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Infrared Glow Effect Workflow

Journal Entry: Sat Sep 13, 2014, 11:19 AM
Hello Folks,

this time I wanna present an enhancement of my already presented IR Workflow from 2012 (… ). This effect results from a time when IR images were made analog with high speed IR film. Infrared shots at this time often had an eerie glow, partially caused by film halation. With this workflow I wanna show you how to build and enhance your IR shot. Within this tutorial several tools e.g. Photoshop and Nikon Capture NX2 are used to convert the IR image. Nevertheless, it should be no problem to use other editors.Furthermore, the here used values for channel swap, etc. are examples of given values. By using these, the converted file includes the look that you wish to show, in my case the yellow looking style. Choosing other values will give different results – feel free to develop your own style.

The riginal image was shot with a Nikon D90 IR rebuild (Shutter Speed: 1/320 - Aperture: F/8.0 - Focal Length: 18mm - ISO Speed: 100). Open your file in the editor which is able to open you file format, here its Capture NX2. Set the white and black point and save your file as *.tiff or *.jpg whatever you prefer.
1 by mIkeschwaRz

Afterwards open it in your editor, here Photoshop, and do some optional adjustments in contrast. Your IR shot wil look like this:
3 by mIkeschwaRz

The next step is the channel swap, therefore add a new layer with channel mixer and set the following values for the adjustment:
Red: R -110% G +118% B +121%
Green: R 0% G +100% B 0%
Blue: R +100% G +82% B -110%

Your IR shot will look like this:
4 by mIkeschwaRz

Now add a new color/saturation layer and set the following values for the adjustment:
Red: C 0 S -100 L 0
Yellow: C 0 S +50 L +50
Green: C 0 S -100 L 0
Cyan: C 0 S -69 L 0
Blue: C 0 S -100 L 0
Magenta: C 0 S 0 L -100

Your IR shot will look like this:
5 by mIkeschwaRz

Now reduce the three layer to one and continue with a double click on the background layer to add a new one.
6 by mIkeschwaRz

Set the layer style to hard light and duplicate it. Your IR shot will look like this:
8 by mIkeschwaRz

Now set to the duplicated layer the filter gaussian blur with radius 15,0 pixel.
9 by mIkeschwaRz

Set the duplicated layer style to hard light or multiplication with e.g. 75%. Your IR shot will look like this:
10 by mIkeschwaRz

Again reduce your layers to one and finally change shadow/highlight. Here I used shadow 5% and highlight 0%.
11 by mIkeschwaRz

If necessary set curves to a s-shape or values you prefer. Here no additional curves were set and the final results after adding my banner looks like this IR shot of Schloss Lichtenstein:
Schloss Lichtenstein IR by mIkeschwaRz

I hope you enjoy this little tutorial and try to find your own way to enhance your IR shots with effects like this one. If, then share with us :D


mIkeschwaRz's Profile Picture
Dr. Mike Schwarz
I'd rather do something and make a mistake than be frightened into doing nothing. That's the problem back home. Folks have been conned into thinking they can't change the world. Have to accept what is. I'll tell you something, my friends, the world is changing every day. The only question is, who's doing it? (Reverend Will Dexter)



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vw1956 Featured By Owner 7 hours ago  Hobbyist Photographer
Herzlichen Dank, Mike :D
Phsydem Featured By Owner 19 hours ago  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
joaodps Featured By Owner 4 days ago
you're welcome!
Thahaseen Featured By Owner 4 days ago  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
WELCOME TO MagicalMinds! :)
mIkeschwaRz Featured By Owner 4 days ago
TheVisualStorm Featured By Owner 5 days ago  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Lovely gallery!
mIkeschwaRz Featured By Owner 4 days ago
The-Egg Featured By Owner 5 days ago featured! :D
mIkeschwaRz Featured By Owner 4 days ago
The-Egg Featured By Owner 4 days ago
no worries, great photos :)
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