Turning the world blue

A reader of my blog, like me, has been using specialized IR and color filters and full spectrum cameras to create a false color look with blue trees. She used Canon cameras where, depending on the model, my DB850 and Lee Dirty White combo did not work well. Instead of Dirty White, she used “Loving Amber” and got good results. I recently thought I might as well try that – with my Nikon D600.

The combo is also interesting, but somewhat problematic with Nikons. First, it swallows a lot of light, second, the colors are rather pale and the blue not really strong. In addition, grass is rather mint green instead of bluish. But at least it generates nice bright blues with certain plants. Here’s a comparison. The following two were photographed with DB850 and Loving Amber:

The following was made with DB850 and Dirty White, like the main image above:

Here you can see what the minimal adjustment in the channel mixer does. It takes the magenta touch out of the reds and makes the coloring of the sky less cyan. It hardly changes the blue tones in plants:


Hello, It’s me again. It’s interesting to see how “Loving amber” performs on another camera. I’ve been trying to use it recently but the bright greens of the spring cancels the blue effect on my camera : the trees are very close to grey sometimes and we can feel the greens piercing through at various spots. It’s not that great… It worked with the dark greens of winter though.

Yes, all those filters that produce blue vegetation are a little “tricky” and often only work really well with minimal channel mixer changes. With both DB850 and DB940 options, I often do -50 (red) and +50 (green) on blue. And with 940 plus Medium Amber, the CWB in Photoshop is a problem. It’s often rather low contrast. But if I use in-camera WB, open the image once in Raw Converter, then in PS, and back into Raw Converter to reselect WB, the contrasts are preserved. This is really puzzling to me. I would maybe try a little more with yellow filters. There’s danger there that you’ll get a rather greener sky, but true blue trees. Channel mixer can help here as well. And maybe try all the more obscure filters in the sepia range like Full CTO 0.6 ND…

I may have already asked this: do you do your post-processing in Photoshop or GIMP or what?

Well I actually only work the contrasts in lightroom. Everything that relate to color is left unchanged. I work from the Jpegs with the white balance done in camera and the saturation boosted in the color profile. The colors from the jegs are more articulated than those from the raw files, producing more nuances. Lightroom doesn’t understand the 1000D’s sensor as well as the 1000D itself (it seems logical in a way). The image is a little bit foggy due to the jpeg compression and processing but it gives an interesting look. As you mention constrast is often low, so enhancing it in lightroom is systematic. That’s were the image reaveals itself.
So that’s my workflow for now but i might get more intrested in softwares soon.

More obscure gels don’t really work for me. It would certainly solve the green leaking problem but at the same times it would kill the color variations that are the indentity of both our styles of color IR.

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