ORB's and Digital Photography
There is much debate and controversy as to whether "orbs" in photos are spiritual/ghosts, dust, moisture or insects.
On one side of the debate, "Sceptics" are saying the orb is a reflection/ refraction of light caused by the flash being too close to the lens on modern digital cameras.
Sceptics will also argue that dust, moisture, rain and dirt on the lens can cause the orb effect - with simple testing, this argument is quite correct.
Aiding the Sceptical debate is the fact some camera companies are now offering cameras that cannot take orb photos by adjusting the lens to flash ratio.
On the other side we have the "Believers". Believers will tell you that orbs can be caught on camera without a flash, that many have seen the orb with their own eyes as it floats by and then taken a photo.
They will point to evidence of older film cameras and video cameras, that have no flash, recording orb photos.
It is also widely believed that the "spherical" shape, or orb is the most economical shape for energy to travel, and, as we are all energy, in one form or another, wouldn't it be easiest to appear as an orb?
In my experience, spirits in spherical form do exist, after seeing a fully formed apparition, and taking a photo, the apparition in the photo appeared as an orb (I also know of another Paranormal Investigator locally that had had the same experience in the same cemetery!). Also, myself, and other team members have witnessed orbs with our own eyes in cemeteries and houses. They appeared to emit their own light and pulse at the same time, moving through the air much like a jelly-fish moves through water.
Even though I do believe the orb is the easiest form for a spirit to travel, I do still believe that the majority of "orb" photos out there are contaminants from the local environment where the picture has been taken, with insects and dust being the most common causes.
I suggest looking at your environment, taking notes of wind strength, dust, insects and anything that can cause loud vibrations (such as a band in a hall), moisture, rain etc. and if you cannot control these conditions when getting your orb photo, then you can probably discard it as a contaminant and not a spirit...
I also suggest testing your camera in controlled condition, say, inside your own house, put the camera on a tripod and throw some powder, or dust into the air while taking a flash photo just to see how the "orbs" will look in your photo. This will also give you some idea of how the flash, lens ratio works - We at Eidolon Paranormal have done our own experiments with dust, and other objects to see for ourselves that the majority of photos out there are dust or other contaminates - Allen Tiller
This photo was taken in a pub in Kapunda South Australia.
It was an effort getting a photo of a moth as it fluttered around the pool table lights...eventually I got the photo as it flew in front of a team mates jacket - and low and behold, an orb!
The Picture below has been produced by a team in the USA named. "Midnite Walkers". Midnight Walkers went to extensive lengths to take photographs of various insects in their local region and explain how insects and incorrect camera use, or settings, can cause various shapes, or patterns that some teams, or investigators will claim to be spirits, or Angels
We would like to thank MidNite Walkers for granting Eidolon Paranormal the use of their pictures on our website.
For more on this fantastic team, please visit the link at the bottom of the page.
Composite picture showing the typical irregular shape and high brilliancy of insect orbs. Image sizes have been scaled to a similar size for easer comparison of shape and brightness.
Composite picture showing the typical image overexposure associated with insect orbs. Originals are to the left, pictures showing overexposure are to the right. Slight overexposure shows up as coloured regions. Black central regions show heavy overexposure.
What is an orb?
Wikipedia defines it as :
The term orb describes unexpected, typically circular artefacts that occur in flash photography — sometimes with trails indicating motion — especially common with modern compact and ultra-compact digital cameras.
Orbs are also sometimes called backscatter, orb backscatter, or near-camera reflection.
This photo was taken in a cemetery by the Eidolon Paranormal team in 2009
The ground had ash on it from a recent fire and it was beginning to rain lightly. After walking through the ash pile, kicking up dust we took the photo. Notice the red dust/red orb, the ash dust appears white/grey and blue - the rain drop appears bluish-grey and has the most density
Midnite Walkers have also granted us permission to use their conglomeration ORB photos as a reference tool for our readers, and future paranormal investigators
Composite image of white and grey dust orbs (Image sizes
have been scaled to a similar size for easer comparison)
Composite image of coloured dust orbs (Image sizes have been scaled to a similar size for easer comparison)
Eidolon Paranormal also conducted some experiments within controlled conditions (as mentioned earlier on this page) here a few of our "controlled orb experiment" photos
The "ORBS" in this photo are actually white sugar
The "ORBS" in this photo are actually hot drinking chocolate powder
The "ORBS" in this photo are caused by the spray from aerosol can
A few of you may be wondering why we chose these, and other house hold items, it was purely because they were controllable with differing mass, liquidity, and weight, and all would react in differing ways within the field off the camera flash
Random Orb shots taken by Eidolon Paranormal
Insects, rain, dust, light refractions....or spirits?
This photo is taken in Infra-red night vision on a standard wild-game camera. We have no explanation at this point as to why the "arrow" shape appears on the top of the ORB
This "ORB" is from a photo taken at St Johns Cemetery.
This "orb" has a peculiar shape, we believe it to be an insect moving at high velocity from left to right of shot
Eidolon Paranormal would like to express out deepest appreciation to
"Midnite Walkers Paranormal Research Society"
based in Minnesota, United States of America, for allowing us the use of their photos and text.
If you would like to see the above experiments, in full, or other experiments performed by Midnite Walkers, please follow the link below to their website