as you can see at right and in Carl Schofield's IR filter samplesbelow. the pricey black Wratten 87c (B+W 093) operates deeper yet in the NIR. C-2020Z with 87 on braced Looking south from Grizzly Peak to Round hard monopod Top. That can be true even for cameras that work well enough with an R72 or 89b filter. Common IR Filter Comparison Samples Kodak Wratten Filter Hoya Equivalent B+W Equivalent 50% cut-off mark 89b R72. especially newer ones. I'm unaware of a B+W equivalent for the Wratten 87. Berkeley-Oakland hills. even with color recording. (This was not always the case with the 87c on Carl's CoolPix 950. The Wratten 87 offers greater contrast and yields nearly pure grayscale output on most digital cameras. the Autumn sky.Many digital cameras lack the IR sensitivity to handle 87-series IR filters. as discussed below. however. C-2020Z with 87 on monopod tofind glass Wratten 87 and its equivalents offer a 50% cut-off deeper in the IR at ~800 nm. northern erCalifornia. The Wratten 87c (B+W 093 equivalent) With a 50% cut-off at 850 nm. the Wratten 87's additional 2-stop bite out of exposure precludes handholding under most conditions. Unfortunately.
it's not at all obvious to me. Page Index | Topic Index What Do IR Filter Numbers Mean. and so on. but it's got to be an even tougher challenge than the 87 on all fronts. The RM90 hits 50% transmissivity at 900 nm. at least. 87c. fun and affordable. How Hoya R and RM series IR filters differ. this less common IR filter falls between the 89b/R72 and the 87 series with regard to total light loss. I have no idea. just inside the NIR.) are pretty much meaningless. The R72 hits 50% transmissivity at 720 nm. etc. B+W IR filter numbers (092. the 88a runs closer to the R72. The Heliopan RG715 filter is an 88a equivalent. but if they mean more than that. I have no personal experience with the Wratten 87C. Page Index | Topic Index Basic IR Techniques IR/UV Checklist Digital cameras make IR photography easy. Kodak Wratten IR filter numbers (89b. Anyway? The short answer is. . all with auto white balance and color recording. not much for non-Hoya filters. All rights reserved. Some cameras (like the Canon G1) can't handle an 87 but do well with an 88a. Courtesy Carl Schofield. but there are some tricks and pitfalls worth knowing. 1. etc. Page Index | Topic Index The Wratten 88a With a 50% transmissivity at ~750 nm.) tend to go down and Heliopan RG numbers tend to go up with increasing 50% transmissivity wavelengths. 87. firmware v.Nikon CoolPix 950 IR Images. 88a. 093.3. By the numbers. The naming system Hoya uses for its IR pass filters is refreshingly rational.
bracket like crazy for exposure and camera shake But first. Last updated October 22.. Grayscale Focusing Topic Index You can pick up useful technical info on IR photography in Jay Scott's IR observations or in Carl Schofield's Beyond Red. noise and resolving power vs. Arrange for adequate camera support Record in color Check your work at the scene When in doubt.. but here are the basics of digital IR photography up front: • • • • • • • Carry your IR filters and use them liberally Know your NIR light sources Know how to play your camera's ISO vs. ever view the sun directly through an IR filter. however black it may appear. shutter speed trade-offs. 2009 The Short Version We'll flesh them out below. and a web search will turn up many more.. • • • • • • • • The Short Version Apply Liberally Know Your Sources Sidebar: Black Body Radiation Exposure And Camera Support Supplemental Filters Recording: Color vs. information page. The transmitted near IR can permanently damage your eyes in a matter of seconds before you know it! Page Index | Topic Index Apply Liberally .On this page.. The references listed below include many other helpful IR resources. a very important safety reminder: Never.
". (In fact. If you limit yourself to landscapes. Emitted NIR is much less commonly encountered but is by no means rare. the thermal emission of visible light. I'd say that goes double for IR. and good IR shots can be impossible to predict from the visible light version. the traditional IR fare. Modern flash tubes emit enough NIR to be useful with IR filters. As Don puts it. After a feeble start at temperatures around 500°C (773°K. NIR reflectivity does not follow reflectivity in the visible band. the real image isn't always the obvious one". but fluorescent lights emit very little. Objects that appear dark in IR images reflect little NIR. and they're more likely to transmit than absorb it. One way to spot NIR-rich sources is to look for incandescence. Objects that appear bright in IR images almost always do so because they have high NIR reflectivities. 932°F). Reflected Near IR By far.. His striking R72 images of Hong Kong underscore the versatility of the most popular IR filter around. but Objects at room to body temperatures don't glow in the NIR any more than they do in the visible band. regardless of the material being heated.Carry one or more IR filters (at least an R72) at all times and use them liberally — even when you don't "see" any promising subjects.) Most tungsten lamps actually peak in the NIR. The sun radiates most intensely at visible wavelengths but also shines very brightly in the NIR. Since most of the energy radiated at such temperatures falls squarely in the NIR. Page Index | Topic Index Know Your Sources Digital IR photos typically record reflected NIR. Generally speaking. the 2 most commonly encountered NIR sources are the sun and incandescent (tungsten) lighting. The sun provides most of the NIR captured in IR photography At this point. Thanks to the "forbidden" molecular transitions that correspond to NIR wavelengths. you'll miss half the fun — and a lot of good IR material. you can skip directly to Exposure and Camera Support or read on for more background on IR emissions. Emitted Near IR Emitted NIR comes primarily from objects at temperatures of many hundreds to thousands of Kelvins (°K) — far above body and room temperatures. To see what I mean. it emits more energy at NIR than at visible wavelengths. too.160°F). Objects hot enough to glow visibly emit lots of NIR. 1. . NIR emission and absorption are both relatively uncommon. The IR realm is full of surprises. incandescence becomes conspicuous at around 627°C (900°K.. take a moment to browse Don Ellis' IR gallery.
so you'll have to resort to mineral lenses that make high-end 35 mm glass lenses look cheap.898 x 10^6 / T (°K) The table below was constructed using Wein's Law.2µ.751 0.100 1.012 1. air is quite opaque at 5-8µ.50 Green Average daylight Tungsten lamp Hawaiian lava Obvious incandescence Onset of incandescence 9.53 Green 0. (Silicon loses all IR sensitivity at 1. as shown here. For example. you might consider something like the indium antimonide (InSb) focal plane array IR sensor in the military night vision FLIR MilCAM.7-1. Black Body Temperatures and Peak Thermal IR Wavelengths Temperature °F °C °K Peak (nm) Peak (µ) Band Solar surface (effective) 9.227 5. Thermal Radiation The thermal radiation emitted by bodies at room to body temperatures lies in the far IR at wavelengths of 3µ (3.000 nm) or longer — well beyond the reach of the silicon-based digital cameras discussed on this site.941 5. electric heater coils.112 3. even when they're not yet incandescent. to "see" body heat in complete darkness.Anything incandescent will also glow brightly at NIR wavelengths.500 5.75 IR IR IR .223 3.778 502 0. If you have tens of thousands of dollars to spend.) Another major hurdle to thermal IR imaging is our atmosphere. Above 5µ.4µ).440 5. I don't think we're in Kansas anymore.7µ) and gloriously transparent at NIR wavelengths (0. you'll have to give up your silicon-based CCD or CMOS sensor for something truly exotic that operates in the 3-5µ band where air and glass are still reasonably clear. an electric heating coil coming up to temperature radiates strongly in the near IR and continues to do so throughout its working temperature range.3-0. While highly transparent at visible wavelengths (0.11 3. To gain a direct understanding of the relationship between temperature and emitted wavelength. Page Index | Topic Index Sidebar: Black Body Radiation Wein's Law states that a black body at temperature T radiates with peak intensity at wavelength w0 (nm) = 2.660 3.127 3.22 3. 480°F) or above can also glow substantially in the NIR. That includes glowing coals. Objects heated to 300°C (573°K. So. glass also becomes opaque. try out the interactive Java tutorial in this superb color temperature tutorial. Toto.85 Near IR 2.505 5. molten metal and glowing lava. just before its first dusky red tones appear.373 1.160 932 627 500 900 773 527 853 2. Note that the human body peaks far beyond the 5µ cut-off for atmospheric and glass transparency.400 2.
adequate camera support can be hard to come by on impromptu IR outings. When available support has been less than optimal. You may be able to clean up a good bit of the noise in postprocessing with a program like Neat Image. Page Index | Topic Index Exposure and Camera Support With most if not all of the visible light cut out of the picture. Remote control triggering would also help. but the R72 is fairly forgiving. Admittedly. bracketing for camera shake has saved many an IR shot for me. but I have even better luck with monopod support in such situations.350 9. a rock. unacceptable noise levels or both. give it a try with handholding and see what you get.Body (human) Room 99 68 37 20 310 293 9. a steady companion. ISO. The solar data was found here. but don't count on that out until you've tried it. Just take 2-4 exposures of everything you shoot. Unexpected Brightness Shifts .89 Far IR Acknowledgments: Information on Wein's Law came from the rather technical but very informative Electro Optical Industries' black body radiation tutorial. a Hoya R72 typically produces 4-6 stops of light loss. my Tiffen 87 runs about 2 stops darker and nearly always requires at least monopod support. You may avoid camera shake that way. Otherwise. I can usually handhold R72 shots on bright sunny days or in other settings with lots of NIR illumination. bring along a tripod or some other rock-steady camera support. If your camera (like my Oly C-5050Z) has an actionshot program mode favoring short exposures at the expense of wide-open apertures and high ISO. On the same camera. but you may also end up with suboptimal resolving power. You can't shake all the time. aperture and ISO according to scene qualities. and there's almost always something around to brace against — a tree.892 9. With adequate support comes more freedom to choose shutter speed. Resolving Power and Noise Some recent cameras are still IR-sensitive enough for handheld IR shots at their widest aperture and highest ISO settings. Remember.35 Far IR 9. On my highly IR-sensitive Oly C-2020Z. Support. a lamp post. exposures with IR filters require substantial compensations.
Page Index | Topic Index Supplemental Filters Atmospheric scatter is seldom a concern in IR work. and for all the same reasons. keep an eye out for flare and vignetting when stacking filters. Grayscale Here's a counter-intuitive one for you: Color isn't even a meaningful concept in the NIR band. especially with spot metering. your IR shots might benefit from a UVcutting haze filter. At altitude. but the naturally dark skies in IR photos generally make life easier on the excess contrast front. NIR reflectance patterns Visible Light Near Infrared For all those reasons. depending on the challenges at hand. To be safe. Before shooting in a priority mode. check the exposure settings via your LCD to make sure you haven't exceeded your camera's capabilities. As in B&W work. As always. but color recording is still your best bet for high-quality IR work. Clear skies that look bright blue to you will usually photograph quite dark with an IR filter in place because the atmosphere scatters little NIR. I should have used one to suppress the bright sunlight reflecting off the bay in the R72 photo of San Francisco at right. I also spend a lot of time previewing with my LCD. you'll have more control and more options in post-processing with color recording.Keep in mind that objects that appear quite dark at visible wavelengths may be very bright in the near IR. especially if handholding. I also can think of a few snowy IR scenes where an upside-down GND might have helped. load a big memory card and bracket heavily for both exposure and camera shake. and you won't have burned bridges with a simplistic in-camera grayscale conversion algorithm. These intensity shifts can lead to unexpected exposure variations in IR shots. Page Index | Topic Index IR glare off San Francisco Bay Recording: Color vs. . I generally prefer to shoot IR with matrix metering in a program or priority mode. Digital cameras excel at the instant feedback needed to work through unfamiliar photographic situations. but unwanted IR reflections may still warrant a polarizer. The opposite may also obtain. Foliage is the classic example. Accentuate the Digital Shoot everything in sight and ask questions later.
Typically.). If you have trouble focusing your IR filters. skill and software tools: 1. even with AF. but some assembly is required. but on the digital side. IR images are theoretically subject to a wavelength-related focus shift. IR light comes to a focus just past the focal plane. RAW color recording with white balance manipulation at conversion to an RGB image. AF should be able to adjust accordingly — provided AF has enough light to do its magic. I've come to like the look of R72 color images. and so on) in post-processing 3. etc. B&W recording is certainly more convenient. My cameras offer B&W recording. Focus shift can be problematic in IR film work. which has of course been positioned for visible light. Wratten 87 series images usually came out as pure grayscales. Page Index | Topic Index Focusing The short answer: Stick with auto-focus (AF) and you won't have to worry about wavelengthrelated focus shifts. 5. Depending on the spectral characteristics of your lens (achromat. Color recording with grayscale conversion in post-processing 2. If NIR is the only light coming in. try increasing depth of field by stopping down the aperture and reducing subject magnification as best you can. time. depending on available camera features. These false color schemes are illustrated above and discussed in more detail both above and below. apochromat. Grayscale (B&W) recording mode Many experienced digital IR photographers greatly prefer the power and flexibility of the first approach. both in-camera and at post-processing. Color recording with manipulated in-camera white balance (keep showing cards of different colors to your camera's "show me something neutral" custom white balance function until you get a false-color scheme you like) 4. it's also largely absorbed within the generous depth of field typical of consumer-grade digital cameras. early digital cameras like the Oly C-2020Z and the Nikon CoolPix 950 rendered R72 images in a characteristic and I think rather pleasing brick-and-cyan false color scheme. you have several alternatives. Personally. but I always record IR images in color. Color recording with color manipulation (red-blue channel swapping. admixture of channels from IR and visible light versions of the same image. IR filters don't seem to interfere with AF accuracy on most digital cameras — certainly not on the Oly C-2020Z and the Nikon CoolPix 950. .With color recording. but you'll need to stay on top of the recording mode in effect to avoid mishaps between IR sessions. Later cameras with more sophisticated Bayer color interpolation and white balancealgorithms tended to render Wratten 87c color recordings as blue monochromes and R72s as magenta monochromes garish enough to make anyone wince — at which point the hunt was on for ways to manipulate the false colors. If your camera's IR false colors don't suit.
Whatever the source. the source is assumed to be solar NIR. In each case. . most often the sun. Source Spectra The top layer is the source of near IR (NIR) illumination. skip ahead to a discussion of IR contamination. The intensity of sunlight may peak at green wavelengths. the balance between longwave and shortwave components will have an impact on the way your IR photos look.. In the bulleted paragraphs below. • • • • • • • • • • Source Spectra Relative NIR Reflectivities Camera Variables False Colors and Monochromes Sidebar: Forbidden Absorptions R72 False Colors Wratten 87 Grays Wratten 87c Blues White Balance Caught Blue-Handed The Real Skinny? Topic Index Last updated October 22.. The same is true of incandescent illumination. On this page. Conventional flash units produce a different spectrum. the links lead to thumbnails of images that illustrate the brightness relationships discussed. 2009 If you're not in the mood for speculation. but sunlight is loaded with NIR as well — particularly at the shortest NIR wavelengths. This page will explore its origins.Page Index | Topic Index Whence the Digital IR Look? The distinctive digital IR look is a many-layered thing. which will in turn suggest ways to manipulate it. as do IR flashes and the LED-based IR illuminators available today. Page Index | Topic Index Relative NIR Reflectivities Next come the NIR reflectivities of the elements in the scene.
Checking out the NIR world though the LCD of a digital camera with an IR filter mounted is a good way to learn to pre-visualize IR shots. red pigments are often brighter than are whites and off-whites. Clouds are very bright and the clear sky dark because condensed water droplets scatter all NIR wavelengths very efficiently. In the visible band. leaves reflect NIR very efficiently because their complex internal air spaces offer many opportunities for shallow-angle internal reflections that eventually bounce the NIR out again. Red car paints also tend to be a good bit brighter than whites. It's also full of surprises. • • • • An IR Stroll Through the Park Through an R72 filter. mainly for want of bright skylight to reflect. Page Index | Topic Index Visible NIR (R72) Camera Variables Next in line among the many layers contributing to IR look come several layers related to the camera itself: • • • • • the external IR filter used. the internal IR cut filter applied to the CCD. the CCD itself. Leaves lose their NIR reflectivity when soaked in water and pressed to drive out the air. the Bayer pattern color filters applied to the CCD. Conifer needles tend to be less bright than deciduous leaves for reasons I have yet to divine. I had a lot of fun on this IR stroll through Denver's Washington Park. tiny airspaces work the same magic in fallen snow and fluffy soap suds. but air molecules hardly scatter them at all (and then only at the shortest NIR wavelengths). the location for many of the images in this article. and the camera's firmware—particularly the color interpolation and white balance algorithms in effect.• Deciduous tree leaves and grasses are almost always very bright in the NIR. Although made predominantly of NIR-transparent materials. as seen in the traffic signs at right. . Leafless deciduous branches are also quite bright. Water surfaces tend to be dark in the NIR. The upper sign's bright red markings are slightly brighter than their reflective off-white background but not quite as bright as the white background in the sign below. both of which start out bright white but approach transparency as trapped air escapes. Plant temperatures and pigments like chlorophyll havenothing to do with leaf reflectivity at NIR wavelengths. but internal structure differences are the prime suspect.
Representative color-mode digital IR samples are shown again in the table below. I have yet to see a transmission spectrum for one. The CCD thus puts a fixed limit on NIR input to the image at the long end of the spectrum. as chronicled above.Each camera layer puts its own stamp on the final IR image. • • • the external IR filter used. but we manage to peek under the hood below. The sections that follow focus on 3 critical camera-related layers. but they clearly vary widely and seemingly arbitrarily from camera to camera. while the external IR filter imposes a variable limit on NIR input at the short end.200 nm. depending on the camera. Page Index | Topic Index False Colors and Monochromes Color-mode digital IR images have a look and feel that varies with the IR filter and to a lesser extent with the camera used. and what we can surmise of their intertwined contributions to the final IR image. False Colors Rendered with Common IR Filters Kodak Wratten Filter 89b Hoya Equivalent 50% cut-off mark Transmissivity at 700-770 nm R72. The proprietary internal IR cut filters sensor manufacturers apply to their digital camera products remain shrouded in mystery. Silicon-based CCD and CMOS sensors are equally sensitive at visible and NIR wavelengths but abruptly lose all sensitivity at around 1. regardless of the camera used. The inner workings of camera firmwares also seem to be hush-hush. Black Boxes Solid information regarding the last 4 camera layers listed above is hard to come by. the white balance algorithm used. the Bayer pattern color filters applied to the CCD. RM72 720 nm Moderate 87 n/a 800 nm Low 87c n/a 850 nm Negligible . while images made with the deeper 87 filter tend to come out as grayscales or nearly so. The popular dark red R72 filter typically produces images with either a brick red and pale cyan or a red and magenta color scheme.
I've concluded that one must simultaneously consider what goes on in 2 functionally different NIR bands in order to understand the false colors seen in digital RGB images taken with IR filters: • • 700-770 nm. any color found in an NIR image is by definition false color. The red tinge typical of R72 skies bears this out: Shortwave NIR is heavily over-represented in what little NIR the atmosphere manages to scatter because scattering efficiency by air molecules falls off inversely with the 4th power of wavelength. I believe that this . of course. Shortwave NIR thus drives the false colors. as you'd expect with equal stimulation of all 3 sensel types by the remaining longwave NIR. hereafter referred to as longwave NIR Longwave NIR (770-1100 nm) stimulates all sensels equally because Bayer pattern filter dyes are uniformly transparent at those wavelengths for quantum mechanical reasons elaborated in the sidebar. as we'll see. Thus.3 firmware. Table Note: Images courtesy Carl Schofield. Things get even more interesting with the Wratten 87c (50% cut-off at 850 nm). which in many digital cameras produces blue monochromes rather than the grayscales one might expect. gray included. longwave IR primarily affects false-color saturations. Shortwave NIR (700-770 nm). green sensels a little and blue sensels minimally if at all. The shortest NIR wavelengths (in the 700-770 nm band) appear to drive most of the false color rendering. on the other hand. The samples above are representative of what camera firmwares tend to come up with when confronted with NIR scenes recorded in color. Color is. If you block most of the shortwave NIR with a deeper Wratten 87 IR filter (50% cut-off at 800 nm). all rights reserved. A digital camera is nevertheless compelled by its firmware to do something with the sensor data an IR filter generates. stimulates red sensels quite a bit. especially with shallow filters like theR72 (50% cut-off at 720 nm). Nikon CoolPix 950 with auto white balance and v. you get a near-perfect grayscale image.Shortwave NIR at 700-770 nm wavelengths appears to drive most of the false color seen in these digital IR samples. Since color is meaningless at NIR wavelengths. 1. How do these false colors arise? All available clues point to white balance algorithms and the NIR spectral properties of the Bayer pattern color filters covering the CCD sensels in single-CCD color digital cameras. an attribute of visible light alone. hereafter referred to as shortwave NIR 770-1100 nm. The Short Answer Based on several different lines of evidence.
At this point. In the absence of reflection. Overtones and combinations of these Mid-IR vibrations occur between 3000-1200 nm. Therefore.D. The complex air spaces found within deciduous leaves and fallen snow set up strong NIR reflections in just this manner. analytical chemist whose dissertation dealt with the use of NIR radiation in chemical analysis. a Ph. all of the color filter types on the CCD probably pass almost all of the short NIR radiation [at 770-1100 nm]. (Water vapor does have a very weak absorption band somewhere around 900 nm). Page Index | Topic Index Sidebar: Forbidden Absorptions In an earlier version of this section. Memphis.] With no suitable molecular energy gaps to fall into. just as they produce strong reflections off clear glass in the visible band. e-mailed me this compelling answer: In my work. —Andrew Fong. Andrew Fong. Shallow angles of incidence will promote reflection off NIR-transparent materials. The blue filters absorb some of the NIR radiation as a spill-over of their red-absorbing properties. there aren't many compounds which absorb any light at all between 1100-770 nm unless they are dyes specifically designed to absorb there. Therefore. Note that the . I wondered out loud about why digital IR images tend to be monochromatic. By the time you get to 1100-770 nm. especially with deeper IR filters like the 87 series. The short answer is that the CCD mask filters are all nearly equally transparent to short NIR radiation [at 770-1100 nm]. Basically. It is possible that the blue CCD mask filters absorb some of the light at the shortest end of the NIR band (an electronic absorption tail). this energy region does not happen to correspond with most molecular vibrations or electronic absorptions. longwave NIR transmission will dominate. but I have some knowledge of the NIR band around 1100-770 nm.reflects a slight blue bias built into most auto white balance algorithms to counter the anti-blue bias carried by NIR contamination in visible light digital images. longwave NIR photons at 770-1100 nm can be transmitted or reflected. most substances are fairly transparent to this short-wavelength NIR radiation [at 770-1100 nm]. Most molecular vibrations correspond with the Mid-IR [> 3000 nm]. TN USA [Text in square brackets added by editor for clarity. we generally use wavelengths greater than about 1200 nm to around 3000 nm. but they're seldom absorbed. or you can brace yourself for a slog through the arguments supporting the theory above. you can skip directly to a discussion of IR contamination in visible light images. these overtones and combinations of molecular vibrations become very weak (they are quantum-mechanically forbidden). However. Some larger dye molecules can be made to absorb there (an electronic type absorption).
Foliage and clouds reflect all NIR wavelengths equally but acquire a cyan cast from a white balance algorithm trying to compensate for an overall excess of red sensel stimulation. I believe that the sky takes on a reddish tone in the R72/89b sample above because the atmosphere scatters less longwave than shortwave NIR. At one time I wondered if it might occur with CCDs sporting CYGM (cyan. Why? Because the 87's 50% cutoff at 800 nm blocks both visible light and most of the color-generating . Andrew's explanation jibes with dpFWIW contributor Jay Scott's early observation that the red CCD filters in his Oly C-2020Z appear to pass shortwave NIR preferentially. as you might expect from 2 cameras built around the same 3. not at the visible-IR boundary at 700 nm. while the blue CCD filters preferentially pass longwave NIR. green. Page Index | Topic Index R72 False Colors The R72 produces images rendered in brick red and pale cyan tones by some cameras and in bright red to magenta colors by others. regardless of the camera. I have no hard data for shortwave NIR absorptions at 700-770 nm. which has become more and more common in recent cameras. the visible-IR boundary. Since Bayer pattern filters appear to have some differential effect on shortwave NIR (the 700-770 nm band).34MP CYMG CCD. blue) Bayer pattern filters. red. but these plots are also consistent with Jay's observations. those must be the wavelengths primarily responsible for the false colors typical of images taken with shallower IR filters (like the R72 and the 88a) with 50% transmissivities in the 720-750 nm range. What goes on in the undocumented 700-770 nm seems to be the key. magenta) rather than GRGB (green. green and blue sensors at 700 nm. See Don Ellis' IR gallery for some G1/R72 samples. which in turn preferentially stimulates the red sensels. Now we're ready tackle the false colors produced by some of the more popular IR filters. green and blue filters. It also jibes with Oly C-2020Z CCD spectral response plots showing ~70%. and grayscale is precisely what the Wratten 87 filter delivers. green. forbidden absorptions imply grayscale output from equally transparent red.forbidden NIR absorptions start at 770 nm. Todd Walker's Canon IS Pro90 R72 samples resemble Don's G1 R72s very closely. However. the brick and cyan R72 pattern suggests an overall excess of red sensel stimulation and a blue sensel stimulation deficit. presumably due to the red filter's relatively high transmissivity and the blue filter's electronic absorption tail at the shortest NIR wavelengths. the CYGM Canon G1 renders R72s in a purple-and-cyan color scheme similar to the brick-and-cyan scheme my GRGB Oly C-2020Z produces. ~10% and ~0% respective sensitivities for the red. yellow. To my mind. Page Index | Topic Index Wratten 87 Grays Beyond 770 nm. Allowed shortwave NIR absorptions in the 700-770 nm band will become important below. I don't have a ready explanation for the red and magenta R72 color scheme.
R72 or Wratten 87 images. These are the same NIR wavelengths blocked by the blue filter's electronic absorption tail in visible light work. 1. 1. Carl was surprised to find his previously grayscale B+W 093 (87c) images coming out as blue monochromes instead of grayscales. With a 50% transmissivity deep in the NIR at 850 nm. Interestingly.3 firmware. but the evidence pieced together so far is fairly compelling: White balance and color .shortwave NIR below 770 nm. Whatever else Nikon might have updated between v. I have no Wratten 87c to test. Mild red and green sensel stimulation by the small amount of shortwave NIR transmitted by the 87 offsets an apparent blue bias built into typical auto white balance algorithms for reasons I'm about to propose. Page Index | Topic Index White Balance Caught Blue-Handed If you're still skeptical of the role white balance plays in IR false colors. Page Index | Topic Index The Real Skinny? Given the camera manufacturers' reticence regarding firmware and internal IR cut filter details. as shown above.1 firmware in his Nikon CoolPix 950.1 and v. too. Carl Schofield routinely got pure grayscale images from hisWratten 87 and B+W 093 (Wratten 87c equivalent) filters with color recording. But when his camera came back from a factory repair with an unexpected upgrade to v. I get blue monochromes. The 87c thus deprives the red and green sensels of the shortwave NIR photons normally unavailable only to the blue sensels.3. consider this data point: Under the original v. To mind. but when I stack a hot mirror (IR cut) filter on top of my Wratten 87 to block out all remaining shortwave NIR. 1. My Oly C-2020Z handles R72 and Wratten 87 color images just like Carl's CoolPix 950. these observations point to a strong white balance input. the firmware change had no visible effect on his visible light. Page Index | Topic Index Wratten 87c Blues The blue monochromes typical of 87c filters provide important clues to the IR false color puzzle. we may never know for sure. A white balance algorithm conscious of NIR contamination and preprogrammed to boost blue sensels a bit to compensate for their normally reduced NIR stimulation would automatically add a touch of blue to the pure grayscale the 87c should otherwise have produced. white balance handling was one of the acknowledged firmware changes. the 87c absorbs virtually all of the color-generating shortwave NIR. 1.
IR contamination turns out to be an issue only in unusual circumstances. but just how we've managed to get off the hook on this score isn't all that clear. If anyone out there has solid information along these lines. the otherworldliness of many IR images raises a disturbing question: If my camera's IR-sensitive enough to take decent IR photographs.. IR sensitivity isn't all good news for digital photographers.com. please drop me an e-mail at dpfwiw@cliffshade. some of which are detailed in this section. In practice. For reasons touched upon above. IR-aware white balance algorithms. For those with more IRsensitive cameras. Find Something Else The threat of visible IR contamination would seem to be quite real and ubiquitous.. On this page.filter spectral properties in the NIR both play key roles in the false colors and monochromes that appear in digital IR images recorded in color. however. . shouldn't I be worried about IR contamination in my visible light work? The welcome short answer seems to be "seldom if ever". • • • • If You Need Something To Worry About. and if my NIR and visible light photos differ that much. I've come to attribute some of that good fortune to sophisticated. Page Index | Topic Index IR Contamination—the Other Side of the IR Coin Unfortunately. 2009 If You Need Something to Worry About. even with IRsensitive cameras like my Oly C-2020Z. Technical Note: Film cameras using ordinary films aren't subject to IR contamination because such films are negligibly sensitive to NIR. Find Something Else What Would IR Contamination Look Like? Hot Mirror Filters — A Cure Worse Than The Disease The Heliopan 8125 "Digital" IR/UV-Cut Filter Topic Index Last updated October 22. Detectable IR contamination turns out to be quite rare in digital photographs.
but how often do they pop up in your photographs? In setting up the Filter Test — Color Bias and Saturation in another dpFWIW article. Such objects emit thermal IR in the NIR band. You can count on IR contamination with any object that hot. contains both shortwave (700-770 nm) and longwave (770-1100 nm) NIR in abundance. particularly visibly dark NIR-bright objects like foliage. but I their arguments unconvincing. visit Peter iNova's dpreview. Otherwise. Theoretically. Sunlit objects should be subject to IR contamination. the contaminating NIR was emitted by a 60W bulb and reflected to the camera by a room temperature subject over a lamp-to-camera distance of ~20 inches. Nor does it tone down blown-out leaf highlights. but accurate renditions of foliage don't seem to be a problem for digital cameras. So. close-range incandescent lighting. The bluish sheen on its very hot heat reflector is no doubt thermal NIR. Situations like these are both rare and foreseeable. longwave contamination should add white to affected areas of the image. Red Bayer pattern filters are most transparent to shortwave NIR. forget about it. To see an example of IR contamination from a hot object. That would desaturate affected colors and might also contribute to overexposure and blooming. My Heliopan 8125 "Digital" UV/IR cut filter strongly attenuates longwave NIR. one would expect IR contamination to be most apparent in visible light digital photos of visibly dark but IR-bright objects like foliage. Many have tried to pin the common purple fringing artifact on IR contamination.Most convincing instances of IR contamination involve objects at or near incandescent temperatures. go ahead and worry about IR contamination when you're shooting very hot objects or shooting very near such objects. Longwave Contamination Since Bayer pattern filters are equally transparent to longwave NIR. I managed to create a related instance involving a close-up under hot.com infrared tutorial and scroll down to the first image of the burning gasfired radiant heater. but it doesn't visibly improve color saturation in my outdoor work. at least in my C-2020Z. Page Index | Topic Index What Would IR Contamination Look Like? Sunlight. Shortwave Contamination Shortwave NIR contamination should cause color shifts toward the red and might contribute to white balance failures as well. Purple fringing is primarily a high-order lens aberration. I have yet to see a compelling example of IR contamination in an outdoor shot containing objects at ordinary temperatures. . green filters are slightly transparent and blue filters least transparent. the most commonly encountered NIR source. but that was a very special circumstance unlikely to be encountered in the field. The 8125 did improve saturation in the Filter Test — Color Bias and Saturation described elsewhere on dpFWIW. Here. particularly in areas already close to overexposure.
especially indoors under incandescent light.I used to blame shortwave IR contamination for my camera's tendency to overexpose red flowers in bright sunlight. first. Fluorescent lights are dark in the infrared. The jury's still out on this one. Page Index | Topic Index . My Heliopan 8125 "Digital" UV/IR cut filter does nothing to help these blown-out reds. and all of them turned out to be infrared dark. Then again. and now I'm convinced that it's sometimes a serious problem. Page Index | Topic Index Testing for IR Contamination To get a handle on potential IR contamination. Suddenly I'm in the market for a hot mirror.. and (3) an object that was black and photographed blue under incandescent light and nearly black with xenon flash. So I went around the house and collected (1) an object that was black and photographed black. but now I'm not so sure. My images are contaminated with infrared light. If you lay awake at night worrying about IR contamination. press on to learn about two different filters you might use to block it. I reasoned that. Object (1) turned out to be infrared dark. (2) an object that was black and photographed blue. Otherwise. flower colors can be tough. any big color shift in a black object that doesn't reflect much visible light almost has to be due to unwanted sensitivity to invisible light. dpFWIW contributor Jay Scott performed a clever and interesting "black object test" with his Oly C-2020Z and a Hoya R72 filter: I ran some tests last night. Flash is infrared-bright. I suspect this may be what makes purple flowers so often rendered as blue. And incandescent lights are very bright in the infrared.. skip ahead to the References and Links and visit some of the IR gallerieslisted there. and in the worst case it makes a big difference. I still haven't done tests to see how big a difference it makes in typical cases. if there is unwanted sensitivity. and the 8125's much less effective against shortwave than longwave NIR. the cure could well turn out to be worse than the disease. but if it's going to take a hot mirror to cure IR contamination. a black object is what will show it most. but it is much bluer than incandescent light. while (2) is bright over a wider spectrum. I found a bunch of other black objects that photographed black. The most common color problem I've seen with my camera is for black cloth to occasionally be rendered blue. so I infer that (3) is only bright at longer infrared wavelengths. and second.. Objects (2) and (3) turned out to be infrared bright. To see a hot mirror in action. It hardly ever pays to disagree with Jay. I'm convinced. so I put them under fluorescent light and all three photographed black. check out this filter test.
there's no shortage of longwave NIR in this sunny day at the park. Several months of casual shooting with the 8125 confirm the story told by the spectrum.Hot Mirror Filters — A Cure Worse Than The Disease External hot mirror filters are the primary line of defense in what I now see as a largely theoretical battle against IR contamination. The cheap no-name hot mirror I use with my Tiffen 18A UV pass filter blocks a significant amount of visible red light along with the IR. it's about as ineffective against shortwave NIR as commonly available UV cut filters are against UV-A. Most of the hot mirrors for sale at B&H Photo are very expensive. as illustrated in the sample images below. no filter. but consumer-grade digital camera users seldom if ever do. Control image. . but they cause visible artifacts as well. which claims to block both UV and IR while freely passing all visible wavelengths. Heliopan 8125 Outdoor Test Wratten 87 IR pass filter image documenting the test scene NIR content. The 87 blocks all visible light and some shortwave NIR as well. one of likeliest IR contamination scenarios. Most consumer-grade cameras come with internal hot mirrors already installed on their sensors — the internal IR cut filters discussed so many times before. I have yet to see an outdoor benefit on the IR or UV side — even with sun-drenched foliage. A typical hot mirror transmission spectrum can be viewed here. that's where you'd be most likely to see it. that's not a problem. the 8125 strongly attenuates longwave NIR and UV-B and UV-C. but this hot mirror is no viable cure for IR contamination in visible light work. As its complete transmission spectrum clearly shows. In fact. Page Index | Topic Index The Heliopan 8125 "Digital" UV/IR Cut Filter One of the more promising IR cut filters would seem to be the multicoated Heliopan No. Their dichroic (dielectric) coatings reflect rather than absorb IR. Note the visibly dark but very IR-bright deciduous trees. As you can see. In UV photography. as illustrated here. If the 8125 were effective against IR contamination. The result is an ugly greenish cast in visible light images. but it passes a good bit of shortwave NIR and some near UV-A as well. That makes the 8125 a very leaky defense against IR and UV contamination. 8125 Digital. and they may well need them. The professional photographers who buy them work with digital backs for 35 mm and and medium-format cameras.
• • • IR Galleries IR Information Suppliers Topic Index (See also the home page links.) Last updated October 22. So. I don't see that it did. the 8125's strong longwave NIR attenuation should have improved color saturation in the test shots above. despite its strong longwave NIR attenuation. but I don't expect to encounter a similar situation in the field anytime soon. Table Notes: All images are 800x600 JPEGs taken with a monopod-supported C-2020Z using fixed sunny white balance and in-camera sharpening with no manual post-processing other than downsampling from 1600x1200.) If anyone has solid evidence to prove me wrong here.Heliopan 8125 "Digital" UV/IR cut filter produces no visible effect. 2009 . On this page. Page Index | Topic Index References and Links The internet is loaded with material pertinent to IR photography. (In 2Q 2000. mine cost $79.. and that the 8125's cost/benefit ratio is far above recommendable levels. I conclude that IR contamination is at worst an insignificant problem with sunlit outdoor subjects well below incandescent temperatures. To be fair the 8125 did manage to improve color saturation substantially in the Filter Test — Color Bias and Saturation described elsewhere on dpFWIW. Its UV attenuation plays no role here. I'd love to see it. in the absence of a detectable benefit in worst-case outdoor photos like the test images above on an unusually IR-sensitive camera like my Oly C-2020Z. Nor did the 8125 help with the substantial red over-saturation my then C-2000Z tended to impart on reddish flowers taken in bright sunlight with auto white balance. If NIR contamination were truly a practical concern in outdoor digital visible light photography.. but the best sites are the IR galleries.95 on special phone order from B&H Photo.
Kleptography — Don Ellis' impressive gallery of Canon G1 images.— dpFWIW contributor Carl Schofield's gorgeous IR site featuring his extensive gallery of CoolPix 950 IR landscapes with many CoCam R72 examples. Light Measurement Handbook—Alex Ryer's thorough. Infrared Photography on the C-2000Z—Tony Collins' worthwhile IR contribution. behavior and measurement of light. practical as always. Page Index | Topic Index IR Information Kodak's infrared photography tutorial—this easy-to-read science fair primer is brimming with practical information on film-based grayscale and color IR photography. visit these worthwhile IR photography sites: Beyond Red. Jens Roesner's digital IR site—still under development but already brimming with valuable practical information on IR work with Oly digitals and the Minolta Dimage 7. well-illustrated and surprisingly readable on-line treatise on the properties. Invisible Light — Andy Finney's comprehensive IR site. most of which translates directly to the digital side. .. and some valuable practical information as well. and to learn how to capture it there. Infrared Photography FAQ—Clive Warren's film-oriented but fact-filled compendium of IR details. Light and Color—a fabulous optics primer developed for microscopists but fully applicable to digital photography. Infrared Digital Images — Eric Cheng's technically-oriented how-to site and gallery. Digital Infrared Gallery — Paul Rodian's IR site. Photo Tidbits—Andrzej Wrotniak's digital photography site is full of IR information. Don shot the IR section with an R72.IR Galleries To see just how surreal the world can look in the near IR. The Java simulations alone are worth the trip. with some beautiful samples to boot.. including sensitivity comparisons for many Oly cameras. featuring some very interesting false-color IR tricks and Hoya R72 examples. a great eye and a lot of imagination.Why a Color May Not Reproduce Accurately—a Kodak Technical Data bulletin.
with an emphasis on IR and UV photography. I'd seriously consider giving up. The Filter Connection — a good source for IR and other exotic filters. Willem-Jan Markerink's Photo Homepage—a decidedly eclectic site with lots of information on filters and photographic optics. eBay — the IR aficionados' best bet for legendary IR cameras like the Oly C-2020Z and the Nikon CoolPix 950. Best of all. Page Index | Topic Index Suppliers B&H Photo — if they don't have it. including lens hoods and multicoated filter cleaners.Why a Color May Not Reproduce Accurately—a Kodak Technical Data bulletin. or can't get it for you. filter information and filter-related camera accessories. you even can discuss your filter purchases with a real live knowledgeable human! . Neat Image — sophisticated yet affordable noise reduction software with few equals.
Infrared Hotspots: Lenses are usually coated with anti-reflection coatings to minimize the effects of light bouncing inside the camera. no barrel distortion. The optimal focus point in infrared is slightly different in infrared. Green and Red (400nm to 700nm) colors all come into focus in the same spot. For instance 700nm may register in a slightly different spot than 1100nm light which will cause a loss of sharp focus. Aliasing occurs when the visual pattern from the image matches a multiple of the spacing of the pixels on the sensor. 1: Camera: All cameras are designed to focus sharply in the visible range. When we remove the ICF. Another term for the AAF is a Blur Filter because the filter is blurring the high frequency visual information from reaching the sensor. The lens may perform much differently in the infrared range. You can shoot at any F-Stop with any lens. the camera. Some of our customers have used our IR+Visible converted cameras for normal photography because of the increased resolution possible. Keep in mind that lenses are not designed for the infrared. the AAF is also removed. This means that the camera will be susceptible to Moiré patterns under certain conditions such as photographing a screen door. so you should experiment with your lenses to learn how to get the best performance from your lens. Older lenses often had a red dot on the focusing ring that was the point the user was to turn the lens after visible focus was achieved when using infrared film. If you understand the IR camera. Most current digital SLR cameras incorporate the Anti-Aliasing Filter (AAF) with the IR cut filter in a 3 glass sandwich. When we modify a camera. Learn what works for your camera and lens combinations first. we open the camera up. When a repeating image pattern matches the sensor pixel spacing. Light may bounce off the silver colored image sensor and/or between lens elements. 2: Sensor: All digital color cameras and camcorders have an IR Cut Filter (ICF) in the optical path because the image sensor color dies that separate color open up in the infrared range to varying degrees. replace the ICF with a 715nm IR filter and modify the Auto Focus function so that the camera focuses correctly in the infrared band. the worse the problem usually is. The wider the angle. Lens designers rarely care about infrared reflection problems since the ICF is blocking IR from the sensor. Infrared hotspots will usually be worse at small apertures (High F-Stops) and at full zooms on zoom lenses. you will be able to take better photographs. It is simply that the lens was not designed for the infrared. In general. 10-22mm zoom) can have out of focus pictures around the corners. camera or conversion. Infrared Registration: Lenses are designed to that the Blue. Another way to achieve correct focus is to move the sensor in the camera backwards to compensate for the IR focal shift. hot spots and such in the visible range. The system may perform much differently when modified to take infrared pictures. Getting The Sharpest Picture Before doing serious work with your camera in infrared. you get doubling and subtracting effects that give you a Moiré patterns. our observations are: . For landscape photographers. Most lenses today have omitted the infrared focus dot. Basically. Infrared light from 700nm to 1100nm may not focus as sharply. Common distortions in infrared: Barrel distortion: Wide angle lenses (e. and lens interactions better. You can see how the color dies open up in the visible and infrared ranges Here. To start. you should take some test pictures using various lenses. this is a tradeoff well worth making since they would rather get the sharpest image possible from the camera. remove the ICF . We have seen excellent visible light lenses perform poorly in infrared which is not a fault of the lens. we modify the camera so that the camera will focus correctly in IR when using a standard lens focusing in visible light. The camera is modified in a Class 100 clean room with ionized air and static control surfaces. sensor and lens were designed to function well as a system in the visible light range.g. 3: Lens: Camera lenses are designed to be sharp with correct color registration. To minimize IR hotspots. sensor. the idea is to introduce enough blur to the image that any repeating patterns are wider than the pixel spacing on the sensor. On our infrared enabled cameras.Digital SLR Camera Notes IR photography using a modified digital camera is more complex than most people realize. zoom setting and F-Stops. The upside of removing the AAF is that the camera will take slightly sharper pictures at the expense of possible moiré patterns. shoot with a wider aperture and wider lens.
Kodak has already stopped the manufacture of CIR film in some sizes such as 70mm.smugmug. If you have a lens with barrel distortion in the infrared. The red and green channel are not open in the IR range. The red channel is the most open in the infrared followed by the green and lastly the blue channel. When the film is developed. if you add a blue blocking filter. blue and green channels see in the visible range. Try shooting with -1 or -2 stops of exposure compensation. the blue channel will see only IR. your sharpest picture will usually occur at the widest or 1 to 2 F-Stops from the widest aperture setting. Image Size and Format: Shooting RAW will maximize picture information. blue and green channels also see in the IR to varying degrees. but the Canon cameras are capable. there is not much of a solution other than using a different lens. Kodak CIR film has three color emulsions: red. Some cameras such as the Fuji won't allow such a white balance setting. such as a Wratten 12. the small apertures also increase Lens Diffraction. desaturate and sharpen the image. blue and green. Wide Angle Lenses: Please test any wide angle lenses. users will typically optimize the color channels. it will give you close to a black and white picture.Aperture: Contrary to common knowledge. White Balance: Try setting a custom white balance with a piece of white paper in outdoor sun. the red and green are normal visible color while the blue contains the IR information. Look especially around the corners to see if you are experiencing barrel distortion. Furthermore. the IR needs to be blocked on a normal camera so that images look normal. . any dust spots. Exposure Compensation: Infrared data comes in primarily on the Red Channel Because of this. IR glass imperfections will be much more visible. This is why a normal. A great tutorial on IR post processing is Andy William's technique at http://dgrin. While this won't increase sensor resolution. Our modified cameras are designed to work at all F-Stops. In Photoshop. Only use small apertures if necessary. and the red. Please see the graph below that shows a typical image sensor response.com/gallery/1111417 A excellent source for IR photography and post processing is from Lloyd Chambers Guide to Digital Infrared False Color IR We have had many people inquiring about how to emulate the Kodak Color IR film (CIR) and the discontinued Kodak CIR digital camera. cameras will sometimes over expose the red channel. stock camera has an IR Cut Filter (ICF). Color digital cameras and camcorders that we modify to see IR+Visible light can see IR and visible light simultaneously. The blue channel is open to visible blue and opens up again in the infrared in the 700-800nm range. Processing is best done afterwards on a computer using software such as Adobe Photoshop. The red. Because the blue is open to the IR. While small apertures give you the greatest depth of field. Kodak CIR film is being phased out.
The second picture can be done with an IR filter. The first picture should be using our IR blocking filter XNiteCC1. the images are usually brought into Photoshop. Simulated CIR Images from a Digital Camera S.Note that the green and blue channels are a subset of the red channel. users prefer to hide the red image of the visible picture and paste the red from the infrared image into the red channel. Often. This duplicates the Kodak CIR look. After the two images are acquired. It is possible to duplicate CIR photography with either two cameras using different filters or one camera taking two shots using different filters. Sam Outcalt has outlined his method for generating CIR photographs below. The blue and green channels duplicate information in the red channel while the red channel has the greatest information in the IR range (700nm to 1000nm). Outcalt .I. Some customers have created a rig that holds two of the same cameras linked with a simultaneous shutter release. it is currently not possible to duplicate CIR film with one picture. Because the red and green channels open up in the IR. but the most common choice is out XNite715 715nm filter. The normal image blue layer is hidden and the red layer from the IR picture is copied and pasted into the normal image as the new blue channel. The two cameras are setup so that one takes a normal picture and the other takes an IR picture often using a 715nm filter. This same technique can be used with one IR+Visible camera set on a tripod.
.Begin with a typical tripod stabilized visible light image V. Do not disturb the tripod so the scene is a duplicate of the visible light image. Remove the red from this image by setting the output level of red to zero yielding then rescale the RGB histogram yielding Vbg. Begin a parallel process by collecting image R with a Hoya R72 deep red filter over the camera lens.
close and reopen the CIR image. The CIR image will be dark so the histogram should be rescaled RGB level adjusted to produce an image with pleasing brightness and contrast. . Mix layer Rp on background Vgb then adjust the opacity to near 50% producing a CIR Image. Save.Remove the blue and green from this image by setting blue and green output levels to zero and rescaling the red yielding a pure red image Rp.
Rescaling is simply the process of expanding the histogram range to cover the entire range of output levels (0-255). Color output is set to zero by moving lower output levels right slider to zero. The image manipulations were accomplished using only the <Levels> and <Layers> controls within Adobe Photoshop Elements.This image is a crude simulation of images collected using CIR positive transparency film with IR enhancement filter. In the image above. There is a shift from red orange to pale orange as draught stress increases decreasing the IR reflectance of chlorophyll. . Arizona during the period of drought stress which precedes the onset of the summer monsoon. the bright red orange vegetation reflectance along the ridgeline is produced by the irrigated of lawn trees. The following telephoto image was collected in late June of 2006 near Phoenix .
. At “lawn” scale note the plants in the middle foreground are on a drip irrigation system compared to the trees in the background.Note the pronounced down slope transition from bright orange on the irrigated lawn to the down slope natural vegetation.
was divided into the rainbow spectrum with a prism. Hershel noticed that the temperature was rising higher near the red end of the spectrum. the sun beam contains one more different emission with strong energy. has the IR model in its proposition.Discovering Infrared Photography In 5 Steps 1. . A narrow beam of light coming through the hole in thick curtains. But the thermometer. IR Filters In the beginning we should mention that it's almost impossible to dive into the mysterious world of infraredphotography without IR filters. besides the visible light. also was showing the high temperature. picture bydoc_snyder69 2. which produces filters. which had been put aside. it means "beyond the red color". almost in darkness. Putting down thermometers into different parts of the spectrum. History In 1800 the English astronomerWilliam Hershelcarried out experiments with light in his lab. Almost every company. He called these invisible rays infrared. The astronomer made a conclusion that.
picture byeyetwist(nikon 8700with B+W 089 filter) 3. Here is thehomemade infrared filter tutorial.Here are some widespread models: • • • • • • • B + W 092 HELIOPAN RG 715 COKIN 89B HAMA IR HOYA RM-72 . HOYA RM-90 TIFFEN 87 B + W 093 They all fit for IR shooting because they let pass the rays from 720 nm and longer. you can make it yourself. Your Camera In order to define if your camera fits the IR shooting. So if your camera is sensitive to IR rays you'll see the light spot on your display and you can start IR shooting experiments. point any remote control to your camera lens in the dark room. There are also specialinfrared cameras. . It's commonly known that remote control function is based on the IR emission. If you don't want to buy an expensive infrared filter.
it's lighting is very contrasting . so called "blue hours". And it's very uneasy to shoot during the daytime. Foliage. will be very spectacular. 4.so you will lose information in lights and shadows. illuminated brightly. But if you are the happy owner of IR filter. • • • You don't need to darkenthe skywithNeutral Density (ND) filter.Infrared Shooting Technique Usually alandscape photographer works during special hours. because the bright sun is the main source of IR rays. . When the sun is exactly above you. fish-eye lens. In the morning or in the evening the sun beams draw amazing long shadows and add the volume to the shot.byloupiote (Old Skool). because it will be almost black. you definitely won't be bored in the afternoon. The textures will be revealed nicely. 850nm Infrared-Pass Filter with theSonyF828 in NightShot (Infrared) mode.
You should also cover the viewfinder to avoid the additional overexposure. if you aren't shootin in RAW (you can easily change white balance preferences in any of RAW-converters). 2.DSLR camerashave some problems with sighting and sharpening.byC-HAD 5. as it will be much easier to get an appropriate result in infrared post processing. It takes into account only rays of visible spectrum. 1. So you may focus with the help of a windowed distance scale. as IR filters are non-transparent. . 5. shoot. It's rather troublesome to do focusing with the IR filter. matching it with the distance scale. Increase Depth Of Field(DOF) with the aperture value close to f/18-22. which is the topic of our next article. finally. 3.Ideal WB will be set on the illuminated leaves. Then screw on the IR filter and. Use it. 6. Set your camera ona tripod. controlling the histogram (especially in the lights). Tips for DSLR cameras Unlike usual digital cameras. pointing the focus a bit closer than a real distance to the shooting object. There is an IR focusing mark on some lenses. do sighting and framing. 7. 4. Take several shots with exposure bias value in 1-2 eV. Don't relay on autofocus. while IR rays are refracted differently. Pay attention to the white balance.
byDisGuyLa HOYA RM72 filter and Photoshop. White Balance(WB)is .com/tips/article_Discovering+Infrared+Photography+In+5+Steps. you've already read aboutInfrared Shooting Processand have taken several infrared shots and now ready to post process them in the editor.shotaddict. adjusted during the shooting process or in RAW-converter. Read more:http://www.html#ixzz2R3WcXP2v How To Post Process Your Infrared Digital Photos So. and you may get the next variants of images.
First. 1. brightness is kept in the red channel.in the blue one. On the right upper image WB was set on the leaves in RAW-converter. sharpness. As a rule. Two other photos are combined with two upper photos with the help of channels changing. .in the green channel and noise.Left upper image is converted from RAW-converter without WB adjusting. but of course different variants are possible. open your image in Photoshop and study the channels.
Image -> Adjustments -> Auto levels or Shift+Ctrl+L 3. go to Image -> Levels (or Ctrl+L) and move the histogram sliders.the original infrared imageand the edited one 2. for example clouds. achieving the acceptable tonal range. Then. After that you can apply Auto Levels option to the image. . Also use the white point picker to point the areas that you know are white.
4. Than you go to the Blue channel and set 0% for blue color and 100% for red color. . It means you choose the Red channel and set 0% for red color and 100% for blue color. Here you should make the replacement for Red and Blue Channels. The next step is Channel Mixer.
Then we apply Shadow/Highlight to align the tonal range of the image with the settings on the picture.5. otherwise your image will look unnatural. But don't go too far with that. . It's recommended to put Radius about 250-350 px.
Add an adjustment layer Hue/Saturation. you can still change the sliders position in Channel Mixer. b. a. Black&White IR Image Editing I. . After that you can tint your image according to your needs. until you find the required colors.If you are not satisfied with the result.using any possible method.Open your image in the 100% scale. • • You also can work with Saturation in any way to change your image as you like. If you increase Sharpness your image will be effective. Infrared Post Processing Tips: • Due to the long shutter speed the Red Channel appears to be very noisy. go to Channel Mixer and change the settings.There's also an easy way to get a black and white photo. searching the value. c. AfterLevelsadjustment. having ticked the Monochrome option.Move the slider to the right (to the blue color). when the noise is less visible (Hue is about +15 to +24). You can adjust the sky color to become clearer.
achieving the acceptable tonal range. Here's what you need to do: 1.change the histogram.II. 2. not forgetting about the white balance setting. Then go toImage -> Levels(ctrl+L). . Point any green leaf with a white picker.Convertyour photo in the RAW-converter.The second way is a bit more complicated and is mostly used with the shots in the RAW format.
3. Transfer your photo in the LAB profile and combine the channels in the Apply Image box just as you like. .
Read more:http://www.com/tips/article_How+To+Post+Process+Your+Infrared+Digital+Photos.shotaddict. Get back to the RGB profile and carry out the final editing by the Levels and Shadow/Highlight tools.4.html#ixzz2R3W1RLjS .
is to neutralize the white balance. The first step that I do in RAW.• • • • • • Tutorials Gear Reviews Book Reviews Challenges Galleries Forums Slideshow Digital Grin > Tutorials > Photo Manipulation > Infrared Post-Processing gallery pages: 1 By Andy. Here we have opened a RAW file in Adobe Camera Raw. . Note the histogram above. if taken with a traditional 72nm filter. after I use the grey-dropper (white balance tool in ACR) and click on a neutral grey area. will look something like this. Your IR image. it really helps the exposure. and then here.
Or. you can leave it. you'll want to do Channel Mixer. and modify the red & green channels. if you wish. desaturate in RAW. . If you haven't gone to B&W.You can now. Check the monochrome box. and go B&W in Photoshop.
Then New Color Fill Layer.. you will be pleased with the results! Let's add some Luminosity Toning. Cmd-Shift-~ (PC: Ctrl-Shift-~) to select the luminosity.Give Photoshop's Auto Levels a try. choose your color (I like chocolate brown sometimes..) .
and you're done! gallery pages: 1 Photo Website Hosting by SmugMug Pro · Login · Contact · Help · Portions © 2013 SmugMug.Change the layer blend mode to "Color" and lower the opacity to taste. Available Feeds . I like 15-20%. Inc. Some sharpening.
swap the red and blue channels in channel mixer i. 11:33 a. blue 100% red and zero blue and red 100% blue and zero red. Here is an extract from the Advanced Camera Services web site in the UK which I hope will clarify these points for some people and set them on the road for further exploration of IR. two basic steps I use are 1. using selective colour . Rouge Valley Andrew Miller .go to magnenta and reduce to zero or near zero to get the white foilage. 11:29 a. google the subject. 2. 2011. 2011. Apr 20. Colours & white balance .Here's a tutorial http://www.e. Mark Thomas .com/tutorials/infrared-photoshop-basics Mark Thomas . Do not forget that you can write the process as an Action in Photoshop and save it and run it automatically if you wish.m. there are many good workflows out there.m. 01:18 p. Apr 20.lifepixel. 2011. here is a recent IR shot. Apr 22.m.
using this mode will eliminate colour artifacts. Select Black. When using the Colour mode. Post-processing of IR images Open your IR images in Adobe Photoshop.Using Auto White Balance (AWB). False colour can be removed/reduced by shooting images with Custom White Balance. Slide the Cyan to a positive percentage. Using Custom White Balance (CWB) measured on sun-illuminated grass/leaves (a ubiquitous available midtone). To obtain a yellow-tint: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. and may strengthen the monochromatic appearance in IR images. Colour mode with AWB Colour mode with CWB B&W mode with AWB (unavailable on some cameras) B&W mode with CWB (unavailable on some cameras) More false colours can happen with other white balance settings such as Tungsten or Fluorescent. Select Neutrals. slide your Red percentage to 0% and Blue to 100%. Slide the Yellow to a positive percentage. random spots of colour (colour artifacts) may occur in images. some digital cameras may produce IR images with a strong yellowish/reddish/brownish colour cast known as false colour. there are 4 possible combinations of photographic modes to shoot infrared images. This is due to the characteristics of the imager and processing algorithms. If the camera has Black-and-White mode. To enhance whites/highlights: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. You can still further tweak the colours to your desired effect. To obtain a cyan-tint: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. Select Black. DO NOT FORGET - . Experiment with the Method Relative or Absolute. IR images tend to appear more monochromatic. Select Red Channel in Channel Mixer." I hope these simple steps help you to explore Infrared further. Slide the Black to a negative percentage to enhance whites/highlights. Click Image > Adjustments > Channel Mixer. Postprocessing in Adobe Photoshop (or similar) is required to remove/reduce this false colour effect. slide your Blue percentage to 0% and Red to 100%. Generally. Click Image > Adjustments > Auto Contrast if your images are underexposed due to the filter. The basic process is done. Now select Blue Channel in Channel Mixer.
some digital cameras may produce IR images with a strong yellowish/reddish/brownish colour cast known as false colour. there are 4 possible combinations of photographic modes to shoot infrared images. Click Image > Adjustments > Channel Mixer. IR images tend to appear more monochromatic. Generally. Select Red Channel in Channel Mixer.m. Colours & white balance Using Auto White Balance (AWB). slide your Red percentage to 0% and Blue to 100%. When using the Colour mode.6. Postprocessing in Adobe Photoshop (or similar) is required to remove/reduce this false colour effect. Click Image > Adjustments > Auto Contrast if your images are underexposed due to the filter. False colour can be removed/reduced by shooting images with Custom White Balance. 2011. and may strengthen the monochromatic appearance in IR images. This is due to the characteristics of the imager and processing algorithms. Post-processing of IR images Open your IR images in Adobe Photoshop. Custom WB. Nikon D100 converted for IR by Advanced Camera Services UK) followed the normal post process above and then had a NikSoftware Tonal Contrast filter applied : Andy M. using this mode will eliminate colour artifacts. Now select Blue . Here is an extract from the Advanced Camera Services web site in the UK which I hope will clarify these points for some people and set them on the road for further exploration of IR. 01:23 p. random spots of colour (colour artifacts) may occur in images. (Try it on a JPEG and then add other filters if you like This shot (JPEG AF-s 17-35 mm Nikkor.you can use these steps in either RAW or JPEG. Do not forget that you can write the process as an Action in Photoshop and save it and run it automatically if you wish. Colour mode with AWB Colour mode with CWB B&W mode with AWB (unavailable on some cameras) B&W mode with CWB (unavailable on some cameras) More false colours can happen with other white balance settings such as Tungsten or Fluorescent. Apr 22. Andrew Miller . 19 mm. 1/125 f5. Using Custom White Balance (CWB) measured on sun-illuminated grass/leaves (a ubiquitous available midtone). If the camera has Black-and-White mode.
You can still further tweak the colours to your desired effect. To enhance whites/highlights: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. DO NOT FORGET you can use these steps in either RAW or JPEG. Slide the Cyan to a positive percentage. Slide the Black to a negative percentage to enhance whites/highlights. To obtain a cyan-tint: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. To obtain a yellow-tint: Click Image > Adjustments > Selective Colour. Select Black. 19 mm. Nikon D100 converted for IR by Advanced Camera Services UK) followed the normal post process above and then had a Nik Software Tonal Contrast filter applied : This works for converted cameras and those with filters on . Select Neutrals." I hope these simple steps help you to explore Infrared further. Custom WB.Channel in Channel Mixer. Andy M.6.Experiment with the sliders to see what happens. 1/125 f5. Slide the Yellow to a positive percentage. Experiment with the Method Relative or Absolute. The basic process is done. . Select Black. slide your Blue percentage to 0% and Red to 100%. (Try it on a JPEG and then add other filters if you like This shot (JPEG AF-s 17-35 mm Nikkor.
IR . Bodnant Gardens .Pergola.
you’ll learn how to process those red eerie images into spectacular false color Infrared photographs to be proud of. . Bear in mind there are many other colors you can process IR photos into that look equally stunning. Processing Processing infrared (IR) photos is as much a creative process as any other genre of photography.An In-Depth Guide to Infrared Photography: Processing Chris Swarbrick on Jul 31st 2012 with 17 Comments Tutorial Details • Program: Adobe Photoshop/Lightroom • Difficulty: Intermediate • Estimated Completion Time: 1 hour In part two of our infrared tutorial. you will learn how to gradually eke out more detail from your RAW shots. giving it a yellow and aqua hue. and color them to taste. Using Photoshop and Lightroom. I’m going to show you how to process a false-color IR photograph. and I will also show you an alternative. such a Red/Blue. Let’s begin. but certain formulas can be applied in IR photography to ensure you get some jaw-dropping photographs.
Alternative Processing Styles. as they will allow for greater white balance adjustments as standard. as once the profile has been created. which is especially important to obtain the correct colors. I would first recommend you download DNG Profile Editor from Adobe Labs (free after registering). allowing you to cool the image down significantly more. This program allows you to create a profile for your camera to use in Camera Raw and Lightroom. This can be done in Lightroom in the export pop-up menu. 1. it can be applied to any other RAW format. Alternatively. still not as much as a custom profile however. Converting To DNG To process your shots. first convert one of your RAW files to DNG format. or by using the Export to DNG command after right-clicking a photo. or any other program that accepts these types of profiles. It also allows you to go beyond the normal white balance value thresholds. . This will only need to be done once. To create a profile. You do not need to convert all your photos to DNG format. you can also use Nikon View/Capture and Canon DPP.
2. It should make your bright red shot turn into a brown/orange color. The bottom set of the 4 slider sets. allows you to alter the white balance of the image. Scroll the temperature slider all the way to the left (cooler) side.The DNG option. run the program and open your newly converted DNG shot by going: File > Open DNG Image After it opens. called White Balance Calibration. Calibrating The Profile After DNG Profile Editor has downloaded. . click on the “Color Matrices” tab.
2.Sliding the temperature scale to the coolest point. Exporting The Profile .
In this example. 3. I will use Lightroom. On Windows 7. go-to: File > Export [Name of camera] profile. make sure you enter your Windows profile name inside [NAME-OF-USER].DCP file to this directory. .” The file path and file format of the profile. Windows 7: C:\Users\[NAME-OF-USER]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\CameraRaw\CameraProfiles For Mac: /Library/Application Support/Adobe/CameraRaw/CameraProfiles: Give it as sensible name. Activating The Profile in Lightroom or Camera Raw Now open Lightroom or Camera Raw.Now. and save the . but the steps are interchangeable as the interface and controls are almost identical. Remove the square brackets too. such as “[Camera name] 720nm IR Profile.
Navigate to the Camera Calibration Tab. Under the Profile heading, click the Adobe Standard dropdown and select your new profile. Scrolling back up to the white balance slider under the Basic tab, you will notice you now have a much larger threshold for changing the White Balance.
Activating the profile.
4. Adjusting White Balance
Scroll the temperature slider to around the middle of the bar and scroll the tint to around the same place, adding a little bit more magenta. See the screenshot for some idea of the color to aim for. You can also use the eyedropper to aid correcting the white balance
Correcting the white balance.
5. Other Exposure adjustment
Now adjust the rest of the photo to suit your vision. Be sure to add a lot of contrast and boost the blacks as IR photos can look a little flat straight out of the camera. Using the “Tone Curve” is also a great way to add contrast and tonality to your images. Saturating colors to around +20 on the slider gives a great punch to the colors, but don’t go too far, otherwise they will clip. Save back to RAW (original in the export menu), remembering to change file names so you don’t overwrite your original photo.
Adjusting other parameters and exporting back to RAW format.
6. Channel Mixing in Photoshop
Now import the image into Photoshop. Here you need to make adjustments to the Channels, Levels and HSL. First, to get the aqua sky and yellow foliage, go to the Channel Mixer: Image > Adjustments > Channel Mixer. Now swap the red channel with the blue channel, and the blue with the red. In the Output Channel, select the color red. In the Source Channels, set the red channel to 0%, and the blue channel to 100%. Then select the blue channel in the Output Channel drop down. In the Source Channels, set the red channel to 100%, and the blue channel to 0% and hit OK.
7. Levels & Other Adjustments
Next go to Image > Adjustments > Levels Select the red channel and reduce the Highlights slider around 30 points to bring out some red in the foliage. Then drop the Mid-Tones slider (slide to the left) and increase the value around 20 points to bring out even more color. Select the blue channel. Increase the Mid-Tones value (slide to the right) and decrease the value around 30 points. Then increase the Blacks slider by around 10 points. You should end up with an aqua sky and yellow foliage. If you want to play around with the colors, go to Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation. Play with the hue slider to get some really striking combinations of colors, and adjust the saturation to suit. This is your opportunity to go wild, be creative and make your photograph truly unique.
Adjusting the levels.
8. An Alternative Processing Style in
Another processing style to try is to make foliage pure white, and leave the strong aqua and blue tones in the image. This makes the image really stand out and gives the photo a haunted sense. You can do this after doing the steps above, or for speed, just simply start this step straight after you mix the channels as detailed above. After Channel Swapping, go to Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation. Select the reds Channel from the drop-down box. (The default value is Master). Now, click on the eyedropper icon (circled in the picture) and select a red/magenta/brown area of the photo. Use the Saturation slider to de-saturate some of the tones in the image. Should any color be left in this red/magenta/orange/brown tonal range, select the Eyedropper icon with the + symbol next to it (circled in the picture). This adds to the colors which have already been selected. Remember to adjust exposure and contrast after this step to suit to make it pop.
Alternative processing style.
Conclusion and Final thoughts
So you know what to look for when buying, how to set up your camera, and how to take and process those flat monotone images into something special that stands out. The last thing I can suggest is to experiment with settings and subjects, and you’ll find that not only will you progress you skills in IR photography, but you will find yourself shooting in IR a lot more often than you thought. It can become quite addicting because of how fun it is! Be sure to post some links to your shots in the comments below. Thanks for reading this tutorial. I hope you enjoyed it and learnt a lot.
The final image.
How Does Digital Infrared Work? March 8th, 2006 | Add a Comment 0 in Share How is it that you can put an infrared filter on the front of effectively all digital cameras and get an IR image? In this article we set out to examine how this happens and how to interpret the results. All digital image sensors are sensitive to more than visible light. They have extended sensitivity in both the UV and IR bands. Because of the IR sensitivity, all modern digital cameras have some sort of IR blocking filter (hot filter) mounted in front of the CCD/CMOS sensor. This will block, to varying degrees depending on how aggressive the camera maker wants to be, some of the IR getting to the sensor. This filter sits in front of the sensor with its integrated Bayer filter of red, green and blue (usually) dyes.
though it must be replaced with some piece of glass of appropriate thickness so that focusing is not affected. that the cameras automatically compensate for any focus shift. The trend has been to more aggressive IR blocking filters over time. for example. possible. just that on cameras with more aggressive hot filters the exposure times can be long. naturally. Other alternatives. This is why some dedicated digital infrared photographers hang onto older cameras or seek them out secondhand. Plus cameras with an optical viewfinder will. You can expect exposure times to lengthen but the IR effect to become more pronounced as you move to the stronger filters. This means it is possible to get a shot. In practice. This filter blocks all the blue and green light but admits some red along with the IR. . An alternative with newer cameras is to have the hot filter removed by a camera technician.In practice. In situations where this is not the case. It is my belief that because the autofocus system uses sensors with effectively the same IR sensitivity as the main imaging sensor. Whether you have a camera with its standard IR blocking filter or a modified camera with clear glass inserted. the hot filter on almost all digital cameras does not completely block IR. allow you to still use that. The advantage of removing the blocking filter are much shorter exposure times that make wedding and portrait photography. This is why you can just see through the filter if you hold it up to a very bright scene. These filters block all or most of the visible light spectrum so that you are illuminating the camera’s sensor with mostly IR light. There are companies that will perform this service for you. A very popular one. Two issues that concern many beginner digital infrared photographers are perceived focus and exposure difficulties. either replacing the blocking filter with clear glass or with a suitable visible light-blocking filter. you will need to mount an IR filter on the lens. This can mean that the ‘rangefinder’ digitals. like the Tiffen #87 and the various Wratten filters cut off all the visible light and varying parts of the near infrared. Whichever filter you use will preclude using the viewfinder for framing on dSLRs. This may not apply for IR macro photography. Compact digitals that have a live preview on the LCD on the back of the camera (and this includes the new Olympus E-330 dSLR) will allow framing using the LCD. but will for a future article. though I have not experimented with this to a significant extent. In all the digital camera cases I have tested. and the one I currently use. it seems that the natural depth of field of the camera at shooting aperture handles any miss focus. like an R72. neither is an issue. is the Hoya R72. as well as handheld landscape work. auto-focus works fine. like the Canon G series or the Olympus C family are easier to use than an SLR in some ways.
Others need some overexposure compensation dialed in.6) and a one second exposure and take a shot. Having set the camera on manual and with the camera tripod mounted. This is also rarely a problem. The approach I take is this. I set a moderate aperture (say f5. On such cameras a couple of stops of over-exposure (as indicated) will usually do the trick.Exposure is also not a great issue in practice and something that can be worked out very quickly with a particular camera through a bit of testing. On some other cameras. Many digital cameras I have tested will get a correct exposure automatically. it is very easy to determine if you have the exposure right. Based on the histogram I adjust the exposure up or down and reshoot until I get a histogram that . This is the case where the same IR blocking filter does not affect both the exposure-metering sensor and the sensor. and thus there is a mismatch. with a histogram superimposed. ideally. there is such a mismatch between the imaging and exposure sensors that you must use manual exposure mode. like my Canon 350D. With the camera set to show the image on the LCD after capture and.
The faint dotted blue line is the natural sensor sensitivity. blue (usually) Bayer filter in place. Thanks to Bob McKeever of Kodak Image Sensor Solutions. you can happily shoot away. if using the R72. I can simply use that each time in similar conditions or I use it as a starting point in varying conditions. But also both the green and blue filters. Having locked in a reasonable starting exposure (you may want to adjust this. The brackets are there because you may well not wish to pin them to the maximum and minimum points for aesthetic and printing reasons. While camera manufacturers seem strangely reticent about the topic. . You can see that as we move above 750 nm the red filter is letting through all the IR. by the fact that it allows through some visible light at the red end of the spectrum. This cannot usually be removed as it is built into most sensors during manufacture. sensor manufacturers have to make public some of the information we need. The red color is also caused. but we will cover that later). you could expect similar curves from other sensors. say. Whilst this is specific to a Kodak sensor. green. The fact that all the color channel filters are effectively transparent to IR above a certain point is the explanation of why many cameras produce a monochrome image when using some of the heavier IR filters.shows no highlight or shadow clipping and basically a bell curve in the middle of the display. Now of course if the camera has an IR blocking filter it will be reducing the IR getting through. we have the graph shown below for one of Kodak’s linear sensors. so the red filter IR sensitivity matches the sensors unfiltered sensitivity. I find that once I have a full sun exposure. for a camera. which were sitting at effectively zero transmission through the later part of the red spectrum start to admit more light as we move into the IR until they meet the red and allow the sensor to be as sensitive as it would be unfiltered. What is going on? The color effect that you see in digital IR shots taken with the Hoya R72 and some other filters is a result of the camera still having the red. but this will affect all color channels equally (effectively). Such an image can be readily improved in Photoshop to make the highlights white(ish) and the shadows black(ish). Once you start getting reasonable images you will probably find that the color is red(ish).
Red .So. The red channel will be capturing the widest part. Whichever of t hese approaches you take. what do you do if you are shooting with an R72 or another filter that creates a color image? Well. as you can see from the graph above. the three color channels are capturing somewhat different parts of the IR spectrum. So the easiest approach is to pick whichever channel gives you the result you want and use that in a convers ion to monochrome. the green less and the blue the least. The options to create a color infrared image are explored in the next article. assuming your camera’s sensor follows the above pattern. you will generally need to use levels or curves to adjust the image. Or you can just do a monochrome conversion from the color image.
you can see that. . when you look at the color histogram at the top. at the bottom is an intensity histogram. back to exposure. you may need to overexposure the image as shown on the camera’s histogram to put the green or blue channel nicely in the middle of the graph. you can see that the red is overexposed whilst the green and blue are in the middle. Depending on your camera you may find that if you intend to use the green or blue channels as the basis for a mono conversion. sitting in the middle of the exposure range. which is what you will see on the back of the camera. It looks pretty reasonable.Lastly. However. In the screengrab from Adobe’s Lightroom below.
This means that some cameras can just be used handheld. exposures will be long. 2007 | Add a Comment 0 in Share Whilst all digital cameras are capable of taking an infrared image if an IR transmitting/visible light blocking filter is used. over the lens and give enough exposure. whether a compact point and shoot. allowing some through (see the various IR tests on the DIMi IR page). like the Hoya R72 or similar. It is almost certain that any digital camera you have. whilst most require a tripod and a full sun exposure of between a second and thirty seconds. The IR blocking filter varies in strength from camera to camera.Digital Infrared With A Converted Camera January 27th. Converting a digital camera for IR work solves this and other issues. All photography in this article is by Wayne J. dSLR or expensive professional model. these filters are not completely IR blocking. All rights reserved. Cosshall. . is capable of taking digital infrared pictures. whilst all modern digitals are fitted with an IR blocking filter. This is because. Thus all we need to do is place a visible light blocking/IR transmission filter.
you are tied to a tripod (sometimes a good thing) and night IR photography becomes a distant wish. However. I love this effect myself. or a clear glass substitute. these provide a huge limitation. water smoothes out and people disappear from city streets. Conversion involves removing the IR blocking filter and replacing it with one of your choice.Unconverted 400D means long exposures and motion blur The long exposures inherent to using a normal digital camera for IR produce a beauty of their own. Trees and grass blur in a breeze or wind. A converted 350D means action photography is possible The solution to all the problems with using an unconverted digital camera for infrared photography is to get it converted. for some types of photography. A careful . You can’t easily shoot people.
. Removing the IR blocking filter exposes the actual sensor and its full range of sensitivity (which extends from the ultra violet to the infrared).choice must be made here depending on the camera you are getting converted.
Many people interested in the conversion for astrophotography and other types of photography take this route. This has the huge advantage of allowing you to see through the viewfinder of a dSLR whilst still shooting only in the infrared. For UV you will need special lenses. To limit the band you place a filter over the lens. visible light photography. or with the live preview coming from the imaging sensor. as normal glass blocks much of the UV. Used with no filter you will get normal color images but may get some weird color effects at times due to the capture of UV and IR bands as well. You can get filters to go on the lens that duplicate the characteristics of the old. The disadvantage is that you can no longer use the camera for normal. For IR your normal lenses will do. on the lens. with compacts you can happily replace the IR blocking filter with clear glass and then use external filters to choose which part of the spectrum to use. With a separate visual viewfinder for framing. Since autofocus is handled in a different way than in dSLRs. The only downside is that for IR-only work you must still use a visible light blocking filter. Be creative For those interested mainly in infrared work. an IR filter (blocking visible light and allowing through infrared). like the R72. With a dSLR you will only get autofocus working correctly over one band. With a dSLR this will mean that you can no longer look through the viewfinder. such as a ZLR (electronic viewfinder camera or a compact) the choice is easier. usually visible. With a non-SLR digital camera. in which a clear piece of glass is inserted in place of the removed filter. you are free to frame your shots even with a visible light-blocking filter in place. . can be inserted. For compact cameras and the electronic viewfinder digital camera you get full autofocus functionality. built-in IR blocking filter or use visible light blocking filters that allow only the UV or IR parts of the spectrum to be imaged. in a conversion MaxMax calls an IR+Visible conversion. like the Hoya R72. There is no need to stick to conventional IR subjects.The sensor can be left free to cover its whole range.
like my daughter shown here. is very disconcerting in IR.Shooting people you know well. as their looks will change .
of 30 seconds at f2. So you need to decide what shooting is most important to you and thus the type of conversion that is required. With some digital SLRs having full sun exposure times. .The results of the conversion are certainly worth it. Now I have the choice of handholding or not. you can see the potential for improvement.8 and 100ISO. After conversion exposure times in similar lighting became 1/500 second at f8 and 100ISO. unconverted. My 350D before conversion had exposure times in full sun of 1 second and f8 at 100ISO with a Hoya R72 filter. Reduced exposure times mean reduced noise in the images too.
filter. some of it getting through the filter (since none of the filters are completely IR blocking because we can do IR photography). Before the conversion. from where internal reflections can cause it to bounce back to the sensor. There ras the is IR yet blocking another filter is side effect with of the the conversion. which means it reflects away the unwanted frequencies rather than absorbing them. In this case the reflection is straight into the back element of the lens. This produces images that are sharper unprocessed than before. This makes sense. Removing the IR blocking filter removes the anti-moire filter as well. is removed. The negative is that the camera can be more prone to moiré effects when shooting fabrics. . or infrared blocking filter. the so called hot filter. etc. I found some lenses created a hotspot when shooting with a Hoya R72 filter fitted for infrared photography. Since the conversion.Another side effect of the conversion is to do with lenses. This filter is usually a dichloric filter. The images seem to have a bit more snap and contrast to them. In the conversion. as well. Removing the blocking filter removes this strong source of IR reflection into the back of the lens. I have found that these lenses do not create a hotspot. a On filter most that digital applies a came slight combined anti-moire (or not so slight) blur to the light before it reaches the sensor to minimize aliasing effects. wire mesh.
after you have decided whether you want to modify a camera for much better infrared photography. Given the quality of the work. choice of filters to have emplaced and warrantee on their work. My 350D was converted byMaxMax. . the conversion cost is not at all unreasonable. The turn around was two days from receipt of the camera to it shipping out. and only you can answer that one. the next question is whether to make the conversion yourself or have someone else do it for you? There are web sites that offer you full instructions on how to do it yourself (links are on the infrared photography special page).com and I am very happy with the result.So. and I would not hesitate to use them for a future camera conversion. There are also individuals and businesses that will do it for you (located with the other links).
My advice is to try infrared photography with an unconverted digital camera and something like a Hoya R72 filter. Then you will know whether you are really keen enough about IR to want a converted camera. if you haven’t already done so. Push IR photography as far as you can with the gear you have. .
. You may too. a converted camera has been a huge joy.For me. I am in love with infrared photography and adore the freedom that a converted dSLR gives me.
camera manufacturers place an IR blocking filter in front of the sensor to improve color rendition by blocking infrared light. see our article “Choosing a Filter for Infrared Photography”). Infrared photography is. We cover film infrared photography elsewhere. Unfortunately the strength of the filters has been growing over time and so more recent digital cameras have blocking filters that will cause your exposures to be quite long and certainly requiring a tripod. 2008 | 3 Comments 3 in Share In this tutorial we go step by step through shooting infrared with your normal. The common one and. unmodified digital camera. the best one to start with. so here we will concentrate on digital infrared here. Because of this. stunning. in my view. You will need a filter to block the visible light through the lens and only allow the infrared through. quite simply. but in practice it does not. and so we can still shoot IR. In many compact cameras the Live View on the LCD with still work and display the scene. is the Hoya R-72 filter (for a more extensive discussion. These blocking filters are not 100% effective. The only company’s camera that has Live View that works with an IR filter attached is Olympus. With their cameras . So it is natural for a photographer to want to give this a go.Shooting Infrared Photography Step By Step November 4th. Digital camera sensors are sensitive to infrared light. in the case of an SLR. Your R-72 filter goes on the lens and thus stops you from seeing through the camera. This filter lets through a tiny amount of red light but the full range of infrared. With dSLRs with Live View you would expect this to work.
If you examine the graph above which shows the sensitivity through the Bayer RGB filter that is part of every camera’s sensor you will understand why a camera responds the way it does in the . but you must turn on Live View Boost from the menus.you will get a darkish but quite workable monochrome view.
this is not true of the other filters. The green and blue filters drop to opaque beyond their range. which the green and blue will be less so. green from 780nm and blue from 800nm on. This obviously varies from sensor to sensor because of the different dyes used in manufacturing the Bayer filter. What this means in practice is that your camera will produce a more extreme infrared effect (darker skies. more contrast) in the green and blue channels than in the red. Since filters are defined by the point at which their transparency to IR rises to 50%. . This explains why the resulting images from your camera will usually be very red: the camera is capturing more light in the red channel because it can make use of a wider range of IR light and covers an area where the sensor is more sensitive to IR. we can see that while the red filter remains transparent to light from the red (as you would expect) right through to the IR.IR. with this particular filter the green channel acts as if it had a 780nm cutoff filter and the blue as if it had an 800nm filter. approximately. again as you would expect. With this Kodak sensor (reproduced with permission from Kodak). but become transparent to infrared above a certain wavelength. So in a camera with this sensor the red channel will see IR from 720nm on.
.The fact that the three color channels will see different parts of the infrared spectrum (depending on the filter you put on the lens) means that there is some residual information you can exploit for false color infrared. We will look at this in the companion article “Processing Infrared Photography Step By Step”. if you wish to.
This lack of use of the full range means that you will normally. So to create a good image for later work you will wish to expose your image to the maximum possible level without white clipping occurring. in processing later. That means you need to choose which channel is most important to you. with a more moderate IR effect but the highest exposure. with a stronger IR effect but requiring a longer exposure. and thus more noise. Because most infrared scenes will. In many cameras I have tested there is approximately a 2. .5 stop difference in exposure between the red and the green channel. If you are primarily stretching the image data up to create a white you will also be magnifying the image noise. with an unconverted camera.The above difference between the three-color channels in how much of the infrared spectrum they see means that there is a significant difference in exposure between the three when you take a photograph. the red. need to do a Levels adjustment and stretch the tones out. or the green. not use the full tonal range the camera can capture. you will end up with a lump on each channel that does not cover the whole range (see the histogram below).
Once you have determined the above you can start shooting. Framing is an issue with dSLRs (as well as film SLRs for IR work). With the filter on you cannot see. There are three possible solutions to this issue: Use an external viewfinder mounted on the hotshoe for framing; Frame by guess and then refine once you have taken a shot; Frame the camera and then screw on the filter. Personally I do not like the last one because there is too much handling of the filter and thus more risk on dropping it or marking it. I prefer the guess approach, so let me illustrate that below.
Setup the camera on your favorite tripod, with a cable release (you can use the self timer if you do not have one) and the R-72 or similar filter on the lens. Point the camera by eye and set a starting field of view if using a zoom lens. Take a shot. Look at the result and change the setup if the framing does not please. Remember to use the eyepiece blind or little plastic thing on the camera strap to cover the eyepiece. There is the risk of light leaking in and fogging part of the image. Determining your exposure is an easy process. Depending on how recent your camera is, set a starting exposure of somewhere between ½ a second (older camera) to 15 seconds (newer camera), f4 and 100 or 200ISO. Take a shot. Adjust the display on the LCD screen so that a histogram is also displayed if your camera is capable of doing so (normally done by cycling through the modes with the display button, but check the manual). If you can display individual channel histograms adjust your exposure up or down to put the desired channel as close to the right of the histogram as you can without clipping. If your camera only displays one, combined, histogram if you place the right of the histogram up near the right of the graph you will be properly exposing the red channel. Find by experiment how many stops from this you need to shift to correctly place the green channel. If no histogram can be displayed you must do it from the image. If the result is very bright red but with no obvious clipping then you are exposing the red channel properly. Again, experimentation will show you how much you must shift from this to get the green right. This will result in an over exposed red image showing lots of white, on the LCD.
With most dSLRs I have tested you will get a decent result with autofocus. This is because, with the R-72 filter on the lens, only IR light is going into the camera and so the sensor must focus using this light. I would advise using a moderately stopped down aperture if the exposure sensitivity permits. What I mean here is that many cameras only allow you to set a shutter speed up to 30 seconds. If your camera requires a full sun exposure of 30 second, f2.8 and 100ISO, then you want to stop down further you will need to either use bulb and using a watch or stopwatch time the exposure or increase the ISO, which may not be desirable to you because of a rise in noise. Remember that (see the separate article on Diffraction Effects) blurring occurs faster as you stop down to really small apertures in infrared than it does in the visible. So I rarely go below f11. Again you need to take some shots and then look at them at 100% in Photoshop to see how well the focus works. Manual focusing can be hard with dSLRs because many of the lenses no longer show and IR red focus line. If you have a lens with this mark you can, of course, focus without the filter, then attach it and adjust focus.
Don’t be surprised if, when you examine your images either on the LCD or back home on the computer, that they feature a central glow or low contrast, fogged looking area. Many lenses do not perform well in IR, at least on unconverted cameras. Since the IR blocking filter in the camera is one that reflects away the IR light rather than absorbing it, the majority of the IR getting through your R-72 filter will be reflected back at the lens. This IR will reflect around and, because the multi-coatings may not be designed to handle IR, eventually find their way back to the sensor, causing a central spot. Some lenses will only do this at certain zoom settings or certain apertures. If you have a lens which does this badly the only real solution is to buy a different lens. See the reference lists elsewhere on this site for our listings and those on other sites. You will also find that your camera is more sensitive to lens flare in IR than in visible light. So you need to be more careful about effective lens shades and how you point the camera, unless you like this effect. That’s about it for the shooting. See the companion article on Processing Infrared Photography Step By Step.
showing the options you have as you go.Processing Infrared Photography Step By Step November 4th. Shooting Infrared Photography Step By Step. We will examine these separately. Once you have shot infrared images with your digital camera you will need to do some processing to make them useable. Monochrome image Approach 1 If you have chosen a single channel to expose for when you were shooting. You have two different directions you can take: produce a monochrome image or go for a false color image. just the details of the exact commands will vary. the first approach option is to do a monochrome conversion from just your chosen channel. In this article we will go step by step through the process. 2008 | 5 Comments 0 in Share In this tutorial we go step by step through the processing of infrared images from an unconverted digital camera. like Paint Shop Pro. your images will look very strange straight from the camera. As we saw in the previous article. The processing of digital infrared images is one that offers huge and almost infinite creative options. So if you use one of these you will be able to do these processes. . While this tutorial is illustrated by screenshots from Adobe Photoshop CS4. all these techniques can be done in CS3 and most can be done in earlier versions of Photoshop and in other programs.
recovery and blacks sliders. .Open your image in Photoshop. It is better to setup ACR to pass a 16-bit image to Photoshop as this will give you more headroom to make adjustments without adversely affecting tonal graduation. if necessary doing any adjustments you want in Adobe Camera RAW. Remember that you may be able to claw back any burned out highlights or blocked up shadows with the exposure.
Now open up the channel palette and select just the channel you wish to use. .
.If you use Image -> Mode-> Monochrome Photoshop will convert your image to monochrome using just the one channel.
Use Levels to do this. Note that I position the dialog so I can still see the histogram panel while I make the adjustments to ensure I am not going to introduce clipping. You can set the black and white points to whatever you want.You will probably find your image is a bit flat. So the first step is to adjust the black and white points. . So you can maintain full control over the highlights and shadows and just how they look.
.At this point you can take the image anyway you like. such as by applying curves to increase contrast where you want it or doing local adjustment using dodge and burn or other approaches.
Duplicate the image layer by dragging it to the New Layer icon. .Approach 1a – Simulate Halation Many people like the glowing highlights look that came about with Kodak Highspeed Infrared Emulsion because of its lack on an anti-halation coating. You can simulate this with the following approach.
.Apply a pretty heavy Gaussian Blur filter to this duplicate layer.
layer to Lighten or to another mode that works for you. Lighten will simply apply the glow to the highlights without blurring the shadows.Now change the blending mode of the top. blurred. .
You can then use opacity to control the degree of the effect. .
Another alternative is to add a Layer Mask to this blur layer. .
. Open your image up in Photoshop and do an individual channels level adjustment by either selecting one channel at a time in the Channels palette and then Levels.Then paint into the layer mask where you want to hide or reduce the effect. Approach 2 You can choose to combine the channels rather than select just one to do the BW conversion.
Do Image -> Adjustments -> Black & White .
Now you can mix the channels together and see the result in the main image window. .
.Color Image Approach 1 Using a single image we can create false color. Open the image up in Photoshop.
Do an individual Levels on each channel. You can do this by selecting each channel one at a time in the Channels palette or by using the facility of the Le vels dialog to work on individual color channels. .
This gives you an image with subtle color .
One way to develop further is to increase the color saturation or vibrancy to make the subtle color more obvious.At this point you can leave it like this or further develop the image. .
.You can perform channel swaps to shift the color. Do a Select All and then copy to the clipboard. You can click on the red channel. Say you want to swap red and blue channels.
.Click on the New Channel icon in the Channels palette and paste the red channel in there.
Then copy the Blue channel and paste it in the Red. .
Then copy the temporary channel (what was the Red) into the Blue and delete the Alpha 1 temporary channel. .
. such as here where by lightening the red channel I add more obvious red to the image.Further adjustments can be made to individual channels.
of course. .There are. many other ways to add false color in Photoshop. such as by using the channel mixer.
. as can other causes of movement. The specific sequence of steps is shown below: Select the images you will use in Bridge.Approach 2 An innovative solution to creating false color images. days of high wind can be a problem. so care should be taken when you attach the IR filter. visible light image without your infrared filter and the second is an infrared image. to turn the foliage red. To create the classic Ektachrome effect it is generally the red or green IR channel that you move into the red channel of the color image. With landscapes. Life is much easier if these are both shot on tripod and in alignment. requires that you take two images. such as cars. people. that look somewhat like the old Infrared Ektachrome false color film IR images did. Photoshop or some other program. The approach is to open both images in Photoshop and swap channels from the infrared image into the color one. One image should be a normal. But other possibilities also exist for other effects. Now because of the channel swapping between the two images you need to be careful of either camera or subject movement between the two shots. etc. so you would wish to do this as quickly as possible.
Now you will have your two images open in Photoshop. .
.Select the individual channel in the IR image that you want to use. In this case I am using the green channel. Do a Select All and then copy it to the clipboard.
and do a Paste. usually red. .Select the channel you want this put into.
Now examine just the colored image to see if there is any misalignment. .
This is often more easily done at 100% and focusing on a distant part of the scene that does not move.If there is a misalignment select just the red channel (but make sure the other channels are visible by clicking on the eye next to each channel) and use the move tool to move the red layer into alignment. .
And this is the result. .
Here I have used a red channel. You can see the interesting color effects you get when things like leaves move. .Other results are possible depending on the actual IR channel you choose.
Here are a couple of other examples .
Here we have the color image in LAB mode and I paste the IR image into the L channel. .Remember you are not limited to RGB.
.And here into the a channel.
.I hope you have found this article useful and will get you going on working with a subject that is my passion. digital infrared photography.
So. here is my method to editing those starkly ‘red/magenta’ photographs! This is the before/after shot: Infrared Post-Processing Infrared photography is a special technique in which you use an Infrared Filter.Post-Processing Infrared Photographs in Photoshop I have recently become interested in Infrared Photography and I had a bit of trouble finding good ways to post-process my IR photos. which you attach over your lens like any other lens filter – then take an exposure using a fairly long shutter speed (dependent on light source). .
mainly due to the strong IR filters already within the camera designed to protect the cameras sensor. and switch to your live view mode.0: • • • • • • • Choose custom White Balance. The photograph you end up with has a very red/magenta Hue. To test whether your camera is ideal or not. and set the Temperature to 2000 Adjust the Tint to full green -150.The IR-Filter blocks all other light and allows only Infrared light to pass through onto your sensor/film. Please be aware that not all cameras are ideal for infrared photography. you should notice the “purple” colour of the remote transmitter light. if needed: Adjust the Saturation (Bottom) – I have reduced mine by -56 You can do minor adjustments in Camera Raw. simply grab a remote control with an IR transmitter (most TV remotes). which now presents us with the task of post-processing the photograph to create an interesting representation of our world in Infrared light.0/6. Starting Firstly open your raw IR photograph in Photoshop • If you use the raw editing interface it is very easy to reduce the red – this should open automatically when opening your raw file through Photoshop In Camera Raw 5. or just leave and open up the image I also recommend looking at the HSL/Grayscale (fourth tab) options for further refinement. however put simply the greater amount of light that you see the better your camera is for Infrared photography. adjusting the Hue especially! At this point I had done most of my editing and was reasonably happy with the result! You might as well! . Aiming the remote at your camera while pressing the buttons. I’ve done this Photoshop : 1. The intensity will vary for every camera.
Image –> Adjustments –> Channel Mixer . Channel Mixer (recommended) • • Now. we need to change the colours Red and Blue by colour swapping: Go.Camera Raw Adjustments (Click to view larger) 2.
0% .• Swap Red to Blue: 0%. 0%. 0%. 100% Channel Mixer – Red (Click to view larger) • Swap Blue to Red: 100%.
b.Channel Mixer – Blue (Click to view larger) 2. Inversion Layer A simpler method is to duplicate the original. and set to color blend: • • • Duplicate Layer. then invert the duplicate. go Image –> Adjustments –> Invert (Cmd/Ctrl + I) And set to Color blend mode: . Invert layer.
Hue Shift • • • Now colouring your photograph with a simply Hue Shift: Go. Image –> Adjustments –> Hue (Cmd/Ctrl + U) And slide to your desired colour: .Invert Layer – Colour Blend (Click to view larger) 3.
Hue Shift (Click to view larger) 4. go Image –> Adjustments –> Levels (Cmd/Ctrl + L) Either clicking Auto Levels will work or using the white point sampler on grass. Levels • • Now. leaves will do the job: . use levels to correct the whites.
Levels adjusting Whites Result: .
Related Posts .That’s it :)! If you get stuck anywhere just comment below! If you’d like to use these photographs please Contact Me! Please comment below if you have any questions and I’ll answer them ASAP! All images on this site are copyrighted© – All Rights Reserved.
after the Image is taken with the camera. so use your favorite editor and editor methods. One of the primary purposes for the existence of this site is to cut thru the mass of information available.Post Processing your IR Image . It offers a great degree of control. . There are so many individual ways to do this that I must emphasize that there are alternatives to every step that I present. that makes quick work of the conversion to Black and White.Related to IR Photography . as well as quite a number of toning options in addition to monochrome. it turns out. and finally.Simplified! I get a lot of requests and questions on the subject of Post Processing the IR Image once it's been captured by the Digital Camera. so I have decided to put together a simplified work-flow that I often use to produce Black and White IR Pictures. In my own experience. There are as many workflows and creative styles for IR Post Processing as there are IR Photographers. I've found a free plugin that works with most of the major editors. Useful Links One thing's for certain. Just take a look at the Featured Photographer Section to get an idea of what is possible and just how diverse the results can be. If you notice any link that does not work. the other half of IR Photography. It's a subject that can be very difficult to provide an answer to without going into a long drawn out detailed explaination. End of Comment. They all do quite a bit of post processing to get the stunning results that you see.Visit Often! Refer links that you find useful and that you would like to see added to this list. I do have a couple of links in my Useful Links Section. One has steps for a monochrome conversion. the creative process really just begins. some of it is not necessarily wrong. People really develop their distinctive and artistic styles in the image editors. Up to this point. and a lot of it is found in the following URLs. make sure that you do your own comprehensive review of the information available to you. Send the the URL via comments to this post. So what else is new? Not much. please notify me for removal or correction. I have generally avoided the subject. No one I know ever leaves their images unchanged straight out of the camera. Links . and sometimes moves. or to my email address. some of it is downright inaccurate. listed below. much of the information out there on the world wide web is useful and accurate. There is no way I can cover all the possible ways to Post Process your IR image in one post article. Content on the web comes and goes. My Personal Editorial Comment: Although a lot of good information about shooting Infrared Photography has been published on the Internet. some of it is only the opinion of the presenter. and one with Red/Blue Channel swap steps to get False Color IR images. and only serves to muddy the waters. it is time to address this. but it's obvious that with the "Beginners Section" almost fleshed out. but it is of little practical use. and present relevant information in a simple and understandable manner.
Companies who will Mod your Camera for Infrared • • • • Maxmax Lifepixel Khromagery IRDigital Various Links with Information about Infrared • • • • • • • • • • • • Infrared Basics Bythom Infrared Black and White Film Digital Infrared Resource Page dpFwiW Photo tidbits infra-red photography Tamron Jim Doty Canon 10D and 20D Surreal Color Photography Sony DSC-F707 Infrared oVan's View • Jim-Kramer.0 .com • Cavalier Photographic Links with ideas about Post Processing • • Joseph Levy's Post Process Lone Star Digital Infrared Group Forums • • Jules Alexander's Yahoo IR Group The Infrared Photography Community 2.
Up Front Disclaimer: I do not have any connection to any person or business listed in any of the Links in this list. I purchase photography equipment and services just as you do. In order for me to keep valid email messages and dispense with spam you MUSTinclude this "secret handshake" in the subject line. and you alone are completely responsible for making your own decisions in the use of information provided in these Links. If I don't see that wordsomewhere in the subject line.Jerry -=- Virtual Photographer can be found and downloaded at: Virtual Photographer . -=. However. I expect a lot of unfamiliar email traffic. "scooter" (my cat's name). into the cosmic bit bucket goes the email. So for example: your subject line would look something like this "scooter hey Jerry I have IR info for you". I do not receive anything of any monetary value or otherwise from the owners of any of the Links.My email policy: Email me at infraredbuzz at gmail dot com. You. or I may have done personal business with them in the past. It is quite possible that I may personally know persons involved with the Links. Thanks for your understanding. no exceptions (unless I happen to recognize your email addy). I will not recommend or in any way qualify the information or business practices of the owners of the Links.
Be sure to read the instructions for installing the Plugin to your editor while you are at the site. . I have found that it works with Photoshop CS2 and various versions of Photoshop Elements.
I have provided a link with detailed steps. If however you do not know how. these steps are pretty generic and will work in most all editors. a bit of searching the internet will turn up numerous ways to convert your image file to Black and White. you RAW shooters may just want to review the steps. If you happen to prefer an editor that Virtual Photographer does not work with. My image was not very level. here's one way to level it back up. as required. you do not have to click the link. so if you already know how to do a step. So click or skip. Level the Image .When you have the plugin downloaded and installed. So. I'm sure that this only happens to me. it is the most generic output image and not all cameras are capable of producing a RAW file. I will be using Photoshop CS2 here but. Nothing presented here is Rocket Science. as you will be able to make some of these adjustments in your RAW editor. which you can substitute. you are ready to open your image in your editor of choice. I have chosen a JPG image to work on. Here are the Workflow steps. but just in case you like that one image that you happened to tilt the camera on.
actually barely perceptable. my image is certainly tilted to the left or counter clockwise. but I like it enough the salvage it. Straighten the Image Yep. but I like what it does. The change is not dramatic. Select Image. Here is the explaination about what is going on from Luminance Landscape. so I include it. Rotate Canvas . No problem.I like to do a quick Contrast Enhancement step on just about all of the images that I post process.
Select Arbitrary .
it should LOOK straight. The angle of 3.5 was a guess. be straight. technically. Remember. try the number that you think is needed and use the Edit. Undo until you get it looking straight. . the image does not have to actually.This one needs to be rotated Clockwise (to the right).
. now it looks straight.So. We need to crop the image to remove the rotated corners.
Select the Crop Tool from the Tool Bar. . on the left. Look closely for the mouse pointer arrow.
Select as much of the image as you can. if you want to. . You can also crop into the image now. removing the rotated corners. You end up with a selected area surrounded by marching ants.
and Photoshop opens this dialog box. Select Crop. .Click on the Crop Tool in the Tool bar on the left once more.
all straight and pretty.There you are. .
I'm attempting to illustrate the basic steps to straighten and crop. which I call Local Contrast Enhancement — is one of the best that I've seen in a while. just use it. Luminous Landscape Understanding Local Contrast Enhancement A Photoshop Technique Digital image processing is still new enough for most people that no matter how much we read. . that invaluable tool yet also bottomless pit of a time sink. If you have an easier way the do the same thing.There are a number of alternate ways in Photoshop to straighten and crop an image. there seems to be an endless amount to learn. This is particularly true as regards Photoshop. experiment and work at it. But every now and then a little tidbit comes along that makes ones work either easier or better. and this one.
but I haven't yet seen or read about it anywhere else. Trying to stuff 8 stops into 5. One solution is to apply an S-Curve to the image. and invariably it's the shadow areas. But if you do this.I learned of it from Thomas Knoll.5 stops means that something has to give. (Below are links to sites contain this and similar techniques that have been brought to my attention since first publication). Whitney — May. and not-incidently. while you end up with images containing enough mid-tone contrast. 2003 Canon 1Ds with 28-70mm f/2. They'll likely be completely lost in a sea of black. say. By this I'm referring to the range of brightness encountered — from the brightest non-specular highlights in a scene to the deepest shadows. . But if you try and match the scene's black level to that of the print you'll end up reducing the contrast of the image across the entire dynamic range. a member of a couple of my workshops during 2003. matte paper may only be able to display a 5. Grasses. Mt. they may lack tonal detail in the shadows and highlights.5 stops range. where you compress the dynamic range both in the highlights and in the shadows so as to provide a greater percentage of the available dynamic range to the mid-tones to which the human eye is more sensitive. while a typical print on. This can be as much as 8 stops. Thomas says that he certainly didn't develop the technique.8L @ ISO 400 The Problem The real world has a much greater dynamic range than does a photographic print. though it appears to have been around for a while. the original author of Adobe Photoshop and Camera RAW.
The Solution — Yes.8L IS lens @ ISO 200 . Crofts and Waterfall. Iceland — July. 2003 Canon 1Ds with 70-200mm f/2. sometimes there is a free lunch.
(This is done as a seperate step from whetever settings you may use within Unsharp Mask for your normal image sharpening). Without going into the physiology of it. with and without.Detail — prior to Local Contrast Enhancement Detail — after Local Contrast Enhancement There is a simple yet elegant fix for this. this is indeed happening at a more fundamental level than simply the eye’s iris opening and closing. Try changing Radius and Amount to see what differences this makes. . Here’s how to do it. Thanks Thomas! Contrast Enhancement This image. I think you'll be amazed as well as pleased with the results. click on the link. Amount is the amount by which you are increasing the small scale differences. and most all of them out-of-camera really could stand a Levels Adjustment. Note that this is a subtle effect. Use Undo or the History Palette to jump backwards and forwards to see what the effect does. Look at images on-screen at 100% as well as filling the screen. You wouldn't want this in any event. and why it works… Think about the way that the eye takes in a wide dynamic range scene. Improve this and you've made the shadow and highlight areas (where contrast is most compressed) appear broader. and surprisingly it is done by using the Unsharp Mask filter. Make prints with and without. and as we do so our eyes are adapting to the brightness requirements of the subject. If you need to know how. That's it. But when you look at prints side by side. Try the following setting using the Unsharp Mask filter in Photoshop: Amount — 20% Radius — 50 Threshold — 0 The Radius setting is the dividing line between the small scale and large scale contrast differences. Don't expect it jump out and bite you. As we look at it we are constantly jumping from area to area. and the Threshold is set at zero to minimize artifacts. Large scale contrast is that between significant light and dark areas in the image. It turns out though that the eye and brain care more about small scale contrast than large scale contrast. Try it. Small scale or "local contrast" is that between much smaller adjacent areas in the image.
Contrast Enhancement Select Filter and unSharp Mask Enter the Values 20. 0 . 50.
Adjust Levels Select Image. Adjustments. Levels .Adjust Levels Apply the Virtual Photographer filter to make the Black and White Conversion.
.Photoshop opens a Histogram.
.Select and drag the left arrow to approximately where the histogram curve starts upwards.
It there is no data like there was on the left side.The arrow on the right side of the histogram was OK for image. Watch the preview. If your image has the tallest peak right in the center of the Histogram. then drag the arrow to where it starts upwards. I grabbed the center Gamma Arrow and pulled it to the right. the gamma arrow placed directly under the peak usually looks very good. I went ahead with the next step. and move the Gamma Arrow to where you like the look of the image. Since I did not have to move the right arrow. You may not want to move this arrow at all. .
You can give them a try and use Undo to remove the change if it does not work well. . and all of the others will be adjusted accordingly. Select an area that you know you want to be Black. This eyedropper allows you to set a White Point for the image. Notice that the Mouse Pointer is selecting the eyedropper on the right. Same goes for setting the Black Point. So you want to select an area that you want to be white. Whatever pixel you select in the image will be set to white.You may or may not want to set White and Black points.
Having selected the White Point eyedropper, I pointed it to the whitest part of the clouds that I could find. My goal was to make the leaves in the trees whiter.
As you can see, selecting the area of the clouds did not affect the image as I wanted, so I again used the tool, this time selecting the lightest point in the tree leaves that I could find. This made the leaves somewhat lighter. Remember the rest of the image is adjusted accordingly. So use this spareingly, and use the Undo if necessary.
I then selected the Black Point eyedropper.
I selected a very dark area above the window for my black point.
Click on OK to accept the changes.
Black & White Conversion I like to make a final Brightness and Contrast Adjustment at this point. Don't use my settings, but experiment with your images. These numbers worked well for this particular image file. Black and White Conversion using Virtual Photographer Select Filter, OptikVerve Labs, Virtual Photographer
The plugin opens.
.Cleck the On/Off Box and leave the Original Radio Button selected.
.Check the B/W Box. Leave Normal selected.
You can play with the Slider under the Normal Box. I did not make any change this time. .
Virtual photographer will convert the image based on your selections. There are a great number of other highly adjustable tones and changes available at the click of a mouse in this plugin. .Click on the Process Button. I advise you to take some time to explore this plugin.
but one I like to apply. Don't go overboard with the sharpening. Optional Brightness and Contrast Adjustment This step is completely Optional. Preview and Undo until you are happy with the way your own picture looks. Select Image. The change is subtle. you may want to apply a small amount of unSharp Mask to sharpen up the image. Adjustments. Brightness/Contrast .Brightness and Contrast Adjustment Finally.
Set the Contrast to a small positive number (5-10).Set the Brightness to a small negative number (5-10). Preview the image before you accept the change. .
Sharpen. but you may choose to skip some of them based on how your image looks to start with.Final Sharpen So there you have it. and just what result you are trying to achieve. It may seem like a lot of steps. Be sure that you don't over-do the sharpening and cause jpg artifacts. Apply a final Sharpen Most images can benefit from a small amount of Sharpening to give them that final Pop. You should consider this only the very beginning of your own personal artistic style. Select Filter. etc. unSharp Mask .
unSharp Mask settings that I like to apply to the images from my camera are usually around 50 .4 0. You settings can and will vary depending on your camera and each individual image.
The Finished Product.
Check out My IR Gallery previous | next
06-JUN-2004 DSC05989 480x640.jpg Ft Worth, Tx. Downtown Church
Sony DSC-F717 1/60s f/2.2 at 16.8mm iso100 nightshot Hoya R72 ND8 full exif Full EXIF Info
Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance
06-Jun2004 14:58:28 Sony Cybershot No 16.8 mm 1/60 sec f/2.2 100
center weighted (2) (6)
20-JUN-2006 IMG_7853 720x480.jpg
Around Southlake, Tx. Canon EOS 350D 1/100s f/8.0 at 32.0mm iso100 hide exif Full EXIF Info Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance previous | next 20-Jun-2006 05:28:21 Canon Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL XT No 32 mm 1/100 sec f/8 100 +1 (-1) matrix (5) (6) aperture priority (3)
13-JUN-2004 DSC06208 480x640.jpg Riverside Cemetery, Iredell, Tx Grave Markers
Sony DSC-F717 1/60s f/2.2 at 17.2mm iso100 nightshot R72 ND8 hide exif Full EXIF Info
2 mm 1/60 sec f/2.Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance 13-Jun-2004 15:46:30 Sony Cybershot No 17.2 100 center weighted (2) (6) previous | next .
Dallas.10-JUN-2004 DSC06040 640x480.jpg Trinity River .4 100 Jerry Kneupper .4 at 32. Dallas Sunset Stacked IR and color images Sony DSC-F717 1/60s f/2.3mm iso100 hide exif Full EXIF Info Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance (-1) center weighted (2) (6) 10-Jun-2004 19:22:11 Sony Cybershot No 32.3 mm 1/60 sec f/2. Tx.
television pioneer. I spent my formative years using black & white film and darkroom-based techniques whilst also enjoying parallel activities with colour transparencies and audio-visual work.based work caused me to experiment with infrared film. There was all the business of loading the camera in the dark (using a 'changing bag' on location). subject to the usual oddities encountered with IR. then. fitting the opaque filter to the lens and guessing the exposure. I certainly enjoyed the very special qualities of IR and when making the change to a digital camera system I realised that this was one aspect of film-based photography that I would indeed miss. the scientific community have long known of its properties as a recording medium for 'thermal imaging' and the like and 'serious photographers' have enjoyed its eerie and lyrical attributes for landscape work in particular. focussing. notably Kodak High-Speed IR. constantly 'exciting' and hugely unpredictable. . John Logie Baird carried out experiments with an IR video system. I found the medium to be risky. wayward. a number of useable negatives resulted.Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow Clive R. My darkroom . re-focussing to the 'red spot' on the lens. The movie industry used IR to shoot 'day for night' to simulate moonlit scenes in black and white films. All this gave a certain mystique to the adventure of capturing images in IR. Haynes FRPS In The 'Old Days' In common with many photographers in this 'digital age'. Then back in the darkroom the film was processed using one's preferred developer and.indeed. IR therefore has a long pedigree. infrared film has been around since about the 1930's .
there was a recognition by lens makers that an indicator of the focus point for IR would be useful and the 'red dot' appeared upon lenses. in the good old days. Look for it on modern lenses and you'll be disappointed. Naturally camera and lens manufacturers produce products to record 'visible light'.and as the words suggest. foliage and grasses become radiant and effervescent in appearance. plenty of information is published and easily available via the Internet. The wavelengths are measured in nanometres and for IR photography we're looking at something in the region of 700 nm and longer.' being at a longer wavelength. Red is at the low-frequency end with corresponding longer wavelengths of light and blue is at the highfrequency end with shorter wavelengths. from red. however but for those wishing more detail. infrared falls in the low-frequency section just beyond visible red. The 'red dot' was necessary as IR 'light. it's the part that human vision is able to detect. indigo and violet. 'Visible light' is then further broken down into the spectrum of colours that we can readily identify. through orange and yellow. however. . When we record the world using IR we 'reveal' how reflectivity from a variety of surfaces and objects differs from what we normally expect. focussed beyond the focal-plane of the camera and the lens required a 'tweak' to bring the scene back into sharpness. to green and so through blue. The diagram of the Electromagnetic Spectrum below gives an indication of how small an area 'visible light' represents and the position of infrared.A short technical excursion The technicalities need to be brief.What is Infrared? . whilst blue skies become near black and these special qualities lend themselves to pictorial expression. 'Visible light' is the small part of the very wide electro-magnetic spectrum . For example.
I preferred to buy a DI SLR camera and have it converted to dedicated IR use. near-IR frequencies contribute to the attractive properties of 'Channel Swapping' and associated manipulations. Choice of IR Filter Depth When deciding to have a camera converted for IR take a moment to consider the depth of the filter you need. as an alternative. However. A really useful service provided by a specialist is for camera to be carefully adjusted in such a way so that whilst IR is focussed upon the array. . How you record and adjust the tones and manage so-called 'false colours' is entirely your own affair and the product of your artistic judgement and aesthetic sensibility. then a 720nm filter will serve you better. One of the fascinations of recording a scene in IR is that the world is revealed with a different tonal response to that with which we're familiar. Kits are available for DIY conversion but I preferred to send the body to a specialist. I chose the Nikon D70 as both affordable and readily convertible. So if you wish to utilise the pictorial effects and alternative colour tonalities of 'Channel Swapping' or 'Lab Color Mode'. Until fairly recently the most common IR filters were for wavelengths of around 720nm. One of the great things using a 'converted camera' is the ability to see the IR result immediately after shooting. which offer 'direct-viewing IR'. revealing little or no 'false-colour' characteristics. plus there are risks of 'fogging' and flare spots. at 720nm. however. It's possible to shoot IR on many cameras with such a filter by using a method similar to film. it comes at a price. In this respect no one can tell you that it's incorrect. check the histogram and feel confident. If you prefer a deeper filter to 'see' further into the infrared. To avoid corrupting the image an IR blocking filter is built in to the camera body. The price is one of recording an image that will be pretty well monochromatic.it's simply different. you can rely upon what you see and use auto-focus with no problem. the viewfinder remains sharp. The strength of the filter varies from make to make and model to model. Which one to choose? Deeper is not necessarily better . a deeper IR filter at around 830nm. Many specialists can now offer. Camera Conversion I could have sought one of the few IR cameras available (at a price). (See note at base of page). Monochrome is what one expects from IR.Digital Cameras Digital cameras using CCD and CMOS chips are sensitive to the 'near infrared'. No refocusing is necessary. Indeed I have done this but it lacks the speed and spontaneity of 'straight-shooting'. It's achived by fitting an opaque filter and using a long exposure.
DI . Set the camera to measure the White Balance in sunlight Point the camera to a patch of grass so that it completely fills the viewfinder Defocus the image Measure / set the white balance (tip: You may need to under or over-expose for this test to gain a setting) Save as a 'Custom Setting' Make the 'Custom Setting' your normal 'White Balance' Setting a custom white balance helps in presenting more meaningful information for the camera-based histogram. However. if your camera permits simultaneous jpeg images to be recorded. here are example images showing the 'starting point' for a picture 'Summer Meadows' taken in Herefordshire. a more favourable tonal range for initial adjustments in 'RAW' and future image management. This is visible both when inspecting the image in-camera and as a 'thumbnail' via the computer file-browser and of course. This facility gives a useful indication about how the image could appear as a split-tone without 'Channel-Swapping'. as the standard rendering of the IR image by jpeg often gives a pleasing split-tone result.uk or by 'phone: 01953 889324 Click the 'continue' link below to discover more about 'Channel-Swapping' Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow continued Clive R. in 'Bridge'. Haynes FRPS 'Channel-Swapping' Before looking at the method for 'Channel Swapping'. some of which will frequently be 'off the scale' both for JPEG and the in-camera histogram display. . it's essential to make a pre-set 'white balance' for IR.IR Camera-Conversion Specialist: More information about Advanced Camera Services (ACS) can be found at: www.White Balance For best result. This is simple to do and here's the basic procedure which you'll need to adapt for your own camera. then use the facility. A custom white balance will typically provide a more evenly distributed channel-to-channel histogram for each of the three RGB channels and thereby.co. RAW or JPEG? I prefer to shoot with RAW files as they offer greater flexibility and control. JPEG files can be used but offer less flexibility when we need to exploit the range of tones.advancedcameraservices.
The display will of course vary from camera to camera (and naturally. There's evidence of some 'split-toning' and a general impression about how the image will begin to look without 'channel swapping'. from scene to scene). If the 'white balance' hasn't been done.The image above is similar to the camera LCD 'playback' display at the time of taking. the chances are that the replay image will appear very pink (something like the RAW version below). .
The image above is the RAW file version of the 'Summer Meadows' picture . make adjustments to the exposure settings . Clarity .and the starting-point for 'Channel Swapping' Camera RAW .that is to say.The Starting Point Open the Image as a 'RAW' file and if required. although not an exposure control. the controls for: Exposure Recovery Blacks Fill Light Brightness Contrast and possibly.
Above: Camera RAW dialogue box upon opening 'Channel-Swapping' . this is best achieved by an Adjustment Layer: This is what you do: Open the selected image Make an Adjustment Layer (click on the haf black / half white circle at the base of the layers palette) and from the drop-down list choose Channel Mixer .The Procedure: This option will frequently give pleasing results and as it's simple to do.see below: . Advice: for better control. it's worth using the option as part of the 'workflow'.
change the Red Source Channel to 0% and set the Blue Source Channel to 100% as illustrated below: Next .In the Channel Mixer dialogue box: With the Output Channel set RED.
see below: At this stage the image may display a range of muted colours...Go to the BLUE Output Channel and change the Blue Source Channel to 0% and set the Red Source Channel to 100% Click OK . . depending upon the content of the scene..
click on 'Auto' (yes. not something most of us would normally do I know.in fact it produces a result which is difficult and certainly less consistent. please click on the link below Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow continued Clive R.Above: Image appearance after 'Channel Swap' and before 'Auto Levels' . . than that obtained by adjusting the Levels 'sliders'.as described on the next page To continue. and make an Adjustment Layer for 'Levels': In the dialogue box. activate the image layer. The purpose of this is to give a really useful boost in contrast . but have faith). Haynes FRPS Next.
Above: Layer order .Above: Adjustment Layer. 'Levels' dialogue box showing ''Auto (levels)' button.
Above: The result of 'Auto Levels' .
those seeking a noise-free result are likely. I hope this information about Digital IR has whetted your appetite and that the images that accompany this piece will give an indication of the riches that are out there . DI IR will tend to be less granular. then increase the ISO and. annoying) 'halation effect'. magenta and cool slate blues 'mapped' over the grey-scale content. Cameras fitted with large sensors will exhibit less noise than those with smaller ones at the same pixel-count. to be disappointed. however. This can be added to the DI IR image by careful application of blur and/or glow filters. Noise can also be tackled in Photoshop or by using a separate noise-reduction program (such as Neat Image). An example would be a scene which includes a blue sky and some clouds. Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow . Bit Depth & Gamuts and the Adventures Working in 'Lab Color Mode' Clive R. it is. 'Channel-Swapping' will tend to give a result which offers a blue-shaded sky with the remaining areas represented by tones of peach. at the present stage of technology.and such factors do inject an element of serendipity into the process .and something of the 'excitement the old days' remains.Following 'Auto-Levels'. IR Halation Glow IR film also displayed a sometimes 'interesting' (though at other times.awaiting discovery. underexpose slightly so that the image 'Histogram' is 'pushed' a little to compensate during the workflow by adjusting 'Levels' or 'Curves'. for those wishing to emulate IR film. whatever. Flares. as 'light bounced' off the film pressure-plate. apply 'curves'. Should you wish to view the image without the 'Channel-Swap' then simply switch-off the 'Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer'. Conversely. the 'serendipity factor' hasn't been entirely eliminated by DI Camera IR . Haynes FRPS . colour tone. At this point you can decide to work with the partially toned result or convert to monochrome. of course. apricot.just like the 'old days' really! It's an advantage to make an 'Action' for the 'Channel Swap' and 'Auto-Levels' procedure as this will probably become the most frequent 'quick-process' route for pleasing results for many subjects. the result is frequently of a pleasing tonal range. with care. however. 'Image Noise' One of the attributes of IR film was its gritty. granular appearance and many considered this to be part of its attraction. try: Image > Adjustments > Auto Colour Image and / or Adjust > Auto Contrast The above are naturally content and contrast dependent but sometimes they give that little extra . Noise can be reduced by choosing a low ISO setting and reduced still further by a noise reduction filter at the RAW stage. And for those who enjoy an element of uncertainty in their photography. in the 'invisible spectrum'. The image will now equate to the jpeg impression referred to earlier. However for some images the following additional 'tweaks' may prove of service. Some noise will be present.continued Hot-Spots. imagedependent.
In my experience is was far more apparent when using a non-IR converted digital camera where an opaque filter had been fitted to the lens to ensure that only IR is transmitted. a wider aperture will reduce the hot-spot considerably. I mentioned that. This is not a fault with the camera or the IR conversion or even with the lens (although IR may exaggerate a tendency inherent in any given lens that is not discernable under normal. Hot Spots A common occurrence is that of a 'hot-spot'. I have noticed the occasional barely discernable hot-spot using my IR-converted Nikon D70. using an opaque (IR) filter and stopping down to f32. Occasional Flares and Softness Earlier. Odd streaks and flares also may be experienced from time to time . visible-light. This usually stems from the fact that we're asking the camera to record a range of tones (light) beyond the spectrum that the camera and lens combination would have been designed for (visible light 400nm . so unless depth of field is critical. DI capture is now far less wayward and more predictable. say. Fortunately the occurrences are rare and when they do occur can be readily dealt with some deft tonal correction work (levels and/or curves) in Photoshop.Hot-Spots. However. occurred when shooting with a non-IR converted camera. Hot-spot problems are usually more pronounced apertures from. .650nm). I found that the hot-spot can occur only under certain exposure conditions and that it's largely unpredictable.again a vagary of IR capture. From time to time one can still encounter the odd and unexpected quirk from IR capture. The severe 'hot-spot' illustrated in Fig 1. but only to a point. This is certainly true. unlike the days of film-based infrared photography. conditions). that is to say a circular light-toned area usually noticeable in the centre of the image. f8 or f11 and beyond.
Only by experimentation will this become evident. Should softness occur. 'a' and 'b' allows the colour channels to be adjusted independently of the Lightness channel. fidelity and control. the 'error' is probably the result of the auto-focus mechanism simply getting it slightly wrong from an infrared point of view. Lab mode separates Lightness (L) from the two colour channels . There's also the consideration that not all lenses will transmit IR wavelengths the same or as effectively. When using a zoom lens the 'error' may not be constant or apparent at all focal-lengths. stop-down to a considerably smaller aperture to gain greater depth of field or use manual focus with a guestimate as to the forward or backward tweak required. Even one's most favoured and expensive lens may not perform as well as expected at the IR end of the spectrum.Above: Typical 'Hot Spot' as RAW file Original with Lens Aperture at f32 Softness This is the other occasional problem. A specialist-company IR converted camera will have been carefully adjusted to compensate for 'back-focus. although one is absolutely certain that the focus was accurate. The effects can be weird and bizarre but for the right image. This is hardly surprising considering that the manufacturer would have been primarily concerned with ensuring the fidelity of the optics for visible light. If in doubt. The separation of 'L'. or invert one or both colour channels. 16 bit working is preferred. the results can be both striking and successful. At this point you may choose to swap to 8 bit working (Image > Mode > 8 bit). the image appears soft and the focus a little off. Changing the tonal response of Channels depends upon one's previsualisation of the outcome . Modes There are some advantages to working in 'Lab mode' (Image > Mode > Lab Color) and these are worthy of exploration. Bit Depth For better image processing. Also you may wish to save on file size and utilise features only available in 8 bit. Sometimes.those of magenta/green (a) and blue/yellow (b). For example. Set your RAW file reader to open as 16 bit and remain with 16 bit operation until you feel that further tonal and colour adjustment will not benefit from continued 16 bit working. you may wish to invert (make negative) Lightness only.
can sometimes result in a wider than anticipated colour gamut. Gamut Modifying and extending the image histogram. There's not a 'follow this route to success workflow' for exploring the tonal opportunities in 'Lab'. Please remember that not all tonal changes will affect all images equally and that the results obtained are. referred to 'false colour'. To give an indication of the variables that one can enjoy. Haynes FRPS Adventures with Lab Color Mode Note: If you've arrived at this page from the 'Know-How' contents list via the 'Lab Color Mode' 'link'. the following series of worked examples will help both to point the way and to provide an introduction. 'a' and 'b' channels can offer certain advantages and these allow further excursions and adventures. As mentioned. the ability to separate the 'L'. Note: for output to currently available and affordable inkjet printers. however. . bearing in mind that other applications and high-end commercial printers can take advantage of wider gamuts and more accommodating colour spaces. To help with clarity and workflow. understandably.and a willingness to experiment. Click the link below to continue and discover more about 'Adventures with Lab Mode' Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow continued Clive R. However. opened as a RAW file via Adobe Bridge and managed in Adobe Photoshop CS3. To change the colour profile: go to Edit > Convert to Profile and make your choice. wider gamuts such as Pro Photo RGB may be preferable. one should maintain maximum fidelity throughout the image workflow so far as is practicable. if so. the results of opting for wider gamuts may not be apparent in the final print. Many photographers will already be using Adobe RGB (1998) as the default colour space as this is frequently preferred to the more modest sRGB space. I'm going to use my image of 'The Skiff & The Hulk' picture as an example. using an in-camera Custom White Balance (very important. Please remember that the results will be image dependent and the examples illustrated here may not replicate with your chosen image. Channels and Layers. you'll find a 'link' at the base of this page. The example images were taken on an IR converted Nikon D70. however for some images and procedures. I can do no more than 'raise the lid' of this particular 'virtual box'. Experimentation will be the key. for good practice. more of which shortly but first a short note about 'gamut'. I've included screen-grabs which illustrate Histogram. therefore the tones and colours cannot be wrong . courtesy of a digital Pandora. you may wish to return to the beginning of the section about DI IR Capture & Workflow.only more or less pleasing or appropriate. It may therefore be preferable to alter the colour profile of the image to one which offers a greater colour-space. Within these 'pages'. converting to other 'modes' and applying unusual processes. see previous pages). Exploring 'Lab mode' presents a whole new palette of possibilities.
my apologies to Mac users but I'm more familiar with a PC) The starting point is the image shown below.(Note: 'quick key' / 'short-cut' references in brackets. Above: Original RAW file . apply to a PC .
as below. we have seven independent options at our disposal. convert to 'Lab Color' (Image > Mode > Lab Color) see below Make sure that you can see the Channels palette. Channels and Layers After opening the image. the difference between 'b' alone and the combination of 'b' / 'L': Click/highlight Channel 'b' (quick-key = Ctrl + 3) Make certain that the eye icons for each of Channel is 'on' (but only 'b' Channel is highlighted / active) . Channels Palette Beginning to explore the flexibility of 'Lab mode'. To understand the principle we'll look at just two. experiment by Inverting (making negative) each channel. As you can see. that is to say 'L'. This simple exercise will illustrate the independence of each channel or combined Channels. 'L'/'a'/'b'. 'a'. If it's not visible. 'L'/'b' 'a'/'b'. or combinations 'L'/'a'. 'b'.Above: Opening Image screen-grab showing Histogram. go to Windows > Channels.
(see below). Edit > Undo Invert (Ctrl + Z) to restore the image to the starting point. Above: Screen-grab showing 'b' Channel 'Inverted' To continue this exploration Next: Undo the change above. Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow Adventures with Lab Color Mode continued Clive R. to our original. Haynes FRPS . as only b (blue content) has been inverted.'b' Channel Active Next: Go to Image > Adjustments > Invert (Ctrl + I) and the image will be subtly different.
this is done by choosing one Channel. 'Lightness' Channel. will be very different. see below: The effect will not be to everyone's taste but you can begin to understand how valuable access to individual channels can be. for this example. now incorporating 'Lightness' Channel. go to Edit > Fade Invert (see below) and adjust the slider control. invert this combination (Ctrl + I) and the result. If you wish to experiment with reduced intensities of 'Invert'. say 'b'. then shift-clicking on.The next step in this introduction is to include more than one channel to 'Invert'. : . Two Channels will now be highlighted Once both Channel 'b' and 'Lightness' Channel are active.
see below NB 'Edit > Fade' is only available immediately after making the Invert command.Also. . as an option in the Fade' dialogue box. different 'Blend Modes' can be tried .
What we seek to do is to expand the tonal range by adjusting 'Levels'. this reveals a narrow 'spike' of Histogram information which represents the narrow range of tonal information captured in this channel. To follow this route.Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow Adventures with Lab Color Mode continued Clive R.note this 'Window' option is not available on pre 'CS' versions of Photoshop. For the working example. Adjusting 'Levels' controls of the amount and distribution of magenta / green for the Channel 'a'. see below: . Haynes FRPS For an alternative and more flexible approach we're going to explore the subtle (and sometimes not-so-subtle) use of Level changes to Channel 'a' and Channel 'b'. Adjusting 'Levels' for 'Channel b' will control the distribution of yellow / blue offering a very different tonality. go to Window > Histogram . white and mid-level sliders to produce the result shown below. To do this go to Image > Adjustments > Levels. Look at the Histogram (if not visible. I adjusted the black. return to the image starting point. in which case observe the histogram as we proceed via 'Levels') Activate Channel 'a'.
we'll look at a further step This is a useful refinement to control both 'a' and 'b' Channels in the same dialogue box. see below: . Click the link below to continue and discover more about 'Adventures with Lab Mode' Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow Adventures with Lab Color Mode continued Clive R. Haynes FRPS After once again returning again to the example image starting point.do this by clicking on Channel 'a'. Begin by activating both Channel 'a' and Channel 'b' . then shift-clicking on Channel 'b'.Whilst the 'Levels' dialogue box is open. it's also worth experimenting with changes to the 'Output' settings.
this will reveal a choice for the independent adjustment of 'a' and/or 'b' Channel. Click on the drop-down arrow adjacent to the word 'Channel'.Go to Image > Adjustments > Levels. see below: One example of this independent control is shown below .
where the humble 'Brightness & Contrast' is worthy of exploration.For finer adjustment and extended control of tone I suggest that you choose 'Curves' from the Image > Adjustments menu. For those who enjoy a not-so-subtle approach. The Adjustments menu also presents other options . a wild example of 'Curves' applied to 'Channel a' is shown below: .
the straight 'Channel-Swap' image is shown below.For comparison. .
The various Layers include tonal variations based upon the methods described. . From the screen-grab below. Layer Masks and Adjustment Layers for both Curves and Hue & Saturation. you'll notice that the Layer structure is more complex.I could continue to present ever more variations to Lab Channel adjustments. I include a more fully worked example of the image. To complete this section. however it's best if you begin to experiment with your own images.
except for Duotones for which the mode needs to be Grayscale. .see below. The most usual methods will be: conversion to mono in the RAW file reader. 'Desaturation'. Gradient Map. monochrome via 'Channel Mixer'. Haynes FRPS Working in Monochrome For onward conversion and management of an image in monochrome. you'll need to swap back to RGB Mode (Image > Mode > RGB) for any toning and tinting. The image below has been opened in Bridge (CS3) and converted using HSL / Grayscale and ticking the 'Convert to Grayscale' box .Click the link below to continue and discover information about 'Working in Monochrome' Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow . Before opening.continued Clive R.TIFF file. it's a matter of experiment to discover which one suits any given subject the best. Converting straight to 'Grayscale' (Image > Mode > Grayscale) is not recommended as the 'conversion' is frequently bland (although one can have the occasional 'lucky strike') and as colour channel information is lost. Please note that wherever possible you should use an 'Adjustment Layer' as this will allow maximum flexibility and editing. the options are. the image can be treated in several ways.'Calculations' (definitely worth exploring) or conversion to Lab mode utilising the 'L' channel only. Black & White (CS3 on).psd) or . it can be helpful to decrease the 'Oranges' slider as this will give some increased contrast (in this image in the sky and water) and give a 'boost' prior to opening. or once opened as a Photoshop (.
however. When opning the image in Photoshop the 'noise' will probably be at an acceptable level.When reducing the level of the 'Oranges' slider. you may notice an increase in 'noise' in RAW preview. In this instance five separate 'Curves' Adjustment Layers were used to target specific areas of the image. . The image below shows the same image after adjusting 'Curves' to provide more localised contrast and 'bite'. magnifying the image will show that the noise is minimal.
continued Clive R.Click the link below to continue and discover something about 'IR and Water' Digital Infrared Capture & Workflow . In fact IR allowed me to 'see' further into the water with greater clarity than with my eyes alone. The example included here isn't beautiful but it does reveal that IR penetrates well below the surface. . Haynes FRPS IR and Water I recently experimented by shooting test images of goldfish in our garden pond and I was surprised to discover just how far IR could 'see' into the water.
an open mind and a willingness to experiment.In conclusion I hope that in opening the lid of this particular Box of Delights and that you'll be keen to make adventures further into this fascinating 'Invisible World'. Key elements to success are: previsualisation of your final image. You'll soon discover which methods enable you to express yourself best. .
only I have passed it through neatimage once to reduce noise.8mm iso100 hide exif Full EXIF Info Date/Time Make Model Flash Used 28-Aug-2003 11:19:49 Sony Cybershot No .previous | next original The original. Sony DSC-F717 1/8s f/2.1 at 11.
Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance 11.8 mm 1/8 sec f/2.1 100 +2/3 (-1) center weighted (2) (6) Step 1 .
. then create a duplicate layer.First open the original image in Photoshop or photoshop elements. Step 2 Open the Hue/saturation adjustment and change the green saturation to -100%.
.Step 3 Then change the master hue to +124 or so. and the master saturation to +50 or 60.
.Step 4 Use a Gaussian blur of about 3-5%on the Backgroud copy layer to reduce noise levels.
Step 5 Change the Backgroud copy layer to a color layer. .
Step 6 Use auto levels on the Backgroud copy layer. .
Step 7 Open the Hue/saturation on the Backgroud copy layer and change the red saturation to -100% .
.Step 8 Flatten the layers.
and your done.Step 9 Use Auto levels to bring out some contrast. .
This guide should apply to most consumer-line Canon cameras. When you get the filter. and what is necessary to do so. It may also be wise to have a tripod handy unless it is a very sunny day. Since most of the light is blocked out by the filter.Infrared Workflow TH E M A TE R I AL S When I created this guide. I had just purchased the then-new Canon S2IS. The next item you're going to need is the Hoya R72 Near-Infrared filter. much longer shutter times are required. but you'll have to do some research to see if your camera can support screw-on filters. I've loved it these few years. it'll look almost black. Lensmate has the best adaptor solution for the S2IS. and it's served me well. This filter will block out all light except the near-infrared spectrum. You can get one here: Hoya 58mm RM-72 Infrared Filter You'll also need a way to attach it to the camera. C R E A TI N G TH E I M AGE .
See the manual for your particular model if you're not sure how to do this. Take a look around and find something interesting to photograph. Know that anything containing chlorophyll will be strangely white. I have created an automated Photoshop action that will perform the transformation for you. and water is usually nearly black. Ensure that the camera is set to Automatic White Balancing.If you don't feel like following the step-by-step instructions provided below. You may be surprised that some ordinarilly dull scene becomes interesting and full of life in infrared. . A workflow is provided for you to follow. Experiment with different surfaces to find out how they look in near-infrared.Attach the lens adaptor and filter to the camera. Perform each step as indicated below. Your image prior to any post-processing should look something like this: P O ST P R O CE SSI N G Now we begin post-processing the image into something more appealing. Clicking on the step number opens an image showing exactly what you need to do.
which can be made visible using the Window menu. From there you can access the action via the Action Pane.Under the Blue Output channel move the Blue slider to 0 and the Red slider to 100 Step 6 . so feel free to play with the values I have provided.Duplicate the background layer Step 3 . you have processed a new IR image! Notice that the image has a grainy look to it.Here we can see the false colors really starting to form and create a pleasing image.Step 1 . they will be smoothed out a bit in the next step.Use the Auto Levels function on the Background Copy layer Step 7 . change the Hue/Saturation layer type from Normal to Color.Finally.Open the channel mixer Step 4 .Under the Red output channel. Next. Congratulations.This is the Photoshop action that performs the above steps automatically.Open the image in Photoshop Step 2 . Most versions of Photoshop will allow you to simply drag the downloaded action into your main Photoshop window.Reduce the Reds saturation to about -85 Step 9 . Don't worry if the changes appear splotchy. You can achieve some interesting effects by changing the Hues and Saturations on this adjustment layer. move the Red slider to 0 and the Blue slider to 100 Step 5 . This is common for infrared images. then choose the Actions menu item.Reduce the Magenta saturation to about -45. TH E R E SU L TS . You can always return to this step to fine-tune your image Step 10 . but can be minimized if you wish by using noise cancellation software such as Noise Ninja or Neat Image Photoshop Action . create a new Hue/Saturation layer Step 8 .
Enjoy! .Your resulting infrared image should look something like below. or view my gallery of infrared images (Flickr).
Please feel free to use this image to follow along in Photoshop if you wish.. – Different Cameras will require different exposure times. I have had great luck with my Canon 50mm f/1.08-JUL-2005 Starting Point – Unprocessed Image This is the "Starting" image for the next series of Steps. My Canon 300D takes several/many seconds to get a good exposure.. Some lenses may flare unacceptably.8. it depends on your camera’s IR cut . Exposure Suggestions A few things to note: – Some lenses will work much better than others. a hood may help.
clouds. I bracket everything when shooting: Shutter Speed (usually somewhere between 2 and 10 seconds).filter (normally a good thing). – Interesting pictures have trees. The actual exposure of this image was 1sec at f/4. You need complete control over your camera.0 ISO200. Once you got the scene setup switch to manual focus and put on the IR filter and start shooting.6 and f/8 seem to work well). – I don't try to meter with the camera. etc. and sky or something similar for contrast. Again.0. but Photoshop can help with some advanced noise reduction.. Usually my exposure times are much longer (i. strong sun). – Shoot in MANUAL mode.e. – Sun angle / sun position. take lots of shots and bracket. With the IR filter on. – Shoot RAW if possible since you will have more latitude to adjust exposure if necessary. (Maybe only 1/2 to 2/3 to the right?). (More below) Initial Exposure: I usually start with something like 6 secs. I just use the histogram to judge exposure. 4-8 secs). It won’t be the same as a traditional good exposure histogram. Use a shutter release cable or use the self-timer. I just use the histogram as my exposure guide. all become important variables. f/8. time of day. – The Hoya R72 IR Filter is nearly OPAQUE so setup your first shot composition WITHOUT the filter on. ISO 400. you won't see anything through the lens. I don't try to meter using the camera.e. Over time you will be able to better understand what a good histogram looks like for your camera when shooting IR. and ISO setting (usually 200 or 400). but you will see something on the LCD after the picture has been taken. In general lower ISO settings will help reduce camera noise.. . but peak of summer works well around Noon (i. Check through the EXIF data in my IR gallery for some further examples. Not sure how I got so lucky. – A tripod will be required. but the sun angle and strength must have been just right. I need to experiment more with these. water. You will also be able to adjust White Balance if necessary. Aperture (f5. – I usually take multiple shots of the same scene and bracket almost everything since you don’t how it will look until you start working in Photoshop. but will increase your exposure time. so it is a tradeoff.
8 1s f/4.Canon 50mm f/1.00 sec f/4 200 +1/3 (-1) matrix (5) (6) program (1) .0mm iso200 hide exif Full EXIF Info Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance previous | next 08-Jul-2005 14:23:14 Canon Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL No 50 mm 1.Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .0 at 50.
I have been shooting RAW just because it allows more control after the shot has been taken.. Step 0 — Bringing your file into Photoshop Download your images – if RAW. .IR — Step 0 Note the Histogram which is somewhat left of center. Note: Exposure and White Balance will make a difference on your final result. convert (to tiff or jpeg) and bring into Photoshop..
but it fills the screen nicely for these screen shots. Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .so there might be some trial and error – in general I leave White Balance to the default camera setting (automatic) and have gotten decent results. Photoshop Elements 3.0 or Zoombrowser & Fileviewer). (100%. So here is the initial image in Photoshop Elements 3. but I have not tried. 75%. If you have full version of Photoshop you should be in great shape. You can probably get similar results with other software.Canon 50mm f/1. Normally I would never look at an image at 33%. 50%.0 has worked fine for me. and 25% give the fairest views of your image.8 previous | next . which is somewhat left of center.0. For editing. For Raw conversion I have been using the Canon supplied software (DPP 2.) Note the histogram.
but can make a huge difference.IR — Step 1: Noise Reduction This step is not required. You could also use the built in noise reduction filter in . Step 1 — Noise Reduction This is actually an OPTIONAL Step – create a duplicate layer of you background for noise reduction and general retouching. For noise reduction. I have been very happy with the Noise Ninja plugin.
it is not required.Photoshop. Noise can be pretty apparent after you are complete with image editing. but you might. I have not had the greatest results with the Elements 3. Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel . I am really happy with Noise Ninja. Once you are done with processing. the noise may become very apparent. Honestly. As mentioned above.Canon 50mm f/1.0 noise reduction filter. Otherwise. use your favorite plug-in. You don't have to run noise reduction on your image. However. but you will notice a big difference if you want a 'clean' looking file. some people intentionally add noise (grain) into their IR images as it is more authentic looking. but might make the image look cleaner.8 previous | next .
Alternativly you could use the Auto Level Function in 'Curves' which actually I like better..IR — Step 2: Auto Levels Histogram is now more 'normalized'. If you have a good shot. Step 2 — Auto Levels Create a Level layer and select 'Auto' Levels.. tree leaves and clouds will appear close to White in color at this point and sky will be Orange and/or Black. This will swing the colors significantly.8 .Canon 50mm f/1.! Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .
then you can skip this step. Step 3 — Channel Mixer (Swap Red & Blue Channels) From here on it is about shifting colors..IR — Step 3: Channel Swap (Red/Blue) Making Red equal Blue and Blue equal Red.. It is easiest to do this with the Channel Mixer by creating a layer and setting . If you want Red sky. If you want Blue sky you will need to swap the Red and Blue colors in your image.
so ironically Elements 3.com/phototips/photoshop-elements-curves. Unfortunately the Channel Mixer is not a standard in Elements 3.0 is better in this respect. Leave Green 100% Green.8 . Elements 4.) Photoshop Actions that will run in Elements 3.0 (not in 4) that will be very useful are the Channel Mixer and Curves.Canon 50mm f/1. you could probably get a similar effect using Hue/Sat function to shift Hues. (If you have the full version of Photoshop. but Channel Mixer is MUCH easier.0 and needs to be downloaded and installed as an action.html?search=curves&bool=and If you do a Google Search you will likely find other places to get actions for Channel Mixer and Curves. Visit the following web link and read carefully about how to install the applicable actions.0 does not support adding this action.Red to 100% Blue and setting Blue to 100% Red. Yes.earthboundlight. you already have the Channel Mixer. (More on this below). http://www. Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .
Step 4 — Levels (Clip Back and White Points) Create another layer for Levels and adjust White and Black point. Boosting midpoint may help as well (or may not).. It seems beneficial to clip the Black point a bit and perhaps even the White point a little depending on the image exposure.IR — Step 4: Clip Black & White Points Boosting Contrast. Input might be ..
250 (for Black. I would not want to be without it. Experiment! The result should be that the Sky becomes darker Blue and the Trees become more White.. the prior image. Like the Channel mixer. You may not notice a big difference in screen shot above vs.. (See previous step). Mid.0 just like the Channel Mixer.Canon 50mm f/1. however. you will when you do this yourself. and White) but this will be image dependant and you will have to tweak the settings. Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .something like: 15. but can be added to Elements 3. Curves is very powerful and versatile.8 .10. It is one of my favorite tools. Optional Extra Step (not shown above): Create a Curves layer if you need and use it to further adjust your image to your liking. 1. this is not a standard feature in Elements.
. Step 5 — Hue/Sat (Adjust Sky & Cloud Color) At this point your image should be pretty close. Create a Hue/Sat layer and adjust to your liking.IR — Step 5: Adjust Hue and Saturation Shifting Colors and Tweaking... . but you will want probably want to further adjust Hue and Saturation.
Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel . I just broke it up in this example so you can compare. If you compare this to the previous image you should be able to see the differences in the sky and clouds. I kinda like the Yellow tone in the tree leaves..In the above example I modified: Blue +10 Hue and +10 Sat to make the sky deeper in color and modified Cyan +10 Hue and -50 Sat (yes minus) to pull out the Cyan that was in the clouds.. see the next step.Canon 50mm f/1. but if you don't like it and want them to be more White. which of course you could have done combined with the above adjustment. You will have to experiment a lot and play around with Hue settings as it will be image dependant.8 .
IR — Step 6: Optional Adjust Hue and Saturation Shifting Colors and Tweaking. Compare to the previous image and you should see the change in the tree leaves..8 .. Step 6 — Hue/Sat (Adjust Tree Color) Here I am adjusting Hue/Sat layer and changing the Lighness of Yellow +75 so it becomes more White and less Yellow. I could have combined this in the prior step..Canon 50mm f/1. Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .. but broke it apart so you can see the difference.
Save as JPEG level 10 and you are done.e.. PBASE) resize at 800 wide (bicubic sampling) and sharpen with Unsharp Mask (maybe 85%. .. (Resize for the Web) If you are going to the Web (i..IR — Final Image: Resize and Sharpen Friendly File Sizes The End.8 radius. and threshold of 3). 0.
Seriously. Why.. .? I am not sure – I guess I get a little carried away.Canon 50mm f/1. but it probably keeps people from stealing your images and bandwidth from PBASE for use in their websites..8 08-JUL-2005 Final Version — Framed Frames and Mattes Goofing Around OK. it might be a little bit cheesy. I can't help myself so I gotta make a frame for it.Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .
Canon EOS 300D Digital Rebel .00 sec f/4 200 (-1) .0 at 50.Canon 50mm f/1.0mm iso200 hide exif Full EXIF Info Date/Time Make Model Flash Used Focal Length Exposure Time Aperture ISO Equivalent Exposure Bias White Balance Metering Mode JPEG Quality Exposure Program Focus Distance (6) 08-Jul-2005 14:23:14 Canon Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL No 50 mm 1.8 1s f/4.
Remember the saying that what you see is just an illusion? That is actually true. Chart taken from Wikipedia . microwave. lomography. x-rays. and many others. think of ultraviolet. micro and macro photography. In this article we will talk about infrared photography. and that what you see is the only thing you’re ‘made’ to see. To give you an idea of the things you can’t see. These compose the electromagnetic spectrum. and radio. light photography. Look above you. a type of photography that captures the unseen beauty of nature made possible by technology. That is because the light that touches its surface is seen by you. What is Infrared Photography? First we need to know what is infrared. infrared. and only the visible light part is what we can see under naked eye. called visible light.40 Breathtaking Examples of Infrared Photography • There are many types of art photography out there that show a new way of viewing things like infrared photography. you’ll probably see your ceiling. gamma rays.
Before the introduction of color photography. I think that would be like looking at an old television’s static.If you’ll take time to study the chart above you’ll be amazed at how little our eyes can see of our surroundings. You can either use a standard camera or a digital camera. Here is his Flickr page. Tutorial includes how to setup everything up to post-processing. I’m not a photographer nor do I claim I know how to do infrared photography. you basically take a peek into the unseeable by manipulating your tools. before you even begin infrared photography you need to have a grasp of what it is you’re doing in order to pass on the knowledge. So. infrared photography is an attempt to view the world in a different manner. especially when they wanted to achieve infrared photography. but now can due to advances in technology. In a sense. similar to using a microscope to see little life forms or using an x-ray to see through things. but alterations and post-processing is needed to achieve a great photo. the point here is. Straightforward Path Infrared by ilimel . photographers used filters and black and white negatives to manipulate the final result. Examples of Infrared Photography Take note that you can buy their prints if you happen to fall in love with them! Don’t forget to click on the links for more IR photographs. We only see a portion of the world as it is. I did some research for people who want to enter infrared photography and found this very in-depth guide by Rob about infrared photography. and that’s a good thing. Imagine seeing every wavelength. In infrared photography. I am simply so amazed by the process that I thought I’d share this with you. Venturing through Flickr I’ve been awed by the amazing world out there that we can’t see.
Orchard Infrared II by dingodave .
iNfraRed series – terengganu 1 by shin-ex .
Barn in Infrared by Pak T .
The gilded River by Anrold .
Barbados Infrared by Infrared-Land .
Arte moderno en IR by Goku Abreu .
Cloudy Day by RoeiG .
Monroe Arts Center-IR by Marc Kohlbauer Warm Feelings IR by caithness155 .
Zen Dream by RoieG .
Butterfly by gary99099 .
The Secret Garden by failingjune .
Ecco’s Horns by Djinn Photography .
Infrared Trees by Danny Valentine .
Infrared HDR Lake by lorni3 El Torito at Pine Beach by RTsan .
The Golden Path IR by caithness155 .
Mount Stewart by Paul Hanley Lake Cumberland Infrared by GothicAmethyst .
Caterpillar by smurfzombi .
Infrared Sunrise by konczy77 .
Japanese Road by Enkased Itzel by The-Definition .
Summer or Winter by Litz Sanz .
Untitled by d3sign .
Niagara Falls by Kofi Kumi Summer time at Upton by Dave Dupere .
Watermane by boomslice .
Fantasia di Primavera by Giacomo Cattaruzzi .
Springtime III by blackdaddy .
Horses Dreams by MichiLauke .
La tour by Anrold .
Sydney Opera House by La-Vita-a-Bella .
Midnight Palace by 32tsunami .
Bale IR by BilSign .
It’s a Frog II by tlbendele .
The Old Man by Gwarf .
Pano Bramhall Park 1 by Okavanga .
Le vieux moulin by Anrold .
50 Stunning Examples of Infrared Photography for Your Inspiration P ost ed in I n spi r at i on 28 0 d ay s ag o • W rit t en b y: advertise here J am eel K h an • • • .
pictures captured in infrared light have an amazing look. you will not have to modify your camera. you can either buy a special digital camera which is somewhat sensitive to IR waves or convert your normal camera in order to capture infrared light. Such filters block most of the visible light and only let infrared light to pass through. Since you need special cameras to capture IR photos. infrared light sensors allow the camera to catch any light which is not visible to human eye. In this way. This is done with the help of special gear. however. By using IR filters. black 4. you will drastically reduce the waves that hit the camera’s sensor. the only difference in infrared photography is that the image sensor is sensitive to infrared light which lies between the visible and microwave portions of the electromagnetic spectrum.• • 83 9 Infrared photography can generate some truly awesome and splendid photographs. Infrared Filters An infrared filter can be defined as a filter that captures infrared light by filtering out the visible light. Hoya 67mm RM-72 Infrared Filter . However. Such films are extremely expensive. Therefore. What is infrared photography? Basically. IR filter increases the exposure times. infrared photography or IR photography refers to capturing images in infrared light. There are different methods to capture IR photos. Hoya 58mm RM-72 Infrared Filter 2. Below. Infrared light is not normally visible to human eyes. Infrared photography does not vary extensively from normal photography. NEEWER® 58MM – IR720 Infrared Filter 5. Opteka HD² 58mm R72 720nm Infrared X-Ray IR Filter 3. if you buy these films. Leica E39 UVa/IR Filter. we have mentioned some IR filters that we would recommend: 1. You can also purchase IR filters that will filter out the visible light and will only leave IR light. and require special handling. You may need to use a tripod and turn up the exposure because of the amount of light coming through the filter. Some special film cameras with infrared film are also available.
1. Merang. Casa Loma 3. Setiu. Malaysia .We hope that this showcase of infrared photography will inspire you. Wallaman Falls IR 2.
Horses Infrared .4.
Angry Mood .5. San Isidro 6.
Crazy Car .7.
8. Cavagna Ottavio .
9. Spring Wolni Infrared .
Tropical Garden Infrared . Silent Under Construction 12.11. Fort Uitermeer.
13. Pasir Ris Park .
Ice Age 4 Premiere in Amsterdam . Golden Waterfall 15.14.
16. Polar Bears Could e Here? .
Staffordshire .17. Rugeley.
Laguna de Plata Infrared 19. Botanical Gardens .18.
20. Chinatown .
21. Circular Trellis Infrared HDR .
Jbm IR D60 080719 23.22. Infrared Dream .
24. Infrared Jonh Deere Harvester . Infrared Train Track 25.
Moon Gate Infrared .26.
27. Country Road II Infrared .
Pink Tree Blue Earth Infrared .28.
Infrared Addict .29.
Infrared Addict .30.
31. Red Tree Infrared .
Infrared Shot 33.32. Infrared HDR Palmer Park Colorado Springs 34. Infrared city .
Infrared Friesian .35.
36. Infrared LI .
Fined if We Do 39.37. Futog 38. Fine if We Don’t. Urban Ghost Trees Redux .
My Rinjani Dream (Infrared) 42.41. Infrared Wreck .
Garden – Infrared . Infrared 44.43.
45. Cinta Fitri .
Infrared House 47.46. Infrared beneath the trees .
Infrared on LSD .48.
49. Infrared Spaceship .
50. Infrared HDR Palmer Park Colorado Springs .
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