Aww, the Look of Aerchrome Infrared. Isn’t it so cool?
That Blue Sky and the cool Red foliage.
It really has such a cool look.
I love the Aerochrome Infrared look, even with people.
I’ve been emulating the look of Aerochrome IR for years. In fact, if you’ve had a camera converted in the past few years and taken advantage of the complimentary 30-minute session we offer, you know I give away a Photoshop Action that helps emulate the look of Aerchrome.
I’ve been out of town on Holiday and was not in touch with what was going on in the world of Infrared. When I returned, I amused to see information about the “New Aerchrome IR”. My first response was “So what’s new??” I wrote a piece a little over two years ago on how to emulate the look of Aerochrome Infrared using a Super Color Image. Now I hear there is a new filter that creates the Aerochrome look. I checked it out and, yes it does, …. but, ……. that’s all it does. Next, someone will bring out single-use memory cards. So, if you want to limit yourself to one type of image, with a limited dynamic range, then that is the way to go. However, if you want more flexibility, then Super Color is still the way to go.
Here’s the example I always use to explain to people why I think Super Color is the most flexible.
From one Super Color image, you can create multiple looks. Why, because you have 4 color tones in a Super Color Image; Red, Yello, Blue, & Cyan. Working those colors you can create, well pretty much anything you’d like. Now, with an Aerchrome only IR image you have, let’s see, … 2 colors, red and blue. It’s gonna be a bit challenging.
Let’s take a minute and create an Aerchrome IR image from a Super Color image. Here’s a simple landscape in Super Color.
Let’s do a Color Channel swap. In Photoshop, We’ll go to Image, Adjustments, Channel Mixer.
Once in the Channel Mixer, we will swap the Red and Blue channels.
Now we have our Super Color Image like this
So, let’s “Go Aerochrome” First, we’ll go to Image, Adjustments, Hue/Saturation.
Let’s get that sky to a bright Blue. A channel swapped Super Color image has 2 color tones in the sky, Blue & Cyan. So, we’re going to convert that Cyan to Blue, by moving the Hue slider slightly to the right.
Now for the Red foliage. A Super Color image has 2 color tones in the foliage, Red & Yellow. So, let’s take the yellow and turn it into a Red by moving the Hue slider this time to the left.
And lookie here, we have an Aerchrome IR image.
Now if the color tones don’t look “Aerchrome-y” enough for you, simply work with the Saturation on each color or go into Image, Adjustments, Selective color, and work with the Red and Blue.
The look is easy and doesn’t require you to get another camera converted.
Don’t feel like doing the work yourself? Here’s the Photoshop Action that does most of the work for you. You will also find there are two other Actions in there you might like.