Para-Tech-Geek talks Paranormal Photography
Help me Para-Tech-Geek- what are these things I’m seeing in my paranormal investigation photos?
Visual evidence is one of the most desired forms of documented evidence that can be used to validate the presence of ghostly apparitions. It can also be one of the most misunderstood. Most of the questions asked related to photographic evidence tend to focus upon the following four areas:
1. A noisy picture?
Image Noise is the graininess appearance of a photograph and tends to show up as randomly scattered speckles.
Orbs are circular light forms appearing within a captured image. There are many theories their source and nature.
- What is that- it looks like someone’s face?
Matrixing is a phenomenon that occurs when our brain fills in certain details to attempt to provide orderliness to randomness.
- What was that – it looks like it flew by?
Motion blur occurs when the camera used to take a picture moves as the shutter snaps and/or the object being photographed moves.
As paranormal investigators, we are often shown photos taken by folks wanting to know if what they captured in a picture is ghostly or paranormal in nature. Many times the captured image can be validated or simply explained. There are many photographic terms to which paranormal investigators can refer to help explain the image captured in a photo. The following are a snapshot of the terms DGH references and utilizes most often.
You may be asking yourself “how can a picture be noisy?” Image noise is similar to that of white noise heard in audio or video. Image noise is the grainy appearance sometimes seen in photos taken with a digital camera. It can appear as multi-colored specks which show up really well in a dark or shadow area of an image. Image noise can also show up as grainy speckles randomly scattered throughout the image. While image noise can sometimes create a nice photographic effect in the picture it usually unwanted; particularly when the image is enlarged.
Using a flash can prevent such a noise. It is also the most inexpensive way to take clear crisp photos and avoid brighter image noise showing up in a photo taken low lighting area.
Orbs are the most often found and misunderstood photographic phenomenon existing within the paranormal investigative community. It is a commonly used term in photography and the paranormal community that describes the presence of a circular light forms appearing within a captured image. Orbs are a very controversial topic amongst the paranormal community. Some paranormal enthusiasts believe an orb is a spiritual energy form trying to manifest. Other paranormal investigators believe orbs are merely light reflecting from particulate matter in free air. The term orb used in photography is: “artifact captured during the low-light instances where the camera’s flash is used, such as at night or underwater or where a bright light source is near the camera.” These types of artifacts are especially common with compact or ultra compact cameras and cell phones where the short distance between the lens and the built in flash decreases the angle of the light reflection to the lens. Orb artifacts can result from light being reflected from solid particulate matter such as dust, pollen, insects, and water droplets within a camera lens’s field of view.
Matrixing is another popular photography term used by paranormal investigators to describe the human mind’s ability to take random sensory data and rearrange it to an orderly form that is recognizable and most familiar. Matrixing anomalies make us see something that really isn’t there, such as a face peering from a tree, or cloud shapes resembling that of a giraffe.
Motion blur is typically caused by camera movement or object movement while a picture is being taken. Motion blur is not necessarily a bad thing. Creative photographers oftentimes use it to capture falling water, athletic actions, etc. It is practically impossible for a photographer to hold a camera perfectly still without using a tripod.
A photographer’s movement of the camera can contribute to motion blur. A paranormal enthusiast taking a photo at night should set his or her cameras’ setting properly and then listen for the shutter to open and close after depressing the button to take the picture.
|Just because the flash fired does not mean the photo has been taken. Given the slower shutter speeds any movement of the camera before the shutter closes will cause shadows and blurring of the photo.|
It never should be assumed that just because a picture doesn’t look normal that the paranormal must be the explanation. This usually happens due to hopes of capturing an apparition image and over-scrutinizing a photo. Evidence of paranormal activity should be able to stand on its own and up to the scrutiny of the paranormal community. Remember a camera is not looking for a ghost when you take the photo, it is attempting to adjust automatically to the best possible settings to take the best possible picture in the environment that the photo is being taken.