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April 6, 2011

National Parks: Joshua Tree in the Infrared

As a rule there’s a story, sometimes a long and protracted story, that goes with the block of images posted on Anotherheader.  Admittedly there are times when the verbiage’s prime function is as the glue to hold the digital pictures on the web page.  For this entry, there’ll be little digital alphabet adhesive.  The pictures are the story.  They will have to stick to the web page with little assistance.

There’s something about the combination of color infrared photography and the foliage of Joshua Tree National Park.  Not that I knew this before visiting the park.  Indeed, Joshua Tree was my first real effort at trying out a color infrared modified Nikon D90.  I did not know what to expect when I downloaded the pictures and adjusted the color balance.  When the images appeared on the laptop screen, I was amazed.  Perhaps you will be too.

It’s easy enough to view IR photography in the same spirit as computational post processing.  If you tweak things enough in Photoshop, you can get some striking results.  But IR photography is not the same thing as electronic image massage.  All around you photons in the infrared spectrum abound.  Human eyes simply have not evolved to sense the light in these frequencies.  Further, camera manufacturers configure their cameras so the abundant infrared light doesn’t muddle pictures destined for viewing by the human eye.

In the end though, the result of infrared camera work is the same as in all photography; it is the subject that dazzles.  Details and textures in the natural world can emerge more definitely in the infrared.  An IR modified camera sometimes emphasizes elements that human eyes overlook.  Imagine if our vision extended into the infrared.  The world might just be that much more intriguing.

For even more twisted pictures of Joshua Tree National Park check out Picasa.


  1. Very Dr. Suess-like! How’s Gigi doing?????

    Comment by Betsy — April 6, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

  2. Almost sci-fi like!!!

    Comment by Gail — April 7, 2011 @ 4:37 am

  3. […] Joshua Tree (2011) […]

    Pingback by The List « Another Header — July 22, 2011 @ 9:15 pm

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