Stuff Singapore - - PROJECTS -

Steven Saphore / steven­saphore.com

The first time I saw an infrared pho­to­graph, I re­alised I was peek­ing be­yond the lim­its of hu­man vi­sion.

Places I’ve vis­ited a thou­sand times be­fore sud­denly be­come alien land­scapes wait­ing to be ex­plored.

I’ve con­verted count­less cam­eras to infrared, rang­ing from cheap point-and­shoots to high-end DSLRs. Cam­era man­u­fac­tur­ers place a se­ries of infrared fil­ters over the sen­sor. This is be­cause in­vis­i­ble IR ra­di­a­tion can neg­a­tively af­fect the proper me­ter­ing of vis­i­ble light ex­po­sures. Re­gain­ing a cam­era’s lost IR sen­si­tiv­ity is as sim­ple as us­ing a screw­driver to ex­tract the sen­sor from the cam­era and re­move any IR fil­ters. The en­tire project takes two or three hours and costs no more than $40.

Un­like the long ex­po­sures (10-30 sec­onds) re­quired to take a photo by screw­ing an IR fil­ter over the lens of an un­mod­i­fied cam­era, this ‘thor­ough’ con­ver­sion en­ables to you to freeze a mo­ment in time or record videos in infrared.

The beauty of infrared photography lies in its abil­ity to re­veal cer­tain as­pects of or­gan­isms and ma­te­ri­als that we could never oth­er­wise de­tect. So the usu­ally blue noon­time sky ap­pears as dark as night, and veg­e­ta­tion ap­pears bright white as though cov­ered in snow.

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