Infrared eye

Stunning effects are yours, no Photoshop required. Instructions.

Step 1

Get your infrared capture device.

Option 1: Convert a DSLR, ILC, or compact to infrared capture. Some firms that will do this are Lifepixel, MaxMax, or Spencer’s Camera.

Option 2: If your camera «sees» infrared light (see main text for how to tell), get an infrared filter such as the Hoya R72 or Cokin P007.

Option 3: Scour the used market for an infrared-sensitive camera such as the Fujifilm IS Pro or Sigma SD10.

Step 2

Choose a subject. The best subjects for color infrared are foliage and people,» says Hayag. «Healthy green leaves strongly reflect infrared light, and infrared can do ghostly things to human skin.» For lighting, he recommends shooting on bright cloudless days with the sun at its zenith or at your back.

Step 3

Set your camera. Capture your images as RAW files, with your white balance set to Auto and ISO to the lowest sensitivity possible. Hayag shoots in aperture-priority mode at f/9.

Step 4

Focus with care. Infrared light focuses to a different plane than visible light. Converted cameras are often recalibrated to focus at the infrared wavelength, but if you’re using a threaded infrared filter, focus before mounting it, then test with the filter in place, touching up focus manually.

Final Step

Touch up in processing. Hayag fine-tunes the color in his landscapes by clicking on leaves with the Sony RAW converter’s Custom White Balance eyedropper.

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