Ir Photography

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Soeren, Nov 24, 2004.

  1. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Yes I know it's not the right time of year... or is it.
    Well For my Yashica 124 G I got this heliopan 715nm IR filter. I was thinking I would try the Maco 820 C (Aura) IR film. Now, besides the Woodland effect which of cource work's best with leaves on the trees and the dramatic sky which effects will I get and when. Those of you who shoot IR, Which subjects, time of year/day. In short spill it :tongue:
    I also have a 665nm filter that I was planing on using on my QL17.
    I would like some comments and sugestions on the subject in general.
    Regards Søren
     
  2. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    I'm a rank beginner with infrared film, just beginning to try it this past spring. Unfortunately, my project for using IR film fell through. Just puttering around, I tried the MACO Aura film and liked the results. My only advice with this film is bracket the hell out of it. I used Hoya R72 and #29 filters. The only other film I've tried is Ilford SFX200. With that film, the R72 gave a nice mild IR effect and the #29 didn't do much, if anything. I still have 3-4 rolls of the MACO film and some 35mm and 120 SFX200 I'm going to try next spring.
     
  3. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Thanks Lee. Is the IR effect strong or subtle in your experience ?
    Did you get the best results at noon or in the evening ? I read the articles in Black&White but I would like more info on shooting situatins and subjects that lend themselves to IR.
    Regards Søren
     
  4. jim kirk jr.

    jim kirk jr. Member

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    Hope I can help a little.I've been using Maco 820c for almost two years and I use it in all weather,all lighting conditions.You're going to need to use the right ISO for the time of year your shooting in.I usually change ISO that I shoot at depending upon the time of year and increase or decrease exposure according to the lighting conditions I'm shooting in and the filter I am using for the image.You can bracket to make sure you have usable exposures(I do
    as each exposure can have a different quality)but you'll need to make sure your starting ISO is correct or you may have a roll of under/overexposed negatives.All lighting sitautions are good for IR(including overcast)once you have your ISO where you want it.Also in some lighting situations a darker or opaque filter will give you more contrast too.Experiment with the light and filter combo's-it's part of the fun.In short(my opinion and experience)you can use IR for whatever images you want and usually with a difference from regular film.

    Jim
     
  5. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    Let's keep in mind that our light meters are not calibrated for IR. They see visible light, not the near IR that the film sees. One using their light meters are guessing at best. What usually occurs when one finds the "right" exposure on there meter, is that they have found the ISO of the film for a standard condition, such as a sunny day.

    Kodak Infrared exposes best at f/11 and 1/125s on a sunny day through a red 25 rendering about a 200/250 asa once compensation for the filter is taken into account. But again, this is under the assumption that one is using a meter that is not calibrated for IR.

    Many have gone to the expense and trouble of creating an IR meter. These I would assume work fairly well, but again, the sun doesn't tend to change on it's light spectrum makeup and it's output.

    With MACO film I found that 2 seconds at f/16 gives me full shadow detail through an 89b (about 695nm cutoff filter). I develop them in PMK to make platinum density negatives. (The exposure is the same for silver print negatives, I change the dev time to make a less dense neg)

    At $20 a sheet for 12x20 I don't like to make mistakes on exposure, and I sure ain't gonna bracket! Admittedly, I "cut my teeth" on 120 size Maco, but the exposures are the same.

    I prefer the Non-aura version, if I'm using a piece of film that large, I don't want halation on it. I've also been in touch with Hans O'Mahn and there is a new Infrared film on the horizon.

    The emulsion tends to get a little soft and it scratches very easily. I run into problems with sheet film if I develop in a tray with corners scratching each other. Roll films are ok, but when I pull the film out of the spool, it strips the sides of the film on the spools leaving hair like pieces of emulsion on the film. If I pull the film out as I roll the spool, not dragging the film out, it works much better for me with no "hairs".

    Also, with PMK, I use 2+2+100 and develop for about 14 minutes at 74F in a jobo for alt process negs, but they print on silver very nicely too.

    BTW, it's the "Wood effect" :wink: It was named after the scientist that discovered the effect. Which while I'm on my soap box, keep in mind it isn't chlorophyll that reflects ir. It kills me that I still see this in print. Ir is reflected off the inner cell wall of the vegetation. This is the same reason that Skin looks so nice in IR. It isn't the light reflected off the surface of the skin, with all the blemishes, it's the sub cutaneous layer that reflects the IR that exposes the film. Essentially, it's the amount of inner cell surface (in plants and people) that allows how much IR light is reflected.

    Good luck on your IR shooting,
     
  6. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I was under the impression that chlorophyll fluoresces in IR, and that's why healthy foliage is bright, while dead and diseased is dark?
     
  7. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    There is no cellular pressure in dead cells. If there is no pressure the cell can't reflect IR due to the cell wall being collapsed. This is (more or less) the reason that deciduous leaves reflect IR better. Larger cell walls to reflect. Evergreens have less water, smaller cell walls, for example, and reflect less IR.
     
  8. rbarker

    rbarker Member

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    I've used the non-aura version of Maco 820c, and prefer its look with an 89b filter, as well. As you probably know, Søren, the IR level varies with season, time of day, and with latitude, because of atmospheric absorbtion. The example below was shot in September at 37°10', and the exposure was about 8 stops down from an incident reading of the ambient visable-spectrum light, as I recall.

    [​IMG]

    I've read of a fellow who modifies conventional meters to read IR light, but I haven't actually tried one of his meters. Sorry I don't have a link, but if he's still doing it, a web search should find him.
     
  9. jim kirk jr.

    jim kirk jr. Member

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    Personally,i've found my meter to be "correct" in as much as it is a
    starting point once my ISO is set.Then I make my exposures-sometimes bracketting if I want negs with different qualities(more grain,more contrast,etc)something which I find valuable myself.Each negative is an individual image,for you it's each sheet.I'm sure if you chose to you could make more than one image of a scene to see which it is that you prefer.I set my ISO for the time of year and over or under expose each frame according to the lighting conditions for that scene(most of which are different over the
    entire roll)and have had no problems.Just a different way of working I guess-I
    havn't had issues with mistakes(other than the-"why did I make this image to begin with types :wink:

    I too am looking forawrd to the 840 film next year.The last contact I had with them didn't say if it was a new film all together(different spectral sensitivity)or just an extended sensitivity version to 840nm of the 820c film.So if you hear anything please let us know :smile:
     
  10. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    I hear you on that first one!

    But this is an interesting point on the new film. The huge difference that some folks are getting used to is that MACO is panchromatic film (unlike the orthocromatic characteristics of HIE). I wonder, exactly, how much difference another 20nm of sensitivity will change the "look" of the IR.

    Kodak "works" with the red 25 because its orthochromatic. It might be nice to have less visible light sensitivity instead of more IR light sensitivity. I would think that MACO film may see more success if one could hand hold the camera. My exposures are 30 seconds to 1 minute at f/64. There are times I would like non-blurry clouds.
     
  11. jim kirk jr.

    jim kirk jr. Member

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    Tell me about it-I've had exposures as long as 4 minutes at f/19.Not fun when your outside hoping that no breeze comes along and blows something on the front of the filter.
     
  12. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    My wife has a hard time understanding why a "perfect day" is no wind when its above 95 in the high desert. (she shoot tri-x and doesn't quite get the multi minute exposure thing.)
     
  13. BradS

    BradS Member

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    This may be a dumb question but, I think it's related...

    Does IR film require special handling?

    I ask because, I have a changing bag that says "Not safe for IR film" on it (actually on the box it came in) and always wondered what that meant.
     
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  15. rbarker

    rbarker Member

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    The short answer is, "Yes."

    In most cases, it is recommended to load/unload the camera in "total darkness", with emphasis on the "total" part. Many seemingly opaque materials are essentially transparent to IR. That includes many changing bags, and some plastic cameras, too.
     
  16. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    Odd... this is the first time I've heard of ANYTHING fluorescing under Infra Red light. Ultra Violet, yes, certainly ... but IR?

    Come to think of it ... fluorescence is - or would be - the conversion of "Ultra" - or "Infra" into visible light ... so no specialized film would be necessary, anyway.
     
  17. jim kirk jr.

    jim kirk jr. Member

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    Depends on the film.Kodak IR I would say yes-in darkness.With Maco 820,konica 750 shade is good enough in my experience.Shade being under a tree or the non-sunlit area in the back of my car(tinted windows)or in a
    building with no lights on(only the light to see with).I've even heard of some
    who do "nothing different with Maco 820 than they do with TRi-X")Most warnings for IR film apply at present only really to Kodaks films(BW and false
    color)at least in my experience.
     
  18. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Eh, no, lots of things give out IR light when irradiated with visible light. Fluorescence is the "conversion" of light to light with a
    longer wavelength. What we usually think of as fluorescence is absorbtion of UV light followed but emission of visible light. So when visible light is absorbed, some of it may be emitted as IR light. I thought I read somewhere that this is what happens in chlorophyll, so that "reflects" what amounts to more than 100% of infalling IR light.
     
  19. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    This excerpt is from the text I use:

    "The explanation of the white appearance will be clear from a consideration of Figure 55, which is taken from the work of Willstaetter and Stoll, and which shows how light is reflected internally in a leaf. The light passes through the epidermis and the palisade cells, but is scattered diffusely and even reflected back towards its source in the spongy parenchyma, the interstices between which are filled with air. Mecke and Baldwin pointed out he similarity of behaviour between the leaf and freshly fallen snow (!!!), the bright reflection of which is due to the presence of air between the small ice crystals. If snow is pressed or tamped, it becomes darker and transparent. The same occurs in case of a leaf. If the air is removed by the leaf being placed in a vacuum, and if it then placed in water to fill the air spaces, no difference results which is visible to the eye, since the chlorophyll absorbs most of the light. In the infrared, however, to which chlorophyll is transparent, the bright reflection of the leaf is almost completely lost, and the leaf becoms relatively transparent."

    Many things are opaque to our eye but to different wavelengths it is transparent or partially so. X-rays are and example.

    As to using a light meter, the variable in IR light and visible light is the make up of the light itself. If one uses a meter and measures 4EV, it doesn’t say how much of that is IR light. As the sunlight passes through our atmosphere, blue light is blocked and IR passes. That's, of course, what makes the mountains glow red in the evening (Alpen Glow). For those without mountains, I'm truly sorry. Therefore if we rely upon an instrument to measure something it's not calibrated for, one is basically guessing as to what the exposure really should be.

    Personally, I my experience has shown that our highlights (such as the ir highlights we look for in IR film) get enough exposure, perhaps, overwhelmingly so. It's the shadow areas that need more exposure, hence, "Expose for shadow, and develop for highlights". I expose as I do in order to bring up shadow areas in my images to I don't end up with entirely non printable shadow area.

    Blue light fills shadow areas. Those who shoot color film may use a filter to compensate for that. So if the light in the shadow areas is mainly blue light, then measuring the light with a light meter in the shadow areas is folly due to the utter lack of IR in the shadow areas. Blue light bounces a little better than ir due to it's wavelength, hence it fills shadow areas where IR does not.

    This is what I use to determine my exposures. YMMV.
     
  20. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    :surprised: Darn, Next time I have to stay up and follow the post's. :smile:
    Thank you all for your answer and explanations.
    Ralph, Nice Picture. But stopping down ? You gave 8 stop's less exposure than metered ?
    Ole and Robert your explanations about Cells and flourescence was some usefull reminders. Mr Noise :tongue: brought up a good point. I know that maco recommends subdued light in the 35mm case but as I recall the 120 films are not as critical because of the paperbacking.
    Ole I would like to know more about materials flourescensing IR radiation.
    And last, will my Rodinal do as developer :D
    Regards Søren
     
  21. Woolliscroft

    Woolliscroft Member

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    I am going to make myself very unpopular here, but I have had better IR results with a D.....l camera than I did with film. Sorry, I guess the things had to be useful for something. Apparently, it only works with some models. I have an Olympus C8080 which is particularly good in this role.

    David.
     
  22. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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    You had a good result since it is a simulation of what IR woiuld be,
     
  23. Shmoo

    Shmoo Subscriber

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    I use the non "aura" version of Macophot 820 IR in sheet film (4x5). I metered available light and used a red filter and found that I needed to open up 4 stops instead of 3 to get "the effect". I also have used the wratten 87 filter and opened up 5 stops and had good results. I won't use an f-stop smaller than f32 on large format.

    With Konica 750, you can put a 25 red filter on lens and meter thru the lens if you have that capability. F-stop is almost irrelevant, but the impact decreases with the smaller aperture...usually keep it at f22 on med. fmt.

    Yes, you can use rodinal on Macophot. Check the digitaltruth massive development chart online.

    The best thing about IR is that while a lot of photographers abandon shooting during full midday sun, you can be out there getting terrific shots!!! And as for the wind, you can use it to your advantage during long shots to get a rather ethereal look. Also, the Konica 750 has a really nice smooth grain...some portrait photogs like to use it b&w portraits.

    Have fun.

    S
     
  24. roy

    roy Member

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    Are there any benefits in using staining developers with the different types of I/R film ? Which film and developer combination do frequent users consider would give the best effects in the current growing season ?
     
  25. donbga

    donbga Member

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    Absolutely! PMK 1:1:100 @77F for 12.5 minutes with Kodak HIE. Highlights are not blown and shadows aren't blocked. Try 1/60 to 1/125 @ f11 - f16 with a 25 or 29 red filter.

    Don Bryant
     
  26. donbga

    donbga Member

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    Aggie,

    Using a digital camera to capture IR exposures is no simulation. Used with an opaque IR filter such as an 87C or 89B record light in the IR range. However the exposures tend to be quite long and may have a fair amount of noise. Also the captures have to be desaturated to yield a neutral monotone rendering. Some digital cameras can be modified by removing the IR filter covering over the CCD or CMOS array, improving the sensitivity to IR light making exposures much shorter.

    Hope this helped,

    Don Bryant