WHICH Infrared film?

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Ka, Mar 8, 2004.

  1. Ka

    Ka Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    New York
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Is there a difference between infrared films?

    Which will produce the finest grain? I don't want it to be big "mushy" grain.

    And, which developer, etc, are best suited to the preferred film/effect?

    The ultimate subject will be a bride, as unconventional as possible. (I'll test it out on my daughter first.)

    Does anyone use infrared in studio with strobes? Is that a silly question?


    Thanks...
    This will be my first roll of infrared
     
  2. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Yes, there is a difference. Several differences, in fact!

    Kodak HIE has the "deepest" sensitivity, it extends farther into the infrared than any of the others. It also has the coarsest grain. Konica IR750 and MACO 820c have less IR sensitivity, but a lot finer grain. They are also slower than Kodak's. I have used both of these with very good results. They also have the advantage of being available in other sizes than 35mm.

    The characteristic look of HIE is partly due to halation (spreading of light within the film), since it doesn't have an anti-halation layer. MACO make a version with the same effect, MACO 820c "AURA". I have only tried this in 4x5", where the effect is unnoticable due to the larger film.

    Any developer will work; it all depends on what you prefer. I have used Ilford DDX, Pyrocat HD and FX-2 with good results on both MACO and Konica. I haven't used Kodak HIE, since I rarely use 35mm.

    I know that some people use IR in studio with strobes, but I haven't tried this myself.
     
  3. ThomHarrop

    ThomHarrop Member

    Messages:
    172
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I have done HIE 35mm IR film in D-76 1:1 with pretty good results. Biggest trick I learned with it was use an IR filter. Although a deep red (number 29) works ok, the sharp cutting 87 0r 89 create an amazing effect.

    You can buy a plastic version of these filters made by Lee for a relatively small amount of money.
     
  4. Ka

    Ka Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    New York
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Supert. I'll order the Maco or Konica then. It's for my Hassy. I appreciate your advice. I actually have a deep red filter as well.
    ka
     
  5. AllanD

    AllanD Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2003
    Location:
    Wiltshire,UK
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    You will have a problem problem with any IR film that retains significant visible light sensitivity when used with a red filter. This includes Maco 820 and Ilford SFX, but not (I think) the Konica film. There may be some IR effect, but there will be significant density due to the visible light (i.e. they wont have the effect you are looking for )

    I tried one roll (!) of Maco 820 (in 120 format) using a red filter and the results were disappointing, with, to me, no IR effect whatsoever. I guess that a proper IR filter is required with this film. The film is fine grained. The EI is a notional 100, although Maco don't tell you this ! I never worked out a personal EI; I just derated according to the filter factor.

    BTW, I made the mistake of washing the Maco film in water that was slightly too warm, resulting in the anti-curl coating dissolving. This made a right old mess. I have never had this problem with any other film.

    I have used a fair amount of Ilford SFX in 120 format with their SFX filter. This produces a quite surprising amount of "IR effect" on a sunny day and is what you might call "medium grained", with no halation. The fact that you can't see throughout the SFX filter is a serious impediment to wedding photography! But you need the filter to get the IR effect. The notional EI of SFX is 200, one stop faster than Maco 820, giving you more margin for hand held. It half the price as well, so you can feel less bad when it all goes wrong.

    In theory, flash photography is a rich source of IR. What the proportion of the output is in the IR region (and hence, what "look" you get) depends on the flash unit. I guess the thing to do is put an true IR filter over the head a powerful flashgun (strobe) and start experimenting.
     
  6. glbeas

    glbeas Member

    Messages:
    3,307
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2002
    Location:
    Roswell, Ga.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If you don't have a true IR filter then two layers of unexposed developed color slide film is approximately equivalant to an R72 filter. Also you might try 3 or more layers of color neg film leader that is thoroughly exposed.
    Color film dyes are transparent to IR, otherwise the dust detecting IR scan in the ICE systems wouldn't work.
     
  7. efikim

    efikim Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    Shooter:
    35mm
    The Ilford SFX filter also makes a good filter for the Konica film, and possibly the Maco, and may be easier to get hold of for tests.

    I'm not convinced by the notion that flash always gives useful infrared, as i've just been checking with studio flash and a Fuji finepix (that i've just bought in part for verifying the lighting balance of a flash system - instant feedback should shorten the learning curve). The finepix will record an IR image through the SFX filter in sunlight, but records nothing with the flash (even though the same settings give a completely white image without the filter). Has anyone here had success using flash and IR?
     
  8. glbeas

    glbeas Member

    Messages:
    3,307
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2002
    Location:
    Roswell, Ga.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    A flash makes pretty good IR output comparable to daylight. Just remember that the Finepix may have an IR blocking filter in it and you are using the residual sensitivity through that for a very low EI. Wide open at even a quarter second is way more than you can get from a flash. Are you using a built-in camera flash or an external? If external and you can do multiple flashes on one frame try it.
     
  9. efikim

    efikim Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I was using studio flash - a couple of old Bowens mono-silver heads (no idea of their nominal output, but far greater than on camera flash). (The flash meter reading was f64 (unfiltered); lens aperture f4, and there was no image at all - histogram just a line at the black end)

    I don't think the camera allows multiple exposures, so I can't try that.

    I will try some more modern camera accessory flashguns, but need to get some batteries first, as I hardly ever use them these days, and the batteries I have are dead.

    When I said the Finepix records IR through an SFX filter, I should have said through a number 87 filter. I'll check how many stops it loses next time I have some sunlight to play with!
     
  10. glbeas

    glbeas Member

    Messages:
    3,307
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2002
    Location:
    Roswell, Ga.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You might try moving the flash head in very close and see if an image shows. The you can calculate backwards to a semi realistic guide number for that setup.
    I have heard from some folks that an 87 may not work for some digis, if you have some transparency film maybe you could test the ad hoc R72 filter on the finepix and see what happens.
     
  11. gr82bart

    gr82bart Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,299
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Ka,

    For my Hassey, I have bought and used respooled Kodak Aerial 2524 IR film from www.davidromano.com. It's the same emulsion as Kodak HIE and works great.

    Art.
     
  12. efikim

    efikim Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Thanks, you're right! The sun is shining so I checked with daylight, and the 87 filter requires about 10 stops more exposure. I'll check the extra exposure needed with my studio and 'camera' flashguns next time i set them up. (I've got some ND filters I can use to reduce the non-IR exposure with)
     
  13. VJ Bell

    VJ Bell Member

    Messages:
    2
    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2003
    Location:
    Ipswich, Que
    I want to try some Kodak HIE, however, what speed should i rate the film at, and what is a recommended development time with D-76?
     
  14. efikim

    efikim Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    Shooter:
    35mm
  15. Ka

    Ka Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    New York
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Mike - What an excellent source of Infrared Information. Thank you very muchly!
    ka
     
  16. glbeas

    glbeas Member

    Messages:
    3,307
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2002
    Location:
    Roswell, Ga.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
  17. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

    Messages:
    2,016
    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, M
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan
    I thought that Konica was just as sensitive to the visible spectrum as the Maco 820 and Ilford SFX films.

    I have found that the Maco 820 film works best with either the 88A or 87 filters; anything less and you won't see the IR effect. Ilford SFX gives a good IR effect with an 89B/R72 filter.

    I've never heard of an anti-curl layer on the Maco films. I know there's an anti-halation layer on the 820c Precision film. How warm was your water?

    Diane :smile:

     
  18. mark

    mark Member

    Messages:
    5,264
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
  19. shinn

    shinn Member

    Messages:
    92
    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2004
    Location:
    Bezerkeley,
    A good friend of mine was kind enough to give me a book called: “Infra-Red Photography, A Complete Workshop Guide.” It was written by Hugh Milsom and covers exposure, development, filters (including yellow and orange) and how they perform. The only drawback is that Maco was just releasing their IR film and there is not too much info on it. I’ve found it extremely useful; it’s chocked full of incredible images and a bunch of Portfolios.

    The ISBN# is 0 86343 373 1 Fountain Press, 2001. There may be an updated version.

    Happy Days
     
  20. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

    Messages:
    2,016
    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, M
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan

    I never am able to get much in the way of an IR effect with a red filter and Konica film. I'll be glad when all of my supply is gone! :sad:

    The Maco film, when washed, should have a blue/blue-green color to the water when you pour it out of your tank. This is normal for this film.

    The MACO 820c films (there are two, one is just 820c & the other is 820c AURA) work best (i.e. get the best IR effect) with either an 88A or an 87 filter. I'm glad that these films are available in 4x5 & 8x10 sizes. :smile:
     
  21. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

    Messages:
    3,049
    Joined:
    May 15, 2004
    Location:
    Wisconsin, U
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks! I've never shot IR, but it is something I've wanted to try. This & the other sources are very informative!

    Jeanette