Monday, August 3, 2020

Why Infrared Film?

My interest in this type of film dates back to the 1980's when I first discovered it. The best film available then was a Kodak product, HIE Infrared. Great film once you got the hang of it since it was quite sensitive to a number of factors like heat, humidity, loading and unloading in absolute darkness, and the brightness of the light falling on your subject. However, with practice you got what you wanted. I always took 2 or 3 exposures of the same image to be sure I had a great workable negative.

Then came along a Konica product, their 750 Infrared. Much easier to use than Kodak's film and would yield negatives as good. Sadly, both films have been discontinued. Now we have Ilford SFX 200 and Rollei Infrared films. Good products but not true infrared films. Kodak and Konica films would work very well with a 25 red filter whereas Ilford and Rollei require an extreme deep red R72 filter, so dark you can't see through. That's why I use the UUrig RFS adapter as explained in my previous blog post. Handy accessory for Infrared photography. When printing the new negatives I use a 3 1/2 contrast filter to increase the blacks vs whites in the final print.

I just like the deep blacks and twilight zone whites only available with Infrared film.

The print below, "Sugar Shack" from the Infrared Scenes of my website, was captured using my last roll of Konica 750. Other images were done with Ilford SFX 200; I'm starting to work with the Rollei Infrared to compare the finished print with my results from Ilford. 

Some of my customers really like the infrared look for their home decor because it does make an entirely different presentation as opposed to standard B&W. They claim the infrared is eye catching on their walls. 

Do any of you use infrared film in your photo portfolios?


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