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40 Incredible Near-Infrared Photos

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One of the most charming contrasting color effects you can get in photography is by using infrared. An easy way to understand near-infrared light is to think of it as the color of the rainbow next to red, a color that is invisible to the human eye. But near-infrared is not the same as thermal imaging.

Because everyday objects reflect infrared in proportions that differ sharply from that of visible light, the tonal relationships are wildly unexpected. Such near-infrared techniques used in photography give subjects an exotic, antique look. Green vegetation becomes white, whereas human skin becomes pale and ghostly. The resulting images look alien.

Digital cameras use CCD and other similar sensors to capture infrared images. Although all digital cameras available on the market are sensitive to infrared light, they are equipped with infrared-blocking filters. The main reason for this is that consumer cameras are designed to capture visible light. But sometimes these filters are used together, giving very interesting in-camera effects like false color, wood effects etc.

To start with infrared photography, all you need to have is

  1. A digital camera that is sensitive to infrared light.
  2. A visible-light blocking filter (e.g. a Wratten 89B filter)
  3. Image-editing software, such as Photoshop.

Near-infrared images straight out of the camera do not always look good and are usually not as dramatic and beautiful as normally captured images. Hence, a lot of post-processing is done to enhance these images. Some techniques used in post-processing are equalization, focus shift, small aperture, light leaks, digital false color, halo, etc.

Below, we present a selection of over 40 beautiful infrared images. Some of these images have undergone heavy post-processing, and all of these examples display the names of the photographers, along with links to their websites.

Also take a look at our previous photography articles:

The Beauty Of Infrared Photography Link

Mark Grealish6

Infrared Photo7

Omar Junior8

Infrared Photo9

NASA10
“The Sombrero Galaxy in Infrared”.

Infrared Photo11

Jernej Verbovsek12

Infrared Photo13

G2-Studio Photography

Infrared Photo

Orange Bread14

Infrared Photo15

Naomi Frost5516

Infrared Photo17

Corrado Borean18

Infrared Photo19

Daniella T20

Infrared Photo21

Cavagna Ottavio22

Infrared Photo23

Bruna Marchioro

Infrared Photo24

Infrared Photo

NASA
“Huge Hi-Res Photo of ‘Infrared Andromeda’ with 1 trillion stars”

Infrared Photo25

Roie Galitz
This photo is titled “The Fisherman”.

Infrared Photo

the dreaming tree26

Infrared Photo27

Steve Castle28

Infrared Photo29

Musin Yohan30

Infrared Photo31

18mm32

Infrared Photo33

Almazroa34

Infrared Photo35

NASA36
“An infrared image of Saturn’s northern region shows a luminous aurora with the planet’s mottled rings below.”

Infrared Photo37

Daniella T.38

Infrared Photo39

Frank Brauner40

Infrared Photo41

Infrared Photo42

Guto43

Infrared Photo44

Infrared-IR45

Infrared Photo46

Scott Pruett47

Infrared Photo48

Otit49

Infrared Photo

Infrared Photo50

Gilad51

Infrared Photo52

Romulo Lubachesky

Infrared Photo

Infrared Photo

Infrared Photo

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Licht

Infrared Photo

Infrared Photo

Dave Deluria53

Infrared Photo54

Last Click Link

Naomi Frost5516

Infrared Photo56

ec808x57

Infrared Photo58

Trazy59

Infrared Photo60

Sources and Resources Link

(al)

Footnotes Link

  1. 1 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/03/10/35-fantastic-hdr-pictures/
  2. 2 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/09/07/35-brilliant-examples-of-rain-photography/
  3. 3 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/08/24/45-beautiful-motion-blur-photos/
  4. 4 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/06/09/beautiful-black-and-white-photography/
  5. 5 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/05/celebration-of-smoke-photography-and-smoke-art/
  6. 6 http://flickr.com/photos/bhalash/
  7. 7 http://flickr.com/photos/bhalash/189694607/
  8. 8 http://www.flickr.com/photos/omarjunior/
  9. 9 http://www.flickr.com/photos/omarjunior/2553156883/
  10. 10 http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap070121.html
  11. 11 http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/image/0701/sombrero_spitzer_big.jpg
  12. 12 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=1892294
  13. 13 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=1892294
  14. 14 http://www.flickr.com/photos/orangebread/
  15. 15 http://www.flickr.com/photos/orangebread/246328969/
  16. 16 http://www.flickr.com/photos/naomifrost/sets/72157603769539292/
  17. 17 http://www.flickr.com/photos/naomifrost/2897022022/in/set-72157603769539292/
  18. 18 http://photo.net/photodb/user?user_id=241687
  19. 19 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=6346226
  20. 20 http://www.pbase.com/zylen/profile
  21. 21 http://www.pbase.com/zylen/profile
  22. 22 http://photo.net/photodb/user?user_id=1176523
  23. 23 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=3070940&size=lg
  24. 24 http://www.rbfotografia.com.br/Bruna/natureza/content/B6_large.html
  25. 25 http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0606/m31-irac_f.jpg
  26. 26 http://flickr.com/people/the-dreaming-tree/
  27. 27 http://flickr.com/photos/the-dreaming-tree/2896316967/
  28. 28 http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevecastle/
  29. 29 http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevecastle/2562171530/
  30. 30 http://photo.net/photodb/user?user_id=3526551
  31. 31 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=6711486
  32. 32 http://flickr.com/photos/cwilliamson/sets/343973/
  33. 33 http://flickr.com/photos/cwilliamson/53668834/
  34. 34 http://flickr.com/photos/almazroa/
  35. 35 http://flickr.com/photos/almazroa/2779576634/
  36. 36 http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081112142129.htm
  37. 37 http://io9.com/5086683/mysterious-infrared-aurora-glows-at-saturns-north-pole
  38. 38 http://www.pbase.com/zylen/image/11519979
  39. 39 http://www.pbase.com/zylen/image/11519979
  40. 40 http://www.flickr.com/photos/28i/2503383212/
  41. 41 http://www.flickr.com/photos/28i/2455728561/in/set-72157604825966973/
  42. 42 http://www.flickr.com/photos/28i/2822623680/in/set-72157604825966973/
  43. 43 http://www.flickr.com/photos/ghuto/
  44. 44 http://www.flickr.com/photos/ghuto/341989181/
  45. 45 http://www.flickr.com/photos/b-thomas/
  46. 46 http://www.flickr.com/photos/b-thomas/514873534/in/set-72157600234328627/
  47. 47 http://photo.net/photodb/user?user_id=407170
  48. 48 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=2413733
  49. 49 http://flickr.com/photos/88251752@N00/
  50. 50 http://flickr.com/photos/88251752@N00/1072350692/
  51. 51 http://gilad.deviantart.com/
  52. 52 http://gilad.deviantart.com/art/Final-Destination-54532212
  53. 53 http://www.flickr.com/people/davedeluria/
  54. 54 http://www.flickr.com/photos/davedeluria/342420896/
  55. 55 http://www.flickr.com/photos/naomifrost/sets/72157603769539292/
  56. 56 http://www.flickr.com/photos/naomifrost/2214099490/in/set-72157603769539292/
  57. 57 http://www.flickr.com/people/static808/
  58. 58 http://www.flickr.com/photos/static808/202562458/in/set-72057594133922787/
  59. 59 http://www.flickr.com/photos/artsyscience/sets/1115298/
  60. 60 http://www.flickr.com/photos/artsyscience/154130385/
  61. 61 http://www.flickr.com/groups/11964211@N00/pool/
  62. 62 http://www.photoshopessentials.com/photo-effects/infrared-photo/
  63. 63 http://flickr.com/groups/infrared-landscapes/
  64. 64 http://www.flickr.com/photos/b-thomas/sets/72157600234328627/detail/
  65. 65 http://flickr.com/groups/55027594@N00/
  66. 66 http://weburbanist.com/2008/10/30/7-colorful-creative-infrared-and-hdr-photographers-and-photography/
  67. 67 http://irbuzz.blogspot.com/
  68. 68 #
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Vailancio Rodrigues is a web ninja who bakes semantic muffins. Apart from that he is also interested in Motion Graphics, Visual Effects, Photography and knows little bit of Physics due to his college education . He is from Goa - a beautiful tropical paradise in India.

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  1. 1

    Just beautiful! Its a cool technique and tons of fun to look at. Good stuff!

    ~Jason

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  2. 2

    These look great! Love the shots. Thanks for the collection!

    0
  3. 3

    cant believe this is all done without ps. i love the pic from danielle with the wolf on the right. sm you inspired me today, thank you

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  4. 4

    Bryce Driesenga

    January 11, 2009 9:43 pm

    Nice collection.

    @Tom – Not all is done without Photoshop, though, some are, and photos can turn out very nice without it.

    0
  5. 5

    (((~_~))) | Rishee

    January 11, 2009 10:16 pm

    WOw!……..gr8 Collections……..Loved all :-)

    0
  6. 6

    Excellent, try this similar one on LONG EXPOSURES:

    20 Long Exposure photographs that won’t fail to inspire

    Thanks all, love the site

    0
  7. 7

    Some of those are pretty nice shots. Thanx for the collection.

    0
  8. 8

    Wowwwwwww

    0
  9. 9

    AMAZING!

    0
  10. 10

    good sharing

    1
  11. 11

    Wow, that´s a good day start!!!!

    0
  12. 12

    Amazing Collection Vailancio… Thanks for sharing :)

    0
  13. 13

    As a web desiger with a passion for photography I love SM’s occasional dip into the imaging world – great stuff, and thank you!

    0
  14. 14

    Really nice shots….

    Might have to haev a play and see if I can get anything as interesting and individual as these. Great article SM.

    0
  15. 15

    amazing!

    0
  16. 16

    Just beautiful! Those people sure put some work in it.

    Michael
    Menedżer

    0
  17. 17

    I love the last photo. (trazy)

    0
  18. 18

    So great post , Really Sweeties Pictures Smashing Magazine , Thanks , love it

    0
  19. 19

    It’s a pity you only include one B&W pictures. Many times the results are far better than color infrared.

    0
  20. 20

    Thats a great collection, I love the image by Corrado Borean, it’s looks like an amazing place too! Thanks SM!

    0
  21. 21

    Good selection of pictures. Thanks!

    0
  22. 22

    Awesome – awesome – awesome!

    Thanks!

    0
  23. 23

    Great!

    0
  24. 24

    I’ve seen ‘Gilad’s work before, though I never fully understood how this technique worked.

    0
  25. 25

    Some very nice pictures in here, I’d love to try that technique out myself… It’s a shame these filters are so expensive.

    Anyway, I still have to mention that I think some of these pictures are ONLY done with post-processing and don’t have anything to do with actually using IR filters. For example: the works of Jernej Verbovsek, G2-Studio Photography or Corrado Borean dont really seem like IR-fotography. Cause first of all, using a IR-filter you need a way longer time of exposure than for a normal photo to allow enough infrared light to get through. Thus it might be difficult to take a picture that captures any moving subjects (like a duck, a waving surface of water, people…) Secondly, leaves and grass reflect infrared light almost to 100%, which is how this great effect of white trees in front of dark skies is created. So anything with dark leaves or forcibly short exposure time might just be a photoshop fake. Not that I’d think of that as bad… I’ve tried that myself, and you get pretty good results for less money. I’m just mentioning this for general enlightenment.;)
    (Of course there are filters that don’t strictly filter out every light wave frequency except IR, and you could get “in between” results with them, but i guess what’s been done here is really just photoshopping of normal pictures.)

    BTW: For anyone who wants to try out IR-photography: Before running to your local photoequipment dealer, make sure that your camera is actually IR sensitive (because this varies considerably among normal digital cameras). This can easily be done by taking a long-time-exposure photo of a IR remote device (like most standard tv remote devices) in a dark room while constantly pressing a button on the device. If you see the little IR bulb glow on the photo, you’re free to run off to the photo shop…;)

    0
  26. 26

    @Bryce Driesenga so, i need a tutorial for those effects or something to read – for understanding techniques and maybe used plugins. but great pics

    0
  27. 27

    @shasta The IR filters aren’t that expensive if you get them from ebay. I was lucky enough to get mine for about $35 (Hoya R72)

    0
  28. 28

    Those are beautiful. All I can say is WOW!

    0
  29. 29

    magnifique !

    0
  30. 30

    wow perfect photos :O

    0
  31. 31

    Beautiful…

    0
  32. 32

    wow … nice photos !!! O_O

    0
  33. 33

    Plenty of nice images but i doubt half of them were actually shot like they are shown here. I.e. with IR light and using blocking filters for other wavelengths. The rest is Photoshop and other tools at work. So please don’t call it photography when it isn’t. Also I suppose a number of the photos are from stock image libraries and or combinations with these.

    0
    • 34

      Just because a photo has been photo-shopped does not mean that it isn’t photography. If they took the pic with a camera- that makes it clear enough for me what it is. Are you going to say that a cropped photo isn’t photography? It sounds clear that you are just hatin’ on some of the most beautiful pics I have ever seen. Some people are just more creative with the resources available. You should try it.

      0
  34. 35

    Wow arent we full of new year cheer. Relax man and enjoy some lovely “imagery” regardless of how it came to be.

    0
  35. 36

    @shasta – you can have normal exposure time if you modify your DSLR camera. All you have to do is to remove an IR filter from the sensor. This filter filters out the infrared light spectrum and this is the reason of very long exposure time.

    1
  36. 37

    Awesome!!!!!

    Specially

    Daniella T, Cavagna Ottavio, Bruna Marchioro, Frank Brauner, Giladm, Romulo Lubachesky

    0
  37. 38

    I’m totally stunned. Haven’t thought it could be soooo beautiful!!!

    0
  38. 39

    I think Stuart is right!!! Enjoy PICS

    0
  39. 40

    amazing!

    Where is that triangle, UFO spaceship thing located?
    http://88.198.60.17/images/infrared-photography/irr.jpg

    It reminds me of the logo of this company http://www.spafu.nl/

    Does it have any symbolic meaning?

    0
  40. 41

    Great! *__________*

    Brokendollie.com

    0

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