Infrared Madness!

In my adventures of shooting film, I’m always trying to push myself farther – to be more creative, funky, interesting… Basically, if I’m not moving forward, I’m just stagnant.

Sunday, I’m shooting a Trash the Dress session for Amanda, a bride whose wedding I did several years ago. We have some seriously fun stuff in store. I decided I wanted to shoot my first roll of infrared film. I learned about infrared film in college, but never had a chance to shoot any. Here’s my chance!

There is a LOT involved in shooting infrared film. First off, it has to be shot with an older, manual 35mm camera. I can’t use my super fancy CanonEOS1, because the sensor inside the camera will fog the film. So I’m busting out my old Canon AE-1. I have to load and unload the film in complete darkness, so I will be standing in my closet, with a note on the door that says, “Stay out, loading film!” I learned how to do everything by touch when I was in college, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

The process of shooting the film is different as well. I have to put a #25 red filter on the camera to shoot. When shooting, I have to focus, then change the setting a notch over to the infrared focus dot on the camera. Technical! Throughout the shoot, the camera can’t be left in the sun at all. Temperature control is very important.

Below, you can see an example of an infrared photograph (I didn’t take the photo, I found it on Google). The film reacts with the foliage and turns it white. There are several reasons for this reaction, such as the chlorophyll florescence of the leaves, and the green color (red cancels out green on the color wheel). It gives the photo an amazing, dream-like affect. Skin tones remain true, but there can be an aura of light around the model, depending on the heat coming off their skin. I really hope this happens.

I’m super excited, and somewhat nervous about trying something new. Stay tuned for the results. Hopefully I don’t embarrass myself too badly!

Peace out!

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