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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

SASQUATCH: New Photo Released Of Possible Bigfoot And Why Out Of Focus?

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This video showing the picture was recently put out on YouTube. Take a look and judge for yourself.

The guys commenting on the picture talk about the out of focus problem, as with most pictures of supposed sasquatch. In this case, as with most cases, I believe it's the product of an amateur photographer with an amateur type camera in low light conditions. Unless you are savvy to the more technical side of photography, you're probably using a fully automatic, point and shoot type camera. So, in this instance, it was in a darker, shadowy forest setting. There is no apparent sunlight shining in, possibly taken at dusk. In those conditions, an automatic camera would make adjustments to capture as much light as possible. This would cause the shutter speed to be slowed down quite a bit, to let more light in to the camera, to make a brighter image. This would cause the blurring effect of a fast moving object. I believe the background is out of focus because the photographer was following the subject as it was running away, or possibly lifting the camera to get the subject into frame, so not only was the subject moving fast, but the camera was probably moving quickly in order to get the supposed squatch into frame.

Modern technology is a hindrance in most cases. Sightings usually last only seconds. I know with my older point and shoot, it was always set to auto mode, to speed things up. Being an older digital camera, it took at least 4 seconds to power on, then I'd have to raise it up to frame the subject, and if I depressed the shutter button quickly, it wouldn't allow the camera's auto focus to properly adjust, so any pics taken in haste, were usually out of focus. Swinging the camera into position, in low a light setting, like under a forest canopy, and trying to frame and focus on a moving subject, all ads up to blurry and out of focus photographs. With automatic cameras, focus can be a big issue too. Especially if you are in a forest, and your subject is visible only through trees and vegetation, the auto-focus is going to have difficulty discerning what it is focusing on. Especially in the case if you zoom in. Focus tends to be slower and less accurate if there are multiple objects between you and the subject. The only way to correct these issues is to make adjustments to the camera's exposure, and then have the ability to manually focus. Point and shoot cameras don't allow for focusing manually. Video cameras will behave in much of the same manner. In low light, video will turn out grainy or foggy looking, causing the out-of-focus look.

Most of the new entry level DSLR cameras have amazing low light capability, if you know how to properly adjust the settings for the environment your in. For those who are not familiar, DSLR cameras are the ones that have the detachable lenses, such as the Canon EOS line and Nikon D3100 and D5200. You can get these cameras in a kit with lens and bag for $400-$500 at Costco, Sam's or BestBuy. There are many great tutorials, tips and examples of the 1080p HD videos these are able to take as well as the high resolution photos these cameras are capable of.

This is an example I found on YouTube of video shot in a low light, forest setting on an overcast day. Look how clear objects are when focused on. You can get a wider range of focus. In this video, the videographer purposely set the camera to blur the background to focus on certain subjects, to get a more cinematic effect. Photographs are just as professional looking with these DSLR type cameras. This was shot with a Nikon D5200.

Remember, when a person has a sighting, they are not in the clearest or calmest frame of mind. The adrenalin starts flowing, nerves go into overload and in the excitement, fumbling with the camera and getting a great picture would be near impossible, especially if the sighing only lasts a few seconds. Unless you are a professional photographer, or at least a seasoned hobbyist, with your gear set for the light conditions at that precise moment, along with all the other variables, it would be pure luck to snap a decent photograph.

Photography has always been a serious hobby of mine. Economic conditions have just held me back from acquiring new gear. I plan on buying new camera equipment in the next few months, in time for summer in the Sierras. I'll probably post more on the subject of photography if requested. I hope this helps understand the anomaly of out-of-focus blob squatches.

Email me at stbigfoot@gmail.com if you'd like some thoughts about how you can use your current gear to get a better photo when you're out squatchin.

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