Could your portraits be enhanced
by the mysterious, otherworldly glow of a black and white infrared (IR) effect?
In the past, pre-digital darkroom, the only way you could get the IR look was
shooting special IR film, quite a challenge to expose, process, and print correctly.
Working digitally you can avoid many of the pitfalls and gain much more control
in the bargain. Here's how to emulate that exotic infrared look digitally:
You can start with a scan of any color slide, print, or negative you've
shot with your film camera or, even easier, with a color file from your digital
camera. If you're starting with a print, negative, or slide, scan it in
RGB color mode. Once you've got the digital file, open it in Adobe Photoshop
CS (or some earlier versions) to follow the steps outlined here. You can also
achieve the effect with Adobe Elements 2 or other advanced image-editing programs,
but the names of some tools or dialog boxes may be slightly different. Always
work on a copy to preserve your original scan. In fact, with this technique,
it is a good idea to make two or three copies in order to try different settings
in search of the effect you like best. Just follow these steps and you'll
be on your way to easy IR.
I began with this original color file shot in Raw mode with a
Canon Digital Rebel 6-megapixel digital SLR with a Canon 18-55mm
lens at 55mm (equivalent to a 90mm lens in 35mm format). File
size: 18MB. (Model: Riley Messina.)