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Photographer Julian sees red, sees red…sees infra-red

Jul 8th, 2011 | By | Category: Arts/Entertainment, Featured Article

UNIQUE VIEW: One of the photographs Julian Butler is donating to the art auction. IMAGE: Julian Butler

AS the famous Split Enz song goes, Julian Butler sees red, sees red, sees red – but it’s red with a difference.

Julian’s red has “infra” in front of it, and describes the special electromagnetic radiation technique he uses for his photography.

He even made himself a set of infrared goggles and probably startled people on a beach in Fiji recently when he stumbled around in them.

GOGGLE EYED: Julian Butler in his infrared goggles. IMAGE: Lonnie Kraatz

Two of his infrared photographs will be in Island Bay School’s Work of Heart art auction today and tomorrow, with a percentage of the bid going to the school.

“The goggles make the sky turn black,” he says.

“It’s definitely one of the lesser-explored realms of photography and I’ve taken it in a direction that no one else seems to have,” he says of both his goggles and the colours he uses.

The few digital photographers who use infrared tend to shoot in black and white or tone it brown, but Julian’s passion for colour is evident.

He was turned onto infrared by a Weta colleague, where he is finishing work on apes for Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

He is working on the physiology of creatures on a computer, creating their muscles and skin.

He was inspired to start exploring photography after the birth of his son, Jamie, who attends Island Bay Primary School.
 
He says the school is unique in that it has a full time art teacher and brings in an artist-in-residence, which the biennial art auction funds.

The auction is so popular – the last one raising $12,000 – the school has had to extend it to two days.

This year they are introducing a cocktail function at Blackmore Jean Gallery in Shelly Bay.

Julian’s two photographs are among 40 artworks donated by South Coast artists and 470 school students.

INFRARED FIJI: One of Julian's images from his trip to Fiji.

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is a Whitireia Journalism graduate working at Presstige Community Newspapers for the Northern Courier and Petone Herald.
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