10 Tips for Infrared Film Photography

The Infra-red photography book was impulse buy. It proved more interesting than the original book I wanted to get in the first place. That how this story begins.

Infrared photography can dramatically alter the way certain elements appear in your images. Vegetation, for example, reflects a lot of infrared light, making it appear bright white. Water and skies, on the other hand, can appear dark and dramatic. Understanding these differences will help you compose striking infrared images.

Firing off, straight onto the second hand website to search for a suitable Infrared filters. Without much effort one was found and purchased with shipping and delivered the next day for just over 10 Euro – not bad if I say so myself!

Along with some Rollei 400 ASA Infrared 120 film I was all set for another adventure with my faithful Bronica medium format camera. The ETRSi model which I’ve often talked about and has featured in my YouTube channel many a time.

The thing is, this IR720 filter is so opaque that not so much if any light comes through. I reckon you need to adjust the exposure about +4 stops to a get a result. Well that the plan!

10 Tips for Infrared Photography

  1. Buy 720nm glass filter as this will work with film, digital and mobile phone cameras.
  2. Use a mobile phone by holding the filter over the camera to discover how your scene will look.
  3. Stop down approx by 2 -3 stops of light is required.
  4. Go to to the parks, forests and castle ruins. Search out those leafy greens!
  5. Use on bright sunny days after midday and early afternoon.
  6. Infrared film can be used as normal B&W film when you don’t use the filter.
  7. Infrared film is inexpensive and readily available from Ilford, Rollei, JCH and ADOX
  8. Use in combination with the Lith Process, which I’ll covered in an upcoming video
  9. Make eery portraits and amazing ethereal landscapes!
  10. Because of the slow speed use a tripod and cable release.
  11. Meter for 25 ASA when using 400 ASA film.


This video/article, I’m going to give you 10 top tips and you get to see the results too. I’ll cover both film photography, digital and using your mobile phone to do infrared.  Basically you can use any camera you wish! mostly!

It is for everyone who wishes to discover a new type of photography regardless of their expertise or even what kind of camera you  have.

Infrared photography captures light beyond what the human eye can see. It can transform an ordinary scene into surreal landscapes filled with ethereal beauty. To help you master the art of infrared photography, I’ve compiled ten top tips which you get you on your way to create stunning infrared images – well I hope.

It’s super easy and costs very little but the results will amaze you. So let’s get started.

The first roll under came out with spots on it, not sure why. The second roll which was new didn’t seem to have any problem.
IR film tends to go off quicker than normal B&W film, so add a stop for expired IR film.

Buy 720nm Glass filter

For film photography choose a film which is responsive to Infrared light.

Buy an IR 720nm filter https://amzn.to/45Sw5Pr

Infrared Film that’s still available

Use a mobile Phone

Hold the filter to the back of  your mobile phone’s camera. This will give you an idea what the composition and how the tones of the foliage will turn out. Of course you can even record video too, you need to convert to B&W and maybe add some contrast.


Development recipe

Rodinal 1:50, 12-13mins,  first 30 seconds agitate and then every 30 seconds gentle inversion. Develop at 20 ºC degree.  Wash between developer and fixer. Fix for 4 mins and 1 mins wetting agent. Wash for 10 mins and then hang to dry over night.




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