Friday Image No.54

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Canon G16 - 4 image stitch in Lightroom 6.
Canon G16 – 4 image stitch in Lightroom 6. Processing in Nik Silver Efex.

For this week’s image I thought I would share a Panoramic. This was captured as four images using a Canon G16 compact camera. The resulting stitched image is approximately 21″ x 12″ at 300dpi. The stitching was done using the new Lightroom 6 (Creative Cloud 2015). All I can say is that I’m now addicted to panoramic photography. Lightroom makes it so easy to group and work with images and the resulting file is in DNG format giving lots of flexibility.

I’m very impressed.

 

Don’t do this if you shoot film

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Rollei IR400 film rated at ISO 6 and developed in Rodinal 1:100. Hasselblad XPan + 30mm lens.
Rollei IR400 film rated at ISO 6 and developed in Rodinal 1:100. Hasselblad XPan + 30mm lens.

A couple of weeks back I had a clear out in my study. I have shelves full of books and decided to throw out many of the older ones. I also have stacks of old note books full of random jottings so I pulled out and ripped up all the used pages. It wasn’t until I came to develop some Infrared film from my trip to Malham that I realised I had ripped up all my developing notes – gulp.

This was not a good feeling but as they say, every cloud has a silver lining. In this case I found mine on the Massive Dev Chart website (http://www.digitaltruth.com/devchart.php).

If you have never used this site it’s a great resource to find out development times for different film and developer combinations. But the real bonus for me was that they now have an App. Whilst I had to buy the paid version in order to record my development notes it’s a really great little app.

If you haven’t seen this before and you still use film, it’s well worth checking out.

Interesting Infrared Process

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Olympus EM5 Infrared with processing in Exposure 7 and Nik Color Efex Pro
Olympus EM5 Infrared with processing in Exposure 7 and Nik Color Efex Pro

I have been experimenting with the image from my new Infrared camera and identified a rather interesting look that can be achieved in Nik Color Efex Pro.

You can see the finished image above and shown below is the starting image following RAW conversion and white balance correction in Lightroom.

 

Starting Image
Starting Image

The next image shows the conversion to infrared black and white using Alien Skin Exposure 7. This is one of my favourite tools for Infrared processing as it includes sliders that allow you to control the halation effect (bright glowing areas).

 

Processed in Alien Skin Exposure 7
Processed in Alien Skin Exposure 7

The conversion from this image to the finished image was achieved using a few contrast adjustments in Nik Color Efex but the toning was achieved using the Glamour Glow filter. You can see the filter settings below.

 

Filter settings in Color Efex
Filter settings in Color Efex

I really quite like this effect as the halation glow is further enhanced and the toning can be controlled quite precisely moving from warm to cool.

In case you’re wondering how I got rid of the sun flare, I moved the Cyan slider to 0 in the black and white conversion process.

Friday Image No.53

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EM5 Infrared camera, Olympus 12-40mm lens. 2 image stitch with post production processing in Photoshop, Alien Skin Exposure 7 and Nik Silver Efex.
EM5 Infrared camera, Olympus 12-40mm lens. 2 image stitch with post production processing in Photoshop, Alien Skin Exposure 7 and Nik Silver Efex.

As you may be able to tell, the new EM5 Infrared conversion I had done by ProTech has really taken hold of my enthusiasm. As the days start to draw out and the sun becomes harsher it’s perfect for Infrared. If your love is landscape photography and you find the summer months a frustration, one of the best investments you can make is to have a camera converted.

This is a ridge above Gordale Scar in Yorkshire, England. It’s a two image stitch and the EM5 has performed wonderfully.

Have a great weekend everyone.

An Infrared Day

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Olympus EM5 Converted to Infrared with processing with Lightroom and Alien Skin Exposure 7.
Olympus EM5 Converted to Infrared with processing with Lightroom and Alien Skin Exposure 7.

As planned (and mentioned in my Friday post) I visited Malham in Yorkshire at the weekend. The weather conditions were forecast to be sunny with broken cloud so the intention was to shoot Infrared. I actually intended to shoot mainly infrared film on the XPan using my new 30mm lens. In the end I found myself shooting more with the newly converted infrared EM5. By the end of the day I was convinced the EM5 conversion was a great idea but I still had some reservations about processing the RAW images.

When I returned from my previous trip and first outing of the EM5, I found problems in trying to process the RAW files. For some reason I couldn’t achieve a good white balance with the RAW files in Lightroom. As usual they all came out blood red. You can normally overcome this by creating a bespoke profile using the Adobe DNG editor but for some reason I still can’t explain, I couldn’t get this to work for me. I even started to wonder if I had made a mistake choosing a 665nm conversion.

This time on my return I tried again to create a new profile and it worked first time. I then tried processing the images. Channel swapping to produce false colours seems much easier with the 665nm converted camera, but that wasn’t my objective. Instead I was trying to create a nice Infrared look that was more akin to the traditional Kodak HIE films but retained better definition. I wanted to create something of a cross between Kodak HIE and Ilford SFX (at least in my vivid imagination).

In the end I came up with a custom preset in Alien Skin Exposure 7 which works pretty well with most of the RAW files once they have been white balanced. I hope you like the results.

Friday Image No.52

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Sony RX10, ISO80, f/5.6, 1/320"
Sony RX10, ISO80, f/5.6, 1/320″

This is another image shot last weekend at Gordale Scar near to Malham in the Yorkshire Dales. The image is of the side of the Scar before you get to the main scramble. The scar is actually a huge fault line and covered in limestone. If you have never been to this area it’s well worth a visit as the landscape is surreal. In fact I am off there again this weekend.

This image isn’t a pretty one but it does convey some of the harshness of the landscape in the area. It was taken around 11:00 in the morning as the fog was just clearing from the tops of the hillside.

Fingers crossed for some good weather tomorrow.

First XPan 30mm Images

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Gordale Scar, Yorkshire. Xpan 30mm with Kodak TMax400
Gordale Scar, Yorkshire. Xpan 30mm with Kodak TMax400

In addition to trying out my new EM5 Infrared conversion at the weekend I also had the opportunity to take the XPan 30mm lens for a spin. This is a lens that I had lusted after for most of the time I had owned an XPan but it had always seemed out of reach. The XPan went out of production in the early 2000’s and the kit obtained something of a cult following. Some elements, the 30mm lens being one began to sell for silly money. I remember seeing one kit (30mm lens, viewfinder, hood and centre filter) sell for almost £3,000.

Sunday was my first opportunity to try out the lens and I am delighted. It did feel very odd shooting film again (Kodak TMax 400 to be precise). I processed the film on Monday and have just scanned the first image. This is Gordale Scar in Yorkshire and merits some further exploration in film. I need to spend a little more time perfecting my film processing but I do like the look when printed.