Well THIS is a little different! 🙂  Allow me to explain.

Infrared photography is something that has interested me for a long time, but I’ve never dabbled in because it requires having a specially modified camera to capture infrared light (or filters that require REALLY long exposures to capture what little bit of infrared naturally leaks in).  Digital cameras have special glass that sits in front of the sensor that is designed to block out all types of light except what is visible to our eyes.  Well, infrared cameras have that glass swapped out with a different glass that’s coating allows for infrared light to pass through, but not visible.  Generally speaking, most people then convert infrared images to black and white for SUPER nice, contrasty images with rich blacks and bright whites (you’ll see some of this on Picture of the Week later this year).  As time has progressed, however, so has technology, and now you don’t have to have a dedicated camera to shoot IR (infrared), but simply a specially modified camera that allows for various filters to be dropped in.  If you want to shoot normally (visible light), put that filter in.  If you want to shoot IR, put that filter in.  Astrophotography? (yep, that was yet another dedicated camera) – Just drop that filter in!  So nice and convenient! 

So what exactly are you looking at here?  This is an IR image, but in it’s “natural” color, rather than being flipped to black and white.  This is what I see through the camera as I’m shooting, and as I’ve been experimenting with IR, I’ve had multiple images where I’ve just thought the look of the IR coloring was neat.  I wanted to share this particular image for two reasons – 1) because I legitimately like it and 2) because I wanted to introduce those of you who may never have seen this (or known what you were looking at) to the interesting spectrum of light outside of what our eyes can see.  I’ll share more later, most of which will be in black and white, but for now, welcome to the world of IR! 

More (visible light) next week!

–Dan Thompson

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