Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2008/07/31

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Subject: [Leica] M8 Ultra Violet photography
From: freakscene at (Marty Deveney)
Date: Thu Jul 31 19:04:36 2008

>I've seen breathtaking imagery taken with UV and IR photography.
>Should those images be ignored?! I don't get it!

I have seen some great work too and of course great photos done any way 
should not be ignored.  The problem to me is that far too much UV and IR 
work is pedestrian, but touted as 'special' or 'great' just because the 
person has used that specific technique.  Similarly I breathed a sigh of 
relief when Tech Pan was discontinued because there were always some 
students and others who thought their work was special because the used that 

To some extent this is a problem with all photography that uses unusual 
materials.  I have done it myself and made a lot of portriats on hand-coated 
watercolour paper in the late 90s and early 2000s.  It was extremely popular 
and profitable, but I never really liked it.  The bills got paid, however.

>I'd love to be able to do some. I got a very dark dark red IR filter once
>from B+W but never gave it much of a shot. Digital seems like the way to fly
>for this stuff.

Absolutely.  I've used and processed hundreds of rolls of HIE and EIR for IR 
work and and they were a total pain.  Fuji RTP for UV was easier but still 
problematic.  I even built UV and IR meters and an IR previewing device to 
standardise the process.  Digital means you can make sure you get the shot 
with none of the hassle.  One of our microscopes is even set up so you can 
flick a switch, lower a filter and away you go, UV, IR or flourescence 

I wish there was a modern digital camera with a monochrome sensor so I could 
more easily replicate the highlight rendition of HIE without having to 
resort to HDR techniques.  I wish this often and for a number of reasons.



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