June 11, 2005

Gray's Island

After several hours of photography Genevieve, Tom and Kayla at Cape Enrage, we wrapped up the session and headed back to Moncton. On the way, however, we took a detour to Gray's Island, a small tree-enshrouded hillock beside the Peticodiac River, about 25km south of Moncton. In the centre of this former island is a graveyard, including one of the best known graves in the area, the "haunted" grave of Miss Steeves. This is one of the few graves I have ever seen in the Maritimes with a statue of the deceased on it.
Digital infrared original
The infrared modified Nikon D70 worked well in the graveyard, giving the images of the graves a eerie, dramatic look that suited the subject matter. I was a little disappointed in the performance of the 12-24mm Nikkor lens, as the images were a little soft in the corners (this ends up to be a side-effect of the infrared conversion, not a problem with the lens), but the camera performed exactly as I had hoped it would, giving very similar results to what Kodak's HIE would have produced.
Digital infrared original

The final composition of the day came further along on the drive back to Moncton, when we passed some flowering fruit trees by the road. I was unsure how the blossoms would render on the infrared sensory, so I nipped out of the car and made several different exposures of the tree. By this point the morning's clear blue sky had developed a number of high, wispy clouds that provided a wonderful background to the white drama of the tree.
Digital infrared original
On the whole, the day was wonderful start to an exploration of a new tool. In addition to making some very strong new images, I learned much about my new camera and have moved closer to being able to fully anticipate how the results from the small LCD screen on the back of the camera will translate into the final image, which is a huge advantage over the more traditional infrared approach of using expensive film and bracketing the exposures to try to insure a quality image.

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