digital IR: custom white balance

A mate on gave me a tip on achieving better digital infrared photography. Darren Greene suggests taking a custom white balance from a patch of grass with the Hoya r72 fitted. This will reduce the overall red-ness from the picture and will allow some blues through. He suggests f/8 for about 1 to 2 seconds in bright daylight.

photo: infrared and Nikon

Field of Dreams

Originally uploaded by Hugh_C.

Shona and myself took a little trip down to Dungarvan in Waterford primarily to eat at The Tannery, but also to kick back and relax. I took a few snaps before breakfast this morning, a glorious day with blue skies and big clouds, perfect for a bit of IR.

This is the first outing with the Hoya R72 and the Nikon, and the results are reasonably good. I’ve yet to crack the focusing thing though, since IR doesn’t focus in the same plane as visible light, and so I’m pretty much guessing. And seeing as you can’t see anything at all through the viewfinder, composition generally has to be salvaged in post production.

photo: infrared idea redux

I suppose I’m a little despondent about the digital IR results to date, but there again it’s early days. Seeing that the old Yashica will be fixed sometime in the near future, I wonder what results I’d get if I loaded it with XP2 and used the Hoya R72. The Yashica also has the advantage of 28mm, 50mm and 70-210mm lenses. It will be interesting to see. I wonder if I can get into the grounds of the bowling event in Dun Laoghaire in September so that I don’t have to shoot through the fence. Although I suppose the fence gives credence to the perception of elitism around this sport in Ireland.


There’s always the bowling green in Herbert Park. I need some good light.

photo: infrared Dun Laoghaire Bowling Club


bowls in Dun Laoghaire 

Here’s the first IR shot I’m relatively pleased with. I’m finding it difficult to get the shots in focus, perhaps because of the long exposures involved. This one is no exception, but at least it’s relatively focused.

Exposure: 1 sec (1)
Aperture: f/4.9
Focal Length: 22.2 mm

I can’t remember what the ISO was but probably 50 or 100. It’s a shame that this info isn’t recorded (as far as I can work out) as part of the EXIF data. I must crank up the ISO to 400 and see if this helps with the exposure length and thus focus. I guess it’s a trade off between noise and focus.

ir idea

I’m wondering if it would be possible to paint a scene on a very long exposure using remotes like in Risky or Steve Winwood. Maybe a cluster of remotes all strapped together. The only radiation source being the ir from the remotes, natural or tungsten light sources eliminated. Have to wait for the equipment to arrive and a tripod to do the test.In the mean time, getting ready to shoot for a wedding. The groom is wearing tungsten rings for men and they look amazing with the ir view. The bride with her white gold engagement ring is a bit harder to capture correctly with this setup. I’ll update with more information when I have the time.

first IR picture


Here’s the first IR result. Got the Hoya R72 today. Handheld in front of the ixus – no mount or tripod.

photo: infrared photography using a Canon Digital Ixus 500


I’ve been looking at flickr a lot lately and have come across some amazing infrared photgraphy which, until very recently, I didn’t realise was possible using a digital camera. I suppose I hadn’t thought about it too much, but I’ve decided to try for myself.

The first thing to check is to see whether or not my camera (Digital IXUS 500) is usable, and one way to do this is to point any remote control at the camera, press a button and see if the IR beam is visible. Happily for me, it is – see above.

The next thing to do is find an IR filter, and searching around the web, it seems that a Hoya R72 will do the trick. Seeing that I’d like to share this filter with my other cameras, a 52mm filter seems optimal.

Finally, I need some sort of device to attach it to the camera, and with the guidance of publicenergy on flickr, I ordered one of the adaptor tubes from hkdcplus.

So now I am in wait mode – both filter and adaptor & step up ring are in the post. The results will be posted here.