UFO Conjecture(s)

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Where are the UFO photos from Professionals?

We’re still moving books around and sorting them at the new offices:


I came across this book among the hundreds of photography books we have:


It documents photography by the greats who used cameras and picture-taking as their art form – from the early 1840s until the present day.

That’s when it dawned on me that no professional photographer, early on or any time afterward, ever photographed a UFO or artifact that seemed to be a flying disk or saucer and not one ever mentioned in their memoirs or while discussing their oeuvre or archives anything about capturing a strange thing in the sky or on the ground.

Doesn’t that strike you as odd – since amateurs have allegedly captured and continue to capture what their snapshots supposedly show as UFOs or aircraft that is weirdly anomalous?

Wouldn’t you think that a professional photographer, during the 170+ years of photography, would have specifically or inadvertently gotten a shot of a flying disk or UFO?

I’m referring to professionals – not tyros, like Paul Trent, James Templeton, or Ed Waters, et al.

What does this say about the reality of UFOs or, at least, the photos of UFOs?



  • First... that's a terrible looking couch!

    Second (and somewhat more seriously), the question you raise suggests one of two things: (1) that the UFO photos are hoaxes (it's worth remembering by the way that the Trindade photos were taken by a pro), or (2) that if there is a non-human intelligence behind the UFO phenomenon, then it controls when it is seen, and by whom, which might have a lot to do with the story it means to tell.


    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • The Trindade photographer doesn't fall into the category I was referring to Paul.

    I hoped to set my references apart by using the word "greats."

    And that couch! (It was at our old office and we brought it over but our guy Wes just hated that we brought it.)

    It's comfy and was part of our Western motif, but it is just awful.

    Wes is too embarrassed to give it away.

    I suggested it go in our billiard room.

    The green matches the pool table bed.

    I'll pass along your opprobrium to Wes. He'll have a laugh, or a fit.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • Update (for Paul):

    Wes just saw your comment and notifies me that the couch, it's attendant love seat and chair are gone....to the Salvation Army or St, Annes (?)...

    He's our money guy so I guess we're getting new items.

    (And I loved that couch -- for its comfort, not its looks.)


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • A professional photographer usually concentrates on a particular subject, such as baseball, cricket, birds, buildings, the countryside, lovely females, etc.

    I doubt any professional has set out to take pics of UFOs, so anyone who got one would have done so by accident only. I suppose a photographer specialising in aviation would be the best to qualify, but have any such persons, by chance, ever got a UFO picture?

    Real UFOs are still a rarity - big rarity. Do you know of any photographs of ball lightning? I have seen one, somewhere, I think it was the Scientific American, many years ago.

    By Blogger cda, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • Christopher:

    Bob may confirm what I'm about to write; I hope so...

    Real photographers take thousands (or more) photos during their careers, many of the sky or landscapes with sky in them (Ansel Adams for one).

    They snap clouds, birds in flight, and lots of things aerial.

    That none have a photo or even got a glimpse of a UFO is astounding, to me.

    Photographers are the quintessential sighters of things.

    Surely one would think some of them, at least one, would have noted something out of the ordinary.

    They didn't.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • It might mean nothing more than publishing UFO or other anomaly photos would make them appear as something less than serious artistes who care only for the art.

    But really, UFO photos are hoaxes, optical artifacts, and misidentifications by UFO zealots. A pro would never engage in this kind of UFO folderol. It's self defeating.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • PG:

    It has nothing to do with publishing.

    They just have never photographed a UFO or image that looks like one.

    Nor have any even talked about a UFO.

    And I have to disagree a bit: UFOs (as unidentified flying things) should have been picked up by some pro's camera. None ever were.

    You know that old Sagan bromide, which I'll paraphrase: the absence of photos doesn't mean photos of absence (or something like that).


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • Between my wife and myself, we have I'd guess 25K photos we've shot in and around Arches and Canyonlands national parks, 1997-2010. Lots of them have 100 mile horizons and big skys; altitudes between 4000-6000 feet. There are no ufos in them. There also aren't any airplanes. Where they were shot is on the flight path for Las Vegas, to and from the east.

    What I've found is one photo with a hang glider in it that I hadn't seen at the time.

    So, no planes in an area with daily flights, and no military planes, nor even local tourist flights over the red rock, no ufos. Just a hang glider in 13 years.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • See....

    Just what I mean.

    Thanks, Don.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, January 05, 2013  

  • Photos.... UFOs... ...so, RR, why NOT a detailed analysis of the photoCon of Roswell, the self-acclaimed-son-of-the-original-AAF-contracted-alien-body-photog:

    ...Jack Rodden Jr. ????

    (...I mean, dear boys, both Donny and Kevie TOTALLY bought in to this Sad Sack....

    By Blogger Kurt Peters, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • RR:

    "Where are the UFO photos from Professionals?"

    ....seriously Dude?

    ...ever hear of Adobe Photoshop??

    SO sorry to disappoint you, but ALL photos, including Bragalia's upcoming Ramey Memo "Exclusive" are suspect, at least.....

    By Blogger Kurt Peters, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Did I read you correctly? ANOTHER Ramey photo analysis, this time an 'exclusive'? Is this really credible?

    A perfect example of the maxim:

    "If the real evidence is not there we shall put it there".

    Think only of MJ-12.

    By Blogger cda, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Christopher...

    I think KP was just being obnoxiously provocative.

    I know of no new Ramey memo analysis being worked on, at least not by Tony Bragalia.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • I'm no stranger to a camera. I know my way around. I'll admit. I rarely get unwanted things in frame. When taking my more thoughtful images, I study a scene and patiently wait for my moment. I've gotten birds, which are fine. There's a stray jet or two. If I don't like them, I photoshop them out. I can't help but think of the ubiquitous orb and how amateurs running around with point-and-shoots get them left and right (I've harangued readers about this on my blog) and I almost never get them because of steps I take when shooting a photo that make all the difference. If you're a landscape photographer, you're prob up at the crack of dawn to catch that magic light and you're using a slower shutter speed, so if some UFO is streaking across the sky it will probably be lost.

    By Blogger Cullan Hudson, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Cullan:

    Going through Shutterbug magazine last night, I noticed how many wonderful photographers are operating in the here and now, but not one has ever, in any commentary, online, in mags, or anywhere else, mentioned that they snapped, accidentally or on purpose, a strange thing in the sky that one might tag as a UFO.

    UFOs are not purposeful grist for real photographers, nor are they accidental forays into their workaday photography.

    No pictures, no mentions, no UFOs; that says something to me.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Hmmm....let's look a bit further. As a sports fan, I watch more than my share of football and baseball games. Many of these are outdoors. Baseball is especially slow and the cameras are always panning on to moonrises, blimps, etc that appear during the game. For some reason we never see any "real" UFOs being recorded. How many games over the decades have been recorded this way yet not one "true" UFO has been recorded?
    Then there are the transitory events like meteors and airplane crashes. The Concorde crash was recorded by two different amateurs. The Peekskill meteor was recorded by something like 16 different cameras! Of course, according to statistics associated with reports, the average time of a "true" UFO report is something like 3-5 minutes. That is plenty of time to whip out a camera/cell phone/video camera and record the event clearly.
    Finally, how many UFO reports are "true" UFO reports? According to some (Friedman and Sparks), the value is something like 30% or more. There are something like 700 reports per month being reported, which means (if you believe Sparks/Friedman) that over 200 are "true UFOs". If you are more conservative (5-10%), that means that about 50 reports are "true" UFOs. That is 600 per year. What are the odds that a professional camera man or even an amateur would not be able to record these objects clearly?
    These are all questions that need to make one reconsider the statistics that are associated with all of these UFO reports. Either the numbers of 5-30% are overblown (indicating the value is really <1%) or we have to assume that these "true" UFOs are not actual craft but mundane events that are greatly misperceived or incorrectly reported.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Tim:

    You note the disparity between the UFO-diehard statistics and what appears to be the statistical reality.

    That disparity has got to be troubling to the UFO radicals.

    That it isn't, is troubling to some of us (you and me among them).

    But we have to acknowledge that UFOs have been reported by enough sane witnesses to provide a record of a substantive phenomenon.

    That no world-renown photographer ever got one on film is interesting and telling.

    That some think UFOs only appear to fools or the rabble is also interesting.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Endless hours panning an empty sky for an extremely rare event over a limited bit of atmospheric real estate requires a predisposition of lunatic proportions or a neck brace. As far as catching an image by chance, that is fairly unlikely. Most photographers have a sort of cross hairs for composition and context that is focused on earthly subjects. I cannot imagine a very talented photographer like the late David Plowden being cognizant of his immediate surroundings with the exception of what he saw through the lens. What if one did happen to catch an image on the fly..? Not much outside of a endless gaggle of overly heated materialists debated pixels for endless weeks that turn into decades.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Bruce...

    Out of the thousands of photographers, and I mean real photographers who camera-took for a career, one would think they might have seen, in the sky (or on the ground) something that they knew from media accounts might be a flying saucer or UFO.

    They didn't. They didn't get a photo of one and they didn't mention that they missed a shot of one.

    That is remarkable, if a UFO is a real phenomenon, with an after-taste.

    Photographers have the keenest eyes among the population.

    That none saw or got a photo of a UFO, in all the years of picture-taking is almost astounding.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • "Endless hours panning an empty sky for an extremely rare event over a limited bit of atmospheric real estate requires a predisposition of lunatic proportions or a neck brace."

    Which describes most meteor observers. I used to log hundreds of hours in a lawn chair observing the skies exactly like this. I knew quite a few observers who were far more dedicated than I. I don't remember any telling me stories about UFOs. Maybe they weren't looking at the right sky.

    Again, statistics show that most "true" UFOs last between 3-5 minutes (see BBSR 14 and Hendry). These UFOs are obvious to people who are not staring at the sky, therefore, they would also be obvious to the professional/amateur photographer.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Before we get too far astray about statistical anomalies regarding UFOs, let me state that my point, in the context of recent discussions here, was that I find it odd that, out of all the photographs garnered by noted photographers over the years, none have displayed a photo of a UFO or indicated they captured a photo of a UFO.

    Their archival records show no UFO pictures either....even ones that they ignored or dismissed.

    That is telling I think.

    The great photographers, Bruce, were not inclined to scour the skies for weird artifacts or flying thingies.

    But in their search for a great photograph, one would think they might have seen a UFO at some point in their search for the great pic.

    They didn't.

    It's as simple as that.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • "But we have to acknowledge that UFOs have been reported by enough sane witnesses to provide a record of a substantive phenomenon." the generous RR

    The Null hypothesis for "UFO" reports explains why this is not necessarily true, and the Psychosocial hypothesis documents the history of the "UFO" collective delusion.

    Together no questions remain, they destroy the reasons for believing there is any "phenomenon." The failure of the pseudoscience of ufoolery is a separate issue.

    Anyone might fail to identify an ambiguous visual stimulus, and even if that occurs innumerable times, it's no reason to conclude the totality of these failures represents an unknown thing. This is the fallacious reification of an abstract statistical residue

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Warrant Officer Delbert C. Newhouse was a "trained navy photographer" and took the famous Tremonton (Utah)movie of UFOs back in July of 1952. Newhouse, who saw the objects up close before he began filming, described the objects as "large, disc shaped and brightly lit"; his wife also witnessed the objects. Thousands of hours of photo analysis by the Air Force and Navy led to no prosaic explanation. (The Condon Committee analysis suggested the objects might be birds, but that conclusion is debatable.). So, Rich, their was at least one professional photographer who did manage to take 16 mm color film of more than one UFO.

    By Blogger Dominick, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Dominick:

    We all find the Tremonton movie fascinating.

    But I'm not putting Newhouse into the category referenced here.

    I'm suggesting that photographers who made it a life-long career to take pictures, becoming famous for their work, didn't see, capture or accidentally get a UFO on film during their noteworthy time in the photography field.

    Shall I name them?

    Newhouse doesn't fall into that categorical panoply.

    He was selected by the Navy for military camera work -- I have no idea what, but it wasn't to provide aesthetic renditions of life.

    That he got on film a bevy of lights that can be called UFOs is, as I've written, interesting -- especially as I, with a gaggle of neighborhood kids (boys and girls), while playing "pom-pom pull away" in the 50s one night saw something similar to what Newhouse filmed -- calling a Detroit newspaper to have someone there go outside to see them also.

    The newspaper's desk guy wasn't interested -- a kid's voice asking them to check out something seen from the suburbs.

    So I while I think that Newhouse's film record may be significant, it's as ephemeral as my long-ago sightings, which was prolonged and witnessed by about eleven others.

    I'm indicating that among credentialed photographers, who have fame and/or credulity on their side, none filmed or saw a flying saucer during their long sojourn at their craft....thousands upon thousands of camera outings and photos....all without any image we might say is a bona fide UFO.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Zoam: "Anyone might fail to identify an ambiguous visual stimulus, and even if that occurs innumerable times, it's no reason to conclude the totality of these failures represents an unknown thing."

    What is the reason to conclude the "totality of these failures represents" known things?



    By Blogger Don, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Rich, That pic of your office reminds me of Michael Sword's office (which you've posted),but with a different color scheme.

    ~ Susan

    By Blogger brownie, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Susan:

    Yes, we geezers are a sloppy lot -- although we're just putting things together here.

    I'll provide an update later on.

    There are a thousand -- I kid you not -- books in an adjacent room that have to be placed in bookcases still.

    The color scheme may change too. I hate green.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, January 06, 2013  

  • Here is an oddity I've just dug up:

    "An American press photographer, Wallace Litwin, who was on board the 'Franklin Roosevelt' had time to take three color photographs of the object before it disappeared".

    Taken from Aime Michel's "The Truth about Flying Saucers", and refers to a naval exercise in the Atlantic during Operation Mainbrace in Sept 1952.

    These pics were never published. Why not? Here was a professional photographer who did see and snap a purported UFO 3 times. Where are those photos?

    By Blogger cda, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Christopher:

    I have an early AP/magazine account of that interesting sighting.

    The photos are included I think.

    I'll look for the article.

    Litwin was a press photographer.

    While he was a pro, he doesn't fit the category I've been striving to define here -- the famous art photographers.

    Photo buffs, like Bob Ecsedy know whom I mean.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • You say that no "professional photographers" have ever snapped pictures of UFOs. Several of us give you professional photographers who DID snap such pictures, refuting your contention. Then you say, above, that you really mean that no "famous art photographers" have ever taken such pictures. O.K., Rich. But my guess is that no "famous art photographers" have ever captured a car crash, ball lightening, or a meteor, either. What does it mean? It means that UFOs and car crashes are very rare unpredictable events....and that most pros with cameras set up their shots in very predictable ways. But in one sense you do raise a legitimate issue. I've always puzzeled about the Belgian sightings. Lasted 18 months in the same general area. Hundreds and hundreds of excellent accounts by very responsible people. Yet, to my knowledge, only ONE reasonably good (nighttime) photo...and not by a pro, either. Strange.

    By Blogger Dominick, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Dominick:

    I wasn't demeaning or ignoring Pro photographers.

    My photographer, when I worked for The News-Sentinel in Fort Wayne (Dean Orewiler -- a paranormal buff) was on the look-out for strange things to photograph.

    I zeroed in on the fashion and art photographers because they have a transparent, public record and hefty archives of their efforts, things one can check out.

    Pros, generally, have not offered their oeuvre for public viewing, at least not in the way that the artistes have.

    I'm offering a place and people that one can check for themselves.

    You and others keep fixating on Professionals, per se.

    It's my fault for using that in the title of this posting.

    I always hope that visitors here are more discerning, but apparently that is a hope that is futile.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Dominick,

    Re: Newhouse film - The conclusion by two different scientific examinations of the film was that he recorded birds. I don't want to argue this but it is a fact that this is what they concluded.

    Re: car crashes, fireballs, ball lightning....These are tranistory events. UFO events are NOT like that. They last minutes and not seconds. As I pointed out that even with the tranistory nature of plane/car crashes and meteors, they have been captured on film by amateurs that clearly show that was what happened. In fact, the initial plane crash on the world trade center was recorded by a professional camera crew that happened to be with the NYC fire department that day filming a documentary.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • There are a few questions worth asking about the Litwin photos. Ruppelt tells the story (but doesn't name the photographer). Possibly the main source of the story is Chester C. Grusinski, who says he was onboard for the event.

    According to both, Litwin was shooting color film, and according to Grusinski, with a Canon 35mm camera.

    In 1952, it means Litwin was shooting Kodachrome, which at that time was ISO 8 to 12 (not sure which), so a very slow film for taking action shots (planes taking off).

    Ruppelt: "The were developed right away and turned out to be excellent".

    In order to develop Kodachrome, the ship would have had to have a Kodachrome lab, special chemistry, and the photo techs aboard would have had to have Kodak Kodachrome training.

    Kodachrome was a very different kind of film and required a unique process. I'd need proof the Navy had Kodachrome labs on board ships.

    Alternatives: Kodacolor was not available in 35mm at the time. It is possible an Agfa color film was available, though. Still to be "developed right away" means the ship had a color photo lab, and could make color prints, if it were negative color film.



    By Blogger Don, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • BTW, the Belgian photo was a hoax. The photographer confessed a year or two or ago so there are no good UFO photographs from the belgian wave. There is one amateur video I am aware of but it just shows three lights with an anti-collision beacon flashing in the middle. Nice to know that the UFOs also follow aircraft regulations.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Yah, Tim...

    Why are we still discussing the Belgium hoax?

    (I even got a note today about the Mantell episode...as if it was still a viable UFO sighting.)


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • I mentioned it only because Dominick brought it up.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • By the way, the 80s called and they want that sofa back.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • I wasn't chastising you Tim for noting the resurrected Belgium sighting.

    It brought attention to a raft of sightings that are still considered real, even after the hoaxer told us otherwise.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Hahaha PG...

    That is when it was bought.

    Our guy Wes, who keeps us current usually, wanted to throw it away when we changed offices.

    But being obsessively frugal I opted to keep it for a sub-room at the new place.

    It's barely worn, as you can see, and comfy as hell....but an eyesore for the fashionistas among you apparently.

    Wes is ridding us of the thing, it's chair and love-seat too.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Tim,

    Don't know what "scientific analysis" you are refering to with respect to the Newhouse film and the "birds" conclusion. Ed Ruppelt says clearly that the Air Force photo lab told him "We don't know what they are but they aren't airplanes or birds, and we don't think they are birds." When he turned over the film strip to the Navy for analysis, they told him that "the UFOs were intelligently controlled vehicles and that they weren't airplanes or birds." (P. 291 "The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects" 1956). This after hundreds of hours of analysis by two different photo labs at Blue Book's request. Also, remember Newhouse was the Chief photographer for the Navy and said explicitly (and he never changed his story) that he saw the objects up close before filming them. "Two pie plates pressed together" and "brighly lit discs" describes no birds that I am aware of. Now, of course, we can discount all of this. Simply dismiss the Air Force and Navy analysis. Dismiss the obvious qualifications of the photographer and his discription of what the objects looked like close up and claim,instead, as the Condon Report does, that Newhouse probably just filmed some birds. Sure, why not. No wonder we get almost nowhere with this subject after all these years...

    By Blogger Dominick, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • It was William Hartmann of the Condon committee who concluded the Tremonton films were birds (seagulls). But he also originally concluded the McMinnville photos were of a genuine UFO.

    Was Hartmann wrong on both counts? i.e. were Trent's photos fakes and did the Tremonton film depict real UFOs?

    You win some, you lose some. Which partially explains why we get nowhere, or almost nowhere, with the subject.

    By Blogger cda, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Both Condon (Hartmann) and the Robertson panel concluded these were probably seagulls.
    Newhouse was not "the Chief photographer for the Navy" (whatever position that is). He was a Chief Warrant Officer, which is an enlisted man, who received a commission. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of such men in the military. Do not make his position something greater than it was.
    For those that have seen seagulls act this way, there is little mystery associated with the film. If it looks like a duck and acts like a duck, it PROBABLY IS A DUCK (in this case Gulls). I suggest you read Hartmann's analysis on the subject.
    Whatever story Newhouse gave has little bearing on what was actually filmed. That is the actual evidence, which is what this blog entry is all about. I have seen my share of individuals say they saw something but the photographs/videos revealed something more mundane.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Rich I suspect you're answering your own question when you say you're refering to art photographers.

    If you put Cecil Beaton Robert Capa and Robert Mapplethorpe down in the same location Beaton'll immediately home in on the nearest exquisitely lit elfin face Capa the nearest example of rugged grace struggling to surface in the midst of unrelenting chaos and Mapplethorpe anything that can be lit to resemble someone's cock but nothing that resembles a UFO.

    If however you could wheel on an enchantingly angelic Nordic alien Beaton'd be on it in a flash.

    The charred torn apart remains of the Roswell crew strewn amongst the wreckage of their flying saucer Capa.

    A grey lit who can be lit to resemble an enormous anthropomorphic penis Mapplethorpe.

    By Blogger alanborky, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • Tim,

    You still are being misleading here. You first said that "The conclusion by two scientific examinations of the film (Newhouse film) was that he recorded birds." Emphatically NOT correct. First, the first two scientific examinations of the film were done by the Air Force and by the Navy photo labs. They did NOT conclude that Newhouse had filmed birds. Indeed, as I stated above, they concluded that he probably had NOT filmed birds! And the Robertson Panel you mention did not conduct any sort of "scientific examination" (in 2 days!) and you know it. They simply discussed the issues among themselves, watched the film over and over, reread the Navy analysis, and came to a far more politically correct conclusion than the photo analyists, i.e., that birds were a probability, that they could not be ruled out. This is perfectly in line with some of the other "conclusions" reached by the Robertson Panel, i.e., that the entire subject is hardly worthy of scientific study.

    By Blogger Dominick, at Monday, January 07, 2013  

  • This is all very sceptic minded.
    To say that ufos don't exist , based on the assumption that deceased professional photographers didn't share any, doesn't make it an open and shut case.
    When high-ranking military personnel see a silent, metallic, disk shaped craft land in the woods. They ALL converge on it and even touch it. One of them recieves telepathic messages from the touch. Radiation readings shoot through the roof while analyzing the area afterwards. And for over 30 years, after retirement, they ALL still remember it like it was yesterday, and take their story to the Senate. Well.....if this is all the proof that's needed.....why should it matter that no ufo pics exist from photographers from 100 years ago?

    By Blogger Andrew B., at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Vallee has the answer to why professional photographers don't photograph UFOs.

    From page 7 of http://www.jacquesvallee.net/bookdocs/AIAA.pdf :

    Typically, the number of type-I reports is very low during the day. It starts increasing about 5 p.m. and reaches a maximum about 9 p.m. It then decreases until it reaches a minimum at 1 a.m. It rises again to a secondary maximum at 3 a.m. and returns to a low level at 6 a.m. Such a pattern suggests that the decrease in reports of close encounters between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. may simply be due to the fact that the number of potential observers falls drastically as most people spend these hours at home.

    The population of professional photographers who are outside working between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. is nil.

    By Blogger JAF, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • JAF:

    Apparently you don't have any books of classic or famous photographs.

    There are many during the hours cited by you (from Vallee).


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • The photos taken during the daylight turn out to be hoaxes with few exceptions. Those taken at night are so ambiguous and of poor quality as to be useless - a pro would be ashamed to publish anything which was anything less than top notch for fear of being accused of being a fraud. You have a combination of three factors working against the result of a professional photographing a UFO: the vast number of sightings happen during the night, nighttime photography is difficult and most pros are not at work during the night hours.

    Take a look at figure 9 on page 0 of http://www.jacquesvallee.net/bookdocs/AIAA.pdf and you'll see the problem visually illustrated. The potential number of witnesses at noon is so low it hardly registers (possibly under 100). By 2 a.m. the figure is about 6,000.

    But heck, I'm all eyes if you can cite more than a couple famous photos during the day which aren't known hoaxes.

    By Blogger JAF, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • I hope Andrew B is not referring to the Rendlesham case, because if he is, he has grossly misrepresented what actually happened.

    By Blogger cda, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • JAF:

    Go to your library and look through some books of photographs by famous photographers.

    You'll see a number of night photos.

    Your canard that famous photographers didn't work at night is intellectually offensive.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Beaton, Mapplethorpe, et al....yes, Alan, but also Cartier-Bresson, Adams, Stieglitz, Steichen, Mutbridge, Strand, Newman, Bourke-White, Avedon....

    Should I go on?

    Again, photographers, like painters, see things that the rest of us don't.

    Don Ecsedy understands this.

    That they didn't see UFOs, let alone capture one on film, intrigues -- me.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Dom,

    I am not going to belabor this but when you use "catch phrases" like "politically correct" to describe what the Robertson panel did, you really are just repeating the standard UFOlogical stand. These gentlemen were not "yes" men as portrayed by various UFO books, who were being politically correct. If that were the case, they never would have brought in people with such impressive qualifications.
    Hartmann described all the studies done in the Condon report describes the problems with them. I am not going to rehash this over and over again. It still remains that UFOlogists have to prove they were not birds. The studies you cite have been shown to be inaccurate (see Hartmann).

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • I didn't mean to be offensive on my earlier comment. Yes, there are pros who work at night, but not a large enough number to boost the odds of a photo opportunity presenting itself. To me what you are observing is a statistical artifact. The number of ordinary folks taking photos swamps the number of pros taking photos (even though the pros take more photos per person). The odds that anybody is going to take a UFO photo is small because the event is rare, the odds it will be a professional photographer is very small, the odds that it will be a famous professional photographer is even smaller still because there are so few of them.

    There are 139,500 professional photographers in the U.S. ( http://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/photographers.htm ). There are roughly 139,500,000 people working in the U.S. ( http://www.bls.gov/cps/cpsaat09.htm ). As a VERY crude first approximation, that would make for 1 professional photographer out of 1,000 ordinary citizens. So for a very first level approximation, one might expect 1,000 UFO photos by non-pros to 1 by a pro. Of course, if you want to limit it to famous professional photographers, then the odds get even worse. The sample population of all UFO photos is so small that you can't make any meaningful conclusion from the lack of even one being by a famous professional. Chance is the explanation for your observation.

    By Blogger JAF, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • JAF:

    I hafta like your statistical hooly-gooly -- as my discipline in school and afterward was psychometric methods.

    But your premise that there are so few professional photographers indicates a desire to skew your argument by ignoring my post and what it said.

    Since the advent of photography, as outlined in the book pictured and others I have (1840 to the present day), there are a plethora of photographers, who took a gazillion photos over the years -- everywhere in the world, at all times of the day and in all seasons.

    Their archives are extant mostly. Their ruminations about their craft also.

    No pictures of an odd object in the sky or on the ground, and no mention of any either.

    You can play with the numbers but you're not fooling me or anyone else here who is skilled in statistical waywardness.

    You're a smart guy, who wants to believe in UFOs.

    I, too, believe that UFOs exist and are a palpable phenomenon.

    But I;m not going to twist numbers to make my belief a "reality."

    You do yourself harm, intellectually by such nonsense.

    But I enjoy what you have to say here and at Kevin Randle's blog.

    You present what appear to be cogent arguments.

    That they aren't is grist for a kind of perverse pleasure.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Well, then what does the lack of UFO photos taken by famous pros indicate to you? Can you suggest any reason why this is so? Or don't you want to make any hypothesis?

    Can we argue that since no famous professional photographers have taken photos of men on the moon that no men have ever been on the moon nor have any real photos of men on the moon been taken?

    By Blogger JAF, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • My observation JAF is not worth an hypothesis.

    It's just odd, as I've written several times here, that among all the photos taken by "pros" there are none that one can call a UFO and there are no mentions of UFOs either.

    This means UFOs are inconsequential -- which I think is true -- not as preponderant as you and others would like them to be.

    They are non-events in the great scheme of things.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Just a final note, perhaps, on the Newhouse film. Everyone should watch the Newhouse interview on U-tube if you think that "birds" are a reasonable explanation for this important film. (The birds explanation, BTW, was rejected by the Air Force and Navy analyists for, among other reasons, there was no sign of "flapping" in any of the film frames. It was Dr. Luis Alverez on the Robertson Panel who first suggested--based on no new evidence or analysis-- that seagulls might be a "possible" solution to the Trementon images; now it's simply reported as "fact." Newhouse, of course, knew they were NOT seagulls or birds of any kind. After all, he first saw the objects directly overhead. That's why he said from the very first interview that they looked like "two pie plates stuck together" and appeared "metallic." By the time he actually filmed them, they were at a considerable distance from the camera and looked nothing like (just balls of light) what he had actually seen. Also, Tim, for your information, Newhouse, when asked in the interview, describes his official title in the Navy as "Chief Photographer"...which is exactly what I reported above.

    By Blogger Dominick, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • I'm with Dominick on this one.

    The Tremonton images as birds is as ludicrous for an explanation as that silly bird explanation for the Lubbock Lights.

    That doesn't mean the images are ET craft or even bona fide UFOs, but birds?

    Arnold saw pelicans, but Newhouse caught something anomalous, much like the things I saw as a kid, and noted above.

    The reflective quality of the images goes against the bird theory, no matter what species of bird one is citing.

    The movement of the images bespeaks something unbirdlike also.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 08, 2013  

  • Why is the birds (plover) explanation for the Lubbock Lights 'silly'? This was the very answer put forward by the professors themselves, after a thorough analysis. By this I do NOT mean the formation lights photographed by Carl Hart. I mean those lights seen repeatedly over many nights by those professional witnesses, i.e. the guys at the technological college.

    It was the 'moths' answer that was silly - being put out by Ruppelt to disguise the true answer so as to preserve the man's identity. Once this man's identity (Prof Ducker) emerged, it seemed a rather pointless exercise. Moths replacing birds. Big deal! As to 'switching' an an answer to a UFO case, have you ever heard anything as dotty as this, and from an official source?

    By Blogger cda, at Wednesday, January 09, 2013  

  • Christopher...

    Have you seen plovers at night (or even in the daytime)?

    That someone thinks they reflect light (from street lamps -- which have covers over their tops, as they did have, in Lubbock) is ludicrous.

    The lights may not have been UFOs but they surely weren't plovers.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, January 09, 2013  

  • Dom,

    You stated he was the "chief photographer of the navy", which is NOT what Newhouse stated. He was a photographer's mate and a CWO. That means his position would have been the division officer for the photography section at whatever command he was located. He would have been the "chief photographer" (actually this would have been the position of the leading chief petty officer, which Newhouse was before he was promoted to CWO) for that command (i.e. USS Lexington, USS Sculpin, USS Simms, etc.). He would NOT have been the chief photographer of the navy. CWO's are not assigned such lofty titles.

    BTW, if you aren't even going to read what Hartmann wrote, I see no reason to argue this endlessly. Some of the statements you are making are incorrect based on his analysis.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Wednesday, January 09, 2013  

  • Tim,

    Why assume that I have not read what Hartmann wrote? I most emphatically have read what he wrote but, frankly, I've been reluctant to bring it up and prolong this debate. O.K., you insist. Let's finally tell the readers of this blog what Hartmann concluded and why.

    First, it's important to note that Hartmann did no independent analysis of the film for the Condon Report. (Remember, the Air force and Navy did thousands of man-hours of original work on this film). The Robertson panel did none and Hartmann did none but relied mostly on the photo analysis (reports) done by R.M.L. Baker, Jr in 1955 for Douglas Aircraft. Baker's most substantive point was to assume that Newhouse panned the camera while filming thus reducing the alleged speed of the objects as calculated by the Navy. This reduced speed now made the objects "compatible with birds." But were they birds? There is little doubt that Hartmann thinks that they were birds (not because of the reduced speeds...that only makes them "compatible" with birds) but because on a trip out to Utah he witnessed birds in the air and the images were similar to the Newhouse film. That's it, ladies and gentlemen; his personal observation seals the scientific analysis! That's the substance of the Hartmann analysis in a nutshell: Newhouse probably panned the camera and I (Hartmann) saw birds in Utah and they looked like the Trementon images. Wow, I'm really impressed.

    Hartmann also says that the strongest negative arument that the images on film were NOT birds is that the witness (Newhouse) said "that the objects were shapped like two saucers held together rim to rim, BUT THAT THE PHOTOGRAPHS AND CIRCUMSTANCES INDICATE THAT THIS OBSERVATION COULD NOT HAVE BEEN MEANINGFUL. This statement, both false and misleading, should insult our intellegence (but much of the Condon Report does that). Newhouse clearly stated that he saw the objects overhead and THAT'S WHEN THEY LOOKED LIKE TWO PIE PLATES RIM TO RIM. Of course the film does not depict two saucers rim to rim; the objects had moved far in the distance when filmed (and Hartmann must know this). So his statement that the film does not make the observations "meaningful" is purposefully misleading.

    And what murky "circumstances" can Hartmann be referring to? Newhouse is almost an ideal witness; his family also witnessed the objects. His account of events never varied. The weather was clear and cloudless. Newhouse was a CWO in the Navy for 19 years and a graduate of the naval photographic school with more than 1000 hours on aerial photo missions. Can we get better circumstances? No, contrary to Hartmann, the "photographs and the circumstances" make Newhouse's observations extremely "meaningful." Newhouse saw structure and not birds and if he had had his camera fully loaded on the car seat (and not in the trunk, unloaded) "there would be no controversy...the Air Force would alrady KNOW what the objects were."

    By Blogger Dominick, at Wednesday, January 09, 2013  

  • And Dominick...

    The "birds" in the film followed no ornithological flight pattern and especially if they were the alleged sea gulls proffered as an explanation.

    Newhouse may not be among the ranks of great photographers but he was an advanced amateur, qualified to be called a pro.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, January 09, 2013  

  • Arnold saw pelicans? Over Mt. Rainier? Uh. I don't think so. Washington isn't the breeding or wintering ground for great white pelicans (though they occasionally are seen migrating north-south through the east end of the state far from Rainier). The more common brown pelicans stick to the Washington coastline.

    I'm not saying that Arnold didn't see birds, but they would more likely be trumpeter swans or snow geese, both of which are large, white, and plentiful in the western part of the state during their wintering season.

    Right now, out in the rural fields you can see large flocks of both types of birds. When a flock takes wing, it can simply take your breath away. They really are magnificent in the air.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Thursday, January 10, 2013  

  • PG:

    We've done (as have others) an extensive posting on Pelicans and Arnold; the pelican migratory patterns especially.

    You can find that post here or at our RRRGroup blog.

    There are photos also, to augment our thesis.

    (We really think Arnold saw Navy jet prototypes and have provided circumstantial material about that too, online here or at RRRGroup; our Pelican thing was posted just to get Jerry Clark's goat as he lividly continues to address the Pelican idea as the view of Pelicanists -- a coined word that is meant to negate the Pelican proposition, which is not a bad one.)


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, January 10, 2013  

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