Digital infrared on Troopers Hill

I’ve shot infrared film before but this is the first time I’ve tried digital infrared. I wrote recently that I had a DSLR converted to full-spectrum, primarily for astronomy use. With the right filter, it can also be used for infrared landscape photography.

I decided to use an Astronomik 807nm IR-pass filter which is actually designed for taking pictures of planets through a telescope. It allows infrared light through but blocks all visible light (at least that’s the theory – I can actually see a small amount of visible light through my filter and the camera can pick out small amounts of blue and green light in some of these pictures).

The filter fits behind the lens, in front of the SLR’s mirror. This means you can’t use an EF-S lens as it protrudes too far into the body and would break the filter, so I’m using my widest EF lens, a mediocre Canon EF 28-80mm II. I could have used a different filter screwed on the front of an EF-S lens if I wanted to go wider.

Skies appear dark but foliage appears pale when seen in infrared, so it can take a moment to get your head around the unusual effect. But it is pretty cool – and now I know for sure that my infrared camera is working properly. Just need to wait for another clear night so I can get out with my telescope 🙁

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