Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How the Trent/McMinnville Photos were created?

This photo from The NEW Report on Flying Saucers magazine [True/Fawcett, NY, 1967] appears on Page 27 in a Lloyd Mallan article entitled “There’s More (and less) to Saucers than Meets the Eye.”

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The saucer depicted consists of two paper plates glued together by Gary Buboltz, hung on a clothesline with a thin thread and photographed from fifteen (15) feet. The photo may be found in the Project Blue Book files.

Here is the uncropped photo:

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Ibid: Back Cover

It shows, as Mr. Mallan points out, how easy it is or was to fake flying saucer photos.

J. Allen Hynek authenticated this photo from 1967:

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The saucer shown was a balsa-wood model, created and filmed by the Jaroslaw brothers of Michigan who hung it, by a thread, from a tree at the edge of Lake St. Clair:

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Ibid: Page 31

The idea that the Trents may have strung a truck mirror from overhead wires rankles even me. The iconic photos have their supporters and defenders, such as Bruce Maccabee, and also their critics, such as Robert Sheaffer and deceased skeptic Phil Klass.

What allows me to accept the possibility [sic] of a Trent hoax is the time factors involved in the episode: the sighting by Mrs. Trent, the calling of her husband, his trip inside the house to get their camera, and the time to take two shots before the object departed. Moreover, the object doesn’t move far enough in the sky if Bruce Maccabee’s estimate of the time between photo one and photo two taken by Mr. Trent is correct: 31 seconds.

(See a previous post here for copies of the Trent photos.)

Photos can offer proof or disproof of UFOs, as the Mallan article delineates, among other critiques of UFO photography; the advent of computer programs that can create or manipulate images exacerbates the problem of hoaxed UFO photos.

The Buboltz photo, above, emulates the Trent photos. Does it remove the “authentic” rubric given to the Trent pictures? You decide.

RR

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