An Introduction and How-To of Orb Photography
Have you ever taken a picture against a dark background and seen a floating bright orb-shaped light seemingly sparkling with geometric shapes or designs within their center? If so, there’s a chance you inadvertently captured the elusive, playful and fun-loving “orb”. So, what’s an orb? Many people believe orbs might possibly be ghosts, or some sort of otherworldly being. Others still believe that they’re nothing more than light refracting off of dusts motes and raindrops. Over the course of the last few years, I have taken almost one hundred gigabytes in orb pictures, and I’ve found that while dust and rain drops can create orb-like shapes, marring otherwise lovely pictures, there are ways to tell the difference between a paranormal experience and the rather mundane reality of Dust-Motes refracting light back to the camera.
In the past, every now and again orbs would show up in the background of a picture taken with a regular old 35mm Camera, but with the introduction of digital cameras to the general population the sightings of orbs have vastly increased. So what exactly is an orb? Well, many different people have many different theories, but from my experience I have found them to be intelligent beings that enjoy actually interacting with you and the camera. Science has determined that there are different realms of energy that we as human beings interact with on daily basis, and while there are quite a few that we could talk about I’m going to limit this discussion to the energy of infrared and the realm we see and touch every day.
Why do cameras pick up Orbs? Well, the commonly held belief is that Orbs move into the infrared frequency, the same energetic frequency that our microwave ovens and remote controls work on, and when you take a picture the light of the flash hits the orbs ‘body’ and refracts the light back to the camera leaving an imprint of the entities current form in your photo. Since this occurs in the infrared frequency, the relatively recent adoption of infrared filters into most high-end digital cameras these days has limited the sightings of orbs. By the end of this article, I’ll teach you the basics of ‘Orb Hunting’ that I’ve learned from years of experience taking orb photos, including how to locate a camera that does not have an infrared filter without having to read through the manual of each camera you are interested in.
I’ve found throughout my experience photographing orbs that they tend to have unique and beautiful patterns and designs within their bodies. In my opinion, this is what truly distinguishes a paranormal Orb from a dust mote. While orbs can come in a variety of colors ranging from golden pink, reds, greens, blues, purples, pale white just to name a few, they can show up with varying intensities ranging from bright to very, very dimly lit. They can even have varying shapes and sizes. Sometimes, you’ll catch a ‘tail’ almost like a comet’s trailing after an orb , this indicates movement. Every once in a while, you’ll see an orb with a foggy energy, often called ‘plasma’, that seems to be coming off of the orb in question, in my experience this sort of picture is capturing an orb unfolding itself into a different or ‘new’ shape. Where orbs are present, so is plasma energy. Plasma can appear like a dense fog rolling through your picture, only there was no fog at all at the time the picture was taken. In my experience plasma is relatively common when you have many different entities around and is most often just a gathering of energy.
Despite the fact most orbs have unique and intricate patterns within their core, sometimes they will shift form and make faces at you, I find that this happens most often when they are intent on interacting with you as the pictures are being taken. Each orb is an individual, and to my surprise after hundreds of photos I realized that the same orbs were coming to ‘play’ with me night after night and I was able to name and keep track of various different orb beings by carefully examining the details within their bodies. Once I’d given them a name, I found that I could ask different entities to come play with me and they would oftentimes come when I asked so long as my request was respectful.
Orbs made from dust and raindrops typically are relatively indistinct without the intensity and intricacy of an entity and they can have almost a button or nucleus within their center reminiscent of a cell or ameba. To capture a dust-orb the dust particles must be between 2-8 inches from the camera, and shouldn’t make much of an image much further or closer than that. A good way to become educated as to what the differences are would be to take some dust and throw it into the air in front of you while taking pictures, and then carefully inspect the photos of the dust and that of the orbs pictures you’ve taken. Remember, the dust must be less than a foot away from you, if an orb in a picture is partially obscured by an object such as a bush or a tree, then it cannot be dust and is almost always a genuine orb entity.
Like I mentioned above, not only is each orb distinct in its general appearance, but they also enjoy interacting with us. I have found that parties with a lot of joyful energy, such as Weddings, birthdays, playful get togethers, and just about any gathering that plays music and dances, are almost always likely to draw orbs, sometimes numbering up into the three digits. If you ask for them to come down into your pictures, they often will oblige, if you ask them to disappear for a few pictures, most of the time they’ll respect your request. Orbs can unfold from the typical round shape into ghostly or humanoid shapes of mist-like light or even darkness and some of these beings are able to actually imprint specific images, sometimes even words, into your picture. Such events are uncommon, but do indeed happen. A word might appear as a mist, or it may just be light or darkness when you take the picture.
So, you want to start taking orb pictures yourself? Here’s a list of things you’ll need:
1. A digital camera without an infrared filter. The easiest way to tell if your camera has a filter or not is to point a remote control, such as your TV or Stereo control, at your camera and push any button. If a red light is emitted from the remote control then you’re good to go! If however you do not see a red light coming from the remote control you are using a camera that does have an infrared filter, and you’ll need to find a different one. Most Cannon cameras are made without the filter, as well as lower end or cheaper cameras. However, be careful in choosing a cheaper camera because the more in-focus your pictures are the more distinct your orbs will be and that will be useful later in identifying individuals. A camera with a date and time stamp is also important and very useful for keeping track of when each picture was taken.
2. A journal or notebook dedicated to your orb adventures. This will be very helpful in later identifying what the weather conditions were like, as well as any notes about your surroundings or experiences when taking the pictures. For example, if you get a picture filled with plasma, it’s useful to mark down the time of the picture and indicate whether or not any Fog had been present at the time, so later when you return to the photo you’ll be able to tell if the energy on the camera was weather related or paranormal in nature.
3. A computer. This is important for going through your pictures , the bigger the screen is the easier it is to see any orbs. It’s also helpful to have a computer and photography program available just in case you need to lighten the photo to more easily see your orbs. Sometimes you won’t be able to see any orbs at all until you lighten the picture, and suddenly you are able to see multiple entities. If you do not have a photo program on your computer there are many available on the internet for free.
4. An extra battery. This is optional, but since some paranormal entities will drain your battery it might be helpful to have a spare on hand.
5. A digital recorder. This is optional, however, some entities can make noise that is not audible to the human ear, but is able to be captured by the much more sensitive digital equipment. You can find a relatively inexpensive digital recorder in many places locally as well as online. A voice or noise captured on the digital recorder is referred to as an “EVP” which stands for Electronic Voice Phenomena.
6. A positive attitude!
Most people I have spoken too, even in the field of paranormal investigation, have spent little time researching Orbs, and as a result of that they are completely ignorant to the fact orbs are generally intelligent entities, and not residual manifestations that are unable to respond. Play with the orbs, have fun. When you’re outside, speak to them as if they can hear and understand you. Ask the orbs to come into your photos, explain to them that you are interested in getting to know more about them, act as though they are interested in what you are doing and share your thoughts, ask questions of them, and expect a response. As you speak to them, if you’ve purchased a digital recorder, have it running and place it somewhere stationary so the sounds of movement are limited and you are more likely to get less audio interference. You might even explain to them that the digital recorder can pick up sounds, and if they’d like to tell you something they can speak into the device, and while you may not hear them now you might be able to hear it later when you listen to the playback.
Orbs love to be in positive environments, they seem to truly enjoy dancing and music, or any place there is a lot of laughter to be heard. I find that when I take orb pictures during these sorts of events my results can sometimes be overwhelming with multiple entities in each picture. The more often you take these pictures, the more likely you are to get increasingly good results as many entities and beings enjoy interacting. You might find that week after week your results just continue to increase, I almost never come in empty handed anymore when I go out to take pictures. This is most likely because they are interested in who we are and what we’re doing. Respect that, they’re giving you a gift by playing with you.
As many of you may know, those of us who go out and investigate paranormal experiences often times will get a battery that had just been charged to full suddenly drained dead. The commonly held belief in the paranormal community is that an entity or being is gathering the energy around it to manifest in some way. So it’s never a bad idea to have an extra fully charged battery ready and waiting just in case this happens to you.
While orbs can be photographed against a light background, it is much easier to see them against a dark background. For that reason I suggest at least starting out with your picture-taking at night or in the dark. Sometimes you’ll find very pale images that were completely invisible on the tiny LCD screen most cameras sport, but are just barely seen on the larger and more detailed computer screen. This isn’t that uncommon. Like I mentioned before, the very best way to see these orbs better is to simply lighten the entire picture using a picture program. Make sure all you do is shift the light spectrum, which will make the orbs pop out better, this isn’t really considered ‘doctoring’ your photo, and it should still be accepted throughout the paranormal community.
Remember, always have the date and time stamp visible on each picture you take, and mark exceptional pictures in your journal as well as any surrounding unique sights and sounds, whether it’s dusty, rainy, misty or foggy. Rain and Mist don’t tend to make the same sort of images as dust does, but sometimes will appear as pinpoints of sparkling light in your photo. It’s good to make a mention when a picture was taken in such circumstances so you do not confuse it with a paranormal experience. As important as it is to mark when there is dust, rain, mist and fog I find it’s equally important to mark down when there isn’t, this will make it much easier for you to identify your most exceptional pictures.
Keep your eye out for returning orbs, examine each entity carefully and keep an eye out for individuals who return to you night after night or week after week. That suggests the being in question is interested in you, or is enjoying playing with you and your camera. You may be able to elicit more interesting pictures as well as possibly get some good EVP’s from a being who continues to return to see you over and over again. Give them names, ask if that’s okay with them and project your happiness and enjoyment as much as possible.
It is possible for you to feel orbs energetically, as well as see them with your own eyes. The human brain tends to shy away from things it doesn’t know, but after weeks or months taking orb pictures you may find that you can see them very light and pale in the sky. If you’re at all interested in practicing this ability, it would be a good idea to grow still and quiet and feel about yourself both with your eyes and your body or energy. You’re pictures will get better and better as you increase in skill. I can ‘see’ orbs and beings both with my eyes as well as feel them energetically. It can be very fun taking pictures with a friend, taking turns being in the pictures and pointing where you feel or see the orbs to be, and seeing how accurate you are. Remember, the orb must be in the infrared spectrum to be captured on the camera, so even if you feel it there sometimes they won’t show in your photo. It’s never a bad thing to practice being more aware, and a side effect of engaging in this hobby will be increasing awareness of what’s around you.
Lastly, sometimes people ask me “How can you make sure that you don’t have a *bad* experience with an entity?” Positive versus negative interactions with entities or beings is almost solely dependent upon you. If you are frightened and praying that nothing bad gets you, you’re likely to call exactly those sorts of entities to yourself and environment that you were hoping to avoid. The good news is that because Orbs have never really been associated with scary hauntings or grisly sounds and images most people approach them with only a sense of awe, curiosity, and excitement rather than the fear, loathing, and terror that generally precipitates a negative encounter with a paranormal entity or being. Orbs tend to be seen as more playful, curious and kind by those of us who spend a great deal of time amidst them, and as such, Orb hunting is probably one of the best ways to begin getting into the hobby of paranormal investigation. The more positive experiences you have, the more confident you become that your own state of mind has a vast and lasting impact on the entities who decide to come make your acquaintance as well as the experiences you have with them. Once you are able to push fear aside, other realms of paranormal investigating will become much easier as well as less frightening and much more enjoyable.
I hope this article has been enlightening and enjoyable, keep your eyes peeled for my next article which will be a “How-To” on taking an “Orb Self-Portrait”, where I will explain how you can take a picture of yourself in orb form.