Image by Greg Westfall, used under Creative Commons licence (commercial use)

Infrared photography is one of those things people either love or hate, but there’s no doubt that it shows you the world in an entirely new way. If you think of the rainbow as the spectrum of visible light, infrared rays are found beyond the red end and are invisible to the eye. Digital camera sensors can pick up this wavelength and record it, and this is what’s happening when you shoot in infrared. More accurately, you’re shooting in ‘near-infrared’ – ‘far-infrared’ refers to the wavelengths used for thermal imaging – but in practice it’s usually shortened to just ‘infrared’.

Anything that reflects a lot of infrared rays – like leaves and foliage – will come out white in your shot, while things that don’t reflect much – like the sky – will look dark or black. This leads to surreal shots that often look like something out of a fairytale, or as if there’s been a heavy fall of snow.

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