Chineese Garden - Infrared / Jardin de Chine - Infrarouge by Steve Troletti
Chinese Garden – Infrared / Jardin de Chine – Infrarouge by Steve Troletti

This infrared picture was taken at the Montreal Botanical Garden’s Chinese Garden. It was taken with a Nikon D60 equipped with it’s kit lens the $125 Nikkor 18-55 VR. This low end little wide angle zoom provides remarkable performance when working in IR as it has absolutely no IR HOTSPOT. When used intelligently, while understanding the limitations of this lens, it can provide extremely sharp and clear results.

I used to work with the Cokin P007 IR Filter for infrared work. The Cokin P-Series is quite versatile in IR work as it is easy to remove quickly to make the appropriate setup. Unfortunately the low optical performance of this filter and light bleeding through the assembly forced me to migrate to the Hoya (R72) 720nm screw-on filter. The Hoya R72 Infrared Filter coupled with the D60 allows me to capture great false color IR photos. In longer exposures I can reduce the amount of visible light getting to the sensor and increase contrasts by coupling my R72 with a Hoya Circular Polarizing filter. This allows me to get more of a typical IR look and with the correct white balance obtain white vegetation instead of the typical yellow / reddish tones obtained on a non converted camera when using only a 720nm Filter.

This particular photo was taken with  a NIKON D60 – Nikkor 18-55 VR – Hoya (R72) 720NM – Hoya Circular-Polarizer (30 Second Exposure @ f8 – ISO 400) The Nikon D60 allows for quick and simple IR specific White Balance and the Hotfilter is not too aggressive when it comes to filtering IR light. Although I usually develop my RAW images in Nikon NX2 this one was processed in Photoshop’s Raw converter with a custom DNG profile for the D60 IR. The Blue and Red Channels were reversed and the Hue and White Balance fine tuned to get the false IR color look I was looking for.

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