Infrared Photography in HDR

I’ve been interested in infrared photography for more than thirty years and have really embraced the concept of digital infrared photography as being both practical and fun. And the motto of my blog is to Have Fun with Your Photography!

There have been two kinds of digital IR capture I’ve wanted to experiment with. First was the idea of infrared panoramas made by sticking multiple infrared images together but have been discouraged because of the lack of an affordable way to display such images. The second type of IR shot that I wanted to explore crafting HDR (High Dynamic Range) images from an infrared converted camera.

The base exposure for the “before and after” images was approximately f/11 at ISO 400. For the “before” exposure, the shutter speed was 1/800 sec which was fast enough the freeze the leaves in a series of three bracketed exposures—keeping the aperture at f/11. Then I processed the files using Nik HDR Efex Pro to produce the image you see above.


Long exposures caused produced subject motion in parts of the tree that moved during a series of exposures that ranged from shutter speeds of six to 13 seconds with a Cokin IR filter. I waited but the wind didn’t slow up, in fact the weather only got worse. I processed the three bracketed files using Nik HDR Efex Pro software to produce the image you see here. The blurred leaves in the final image added a kind of ghostly effect that I feel adds to the mood of this shot because. Tip: Using a camera that had been converted to IR capture would have produced shorter exposure times and eliminated the blurring.

The HDR IR technique is not in my book, “The Complete Guide to Digital Infrared Photography” but you can just Google HDR to find out how to capture and convert images into High Dynamic Range photographs using RAW or even JPEG files.

Special Deal for this blog’s readers: If you want to save money when converting your camera to infrared, use the coupon code “farace” at LifePixel.

Author: Joe Farace

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