I love NIK Color Efex Pro 4! There are so many things you can do with it, it’s easy to use, and the effects are very high quality.
A lot of the presets are very usable, but in the case of the “Infrared Film” filter, the presets were too extreme for most my photos and the look I wanted to see, so I breezed over this feature. Then I finally tried it with a photo and after tweaking the adjustment sliders quite a bit, I found a look that I really liked. It didn’t even look like infrared, but the effect was nice on that particular photo.
Here is an example of a color infrared film simulation on a photo I took last summer.
This is much lower contrast and brightness than the preset. I wanted to retain more detail – rock textures and leaf shapes. It certainly isn’t like the real scene, but somehow it looks more eye catching than the original in a row of photos from this shoot.
Here’s another example:
These photos were taken at Porter Falls in the Capital Forest near Olympia, Washington. For comparison, here’s a more natural version.