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About 3 weeks ago, I managed to borrow an (Infrared) IR modded camera from a friend and it was only until last weekend that I had the chance to get to shoot with it. The weekends before this were very gloomy and not ideal for IR shooting.

Seeing the sunny weather on Sunday, I made a trip down to Gardens By the Bay again.

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Greeted by one of the most prominent view in GBTB

Previously, I would not have considered this view to shoot. But since I’m out there trying to see what looks good in IR and what not, I just shot. After the custom white balance set on the camera, all greens will become white and everything with a strong red cast… So, most of the things can only be decided behind the monitor for me. But in general, I can “feel” how it will turn out but due to my lack of experience in processing IR, I also cannot guess how it will turn out completely.

So all my shots are shot based on my ‘feeling’ on composition and lots of guess work. Whether or not they become great subject after the post processing is another… which I will select during the post processing time.

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Here’s another view that in usual colors, won’t turn out very nicely… But in IR, the trees become more “obvious”.IMG_5383-Edit

 

Now comes my favorite subject in the whole GBTB. Personally, I feel that this structure looks great in both color and IR. And honestly, I didn’t expect the skies to turn out in this manner. It had a “dark aura” around this building…. kinda dark, but I like it!

And for the processing of the above shots, I only did a simple channel swap and some contrast boost… And I thought that’s all. It was until today that my friend had shown me an alternate workflow to it…

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With that workflow it’s possible to get some cool effects too… Just that I need to be extremely careful with the color noise introduced when I’m happily tuning the colors in the curves. The above show some color noise, but I left it alone.

Now the next thing to try this IR mod cam on is the stars… Hope to be able to see some decent stars in my upcoming short trip..

Technical Stuffs

Equipment: 400D (IR 720nm mod). Meaning, I can only shoot IR of wavelength 720nm.
Lens: Samyang 14mm f2.8

The reason I used the Samyang 14mm is because it’s a manual lens with a long focus throw, and it’s pretty wide.

A few notes when using a modded IR camera. If you have replaced the filter glass element of the with a different thickness IR filter, your auto focus will be slightly off. This is the case for the modded 400D. It’s slightly off when using auto focus. And also, it does not have live view. So focusing manually will be a pain when not using a camera with micro adjust (if it’s not too severe). Thankfully, the long focus throw of the samyang makes it easy to focus.

The other thing to note is the exposure metering. Since it’s capturing different light, it requires a different metering. In short, the camera metering is practically useless. A guideline I tried using with success is over exposing the scene by 2 stops from the normal light meter in partial metering mode (400D does not have spot metering). This had got me most of the scene exposure correct.

The post processing techniques is as described here: http://www.clubsnap.com/forums/showthread.php?t=316576

For the last shot, I just played with the curves of different color. There’s a whole new ‘universe’ in the curves to explore and try out..

But for now, I will just play with this IR camera and the basic processing.

Regards,
YK

 

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