Friday, August 7, 2009

A Mid-Day Shooting Suggestion: IR

About two years ago, I had my Canon SD800 converted to an IR-only camera. I jumped on a plane and did some shooting in Mono Lake, CA.

Sure, I also took my color digital SLR cameras (Canon 1Ds Mark III and 1D Mark II). I got up early and stayed out late to catch the beautiful light and colors of early morning and late afternoon with those cameras.

During the midday hours, when the light was too harsh for color landscape shots, I shot with my IR-only camera. Here's one of my favorite shots, taken at South Tufa.

The top shot is the original. The bottom shot is the same shot enhanced with Topaz Adjust - my favorite plug-in this week (as you might have guessed).

One of the cool things about IR cameras is that you can shoot all day without worrying about "bad" lighting – because you are recording IR light. Another cool thing is that you can create some beautiful landscapes pictures effortlessly - pictures with a dark sky and white clouds.

If you have an old camera hanging around, compact or SLR, consider converting it to an IR-only camera. Good fun for sure.

I found it interesting that after shooing IR for about a week, I started to "see" in IR.... picturing how a scene would look when photographed with my IR camera.

You can get a discount on your IR conversion from Lifepixel by using this code upon checkout: RickSammon.

You can order Topaz Adjust (and receive other discounts on certian plug-ins) on the Pluginexperience.

See the light - the IR light :-)


Samantha Decker said...

I want to try IR photography - why do so many people have a dedicated IR camera? Is it easier than having to set up the main camera every time?

The shot looks great with Topaz Adjust, also my favorite plug-in!

Rick Sammon said...

hi sam.. .yes... go IR converted. for one thing, you don't need to use a slow shutter speed and tripod.

see the IR light!

Joshua said...

Where do you get a camera converted to IR? How much does it typically cost?

Rick Sammon said...

I do my conversions at Lifepixel... as I mentioned in my post :-)

Cost is a few hundred bucks.

Good luck!


Anna said...

Rick, Thanks for all your great tips. I found my very old Canon Rebel (300D) and am going to have it converted to IR. Lifepixel gives you a bunch of choices regarding the conversion and this has confused me. Did you just go with the simplest choice--Simple IR--or with enhanced color or deep BW IR? Which do you recommend for the most flexibility?

Thanks again,


Rick Sammon said...

Hi Anna

Decisions, decisions, decisions! It's really up 2 U. Try the vivid if you are undecided.

Good luck. More important. Have fun!