I got into Digital Infrared very early; over tens years ago. I still remember wandering onto this amazing looking image online and going “Whoa, . . . .what is that?” I’ve always loved the look of digital IR and the way it can make almost anything look more interesting.
Up until a year ago, if you were to ask me what Infrared conversion I liked, there was no hesitation, it was Super Color Infrared. In fact, I even put together a Youtube video on the subject.
Properly captured and processed, Super Color offers up so much opportunity to create the look of pretty much all the other types of Infrared.
The reason Super Color has so much to offer is the color tones. In a properly White Balanced RAW file, you have Red & Yellow in the sky, and Blue & Cyan in the foliage. With those four colors, you can go in whatever direction you want. I even wrote a set of simple Photoshop Actions we give away to people getting a new conversion that creates three different looks from a Super Color image.
Yes, Super Color Infrared was exactly what I needed.
Then, . . . . something happened. Hyper Color
Summer of 2017, Life Pixel decided to test a couple of new types of Infrared for possible inclusion into our filter choices. I was asked if I wanted to test them. (Like I was going to say no) So, I started off with 3 filters, and after the first day of shooting 2 filters got voted off the planet and 1 stood out; Hyper Color.
Hyper Color was unlike anything I had worked with. Hyper Color made everything look different from other IR, pretty much like the other types of IR made everything look different from color photography.
It was truly fascinating.
Here was an IR image that didn’t need a channel swap and had all these exciting colors.
And with people, it was equally amazing. Super Color will give you the classic china doll look with the smooth white skin tones, but Hyper Color gives a subject a slight rosy tone to their skin.
So, there’s my problem. Super Color gives me the ability to create the looks of every type of Infrared, except for Hyper Color. Hyper Color is its own unique creature. I tried carrying around another camera, but that got annoying.
Then I found a solution; my perfect conversion.
My perfect conversion is ……. both.
Hyper Color Infrared is 470nm, Super Color is 590nm. You can filter up the nanometer scale, but not down. So my solution was simple.
I converted my New Canon EOS R to Hyper Color and I carry a Super Color filter. I just carry one filter and every lens has a step up ring to accommodate the Super Color filter.
With this, I can get everything by using one camera and carrying one filter.
Now the real fun begins.