Post by Herbert Blenner on Feb 12, 2019 15:01:06 GMT -5
Properties of a Zapruder Film Blemish by Herbert Blenner | Posted April 22, 2013
Many frames of the Zapruder film show an irregularly shaped blemish beneath a small clump attached to a hairlike filament. The blemishes appear at practically the same position beneath the upper sprocket holes and fall within the contingent ghosts. These characteristics invite further investigation.
Part One - Recognition of the Blemishes as Stationary Objects Frames Z-238/Z-239 show blemishes to the right of the tree trunk at the level of the boundary between the bushes and the grass.
The upper sprocket holes on frames with aligned blemishes show slight misalignment by an amount comparable to difference in size of the individual sprocket holes. Consequently, the blemishes are recognized as stationary with respect to the optical system.
Post by Herbert Blenner on Feb 12, 2019 15:06:45 GMT -5
Part Two - Blemishes Behaving as Ghost Shadows
Frames Z-248 through Z-250 are perhaps unique to the Zapruder film. They consecutively show the blemishes against three different backgrounds. Frame Z-248 shows the blemish against a reddish background of the bushes while the green grass is the background of the blemish on frame Z-250. The intermediate frame, Z-249, pictures the blemish over the face of a spectator.
The interior of the blemish on Z-248 is darker then its immediate surroundings and closely matches the color of the bushes beyond the illumination by the diffuse light. On frame Z-250 the interior of the blemish is a darker shade of green than the surrounding grass. In both cases these blemishes behave as the shadows of an opaque object. Finally on frame Z-249, the blemish shields the face of a spectator from the diffuse light and reveals features reminiscent of eyes and a nose. These observations argue that these blemishes were ghost shadows.
Frames Z-284 and Z-285 show the ghost images of a spectator who was standing on the north side of Elm Street. These ghosts show the covered head and upper back of the spectator. The Zoom button enables examining these ghosts and the contained blemishes with a 3-power magnification. These enlargements show that the interiors of the blemishes contain darker and lighter shades of green separated by vertical boundaries. The boundaries coincide with the demarcation lines between the underexposed portions of the grass in the sprocket region and the properly exposed parts of the grass in the main areas of the frames. These observations are consistent with the blemishes being opaque objects that shield a portion of the film from the ghost images. This interpretation presents the blemishes as shadows cast beneath the frame's field of view. So in these cases the blemishes behave as ghost shadows.
Frame Z-327 shows the ghost image of the front wheel of a motorcycle. The blemish appears over the lower right portion of this wheel. If the blemish were not a ghost shadow then the color of its interior would be a mixture of the color of the wheel and the color of the green grass. Under this condition the color inside the blemish would differ from the surrounding grass. Careful examination of the interior of this blemish reveals shades of green that match the color of nearby grass beyond the diffuse light. So these matching shades of green show that the blemish behaves as a ghost image. The blemishes on frames Z-328 and Z-329 show similar and perhaps stronger behavior, which the classified the blemish of Z-327 as a ghost shadow.
Post by Herbert Blenner on Feb 12, 2019 15:08:14 GMT -5
Part Three - Classification of the Diffuse Light as a Ghost Fog
Frames Z-266 and Z-267 show brighter bands of diffuse light surrounding the ghost shadows. These bands did not lighten the darkened interiors of the ghost shadows. So these bands exposed the film at the same time as the ghost shadows. Since photographers refer to diffuse light as a fog, I will call these misplaced bands of diffuse light ghost fogs.
Frames Z-266 and Z-267
The ghost fog has no distinct boundary on its left side, which fades into the background while it has sharp lower and right boundaries. These sharp boundaries form a rounded corner and maintain nearly constant and not exact displacements from the sprocket holes and the ghost shadow. This consistency differs from the downward movement of the upper boundary that generally causes the area of ghost fog to decrease.
Frames Z-276 and Z-277 reveal a strong relationship between the extent of the ghost fog and visibility of a portion of the ghost shadow. On the former frame the ghost fog surrounds the clump and makes this detail plainly visible. However, the next frame shows that the downward motion of the upper boundary of the ghost fog greatly reduced the illumination of the clump and made it nearly invisible. This event demonstrates that the moving boundary separates dense from tenuous ghost fogs.
Frames Z-276 and Z-277
The blemishes are nearly invisible on frames 290 through 292. For example, the unaided eye is unlikely to recognize the blemish by a normal viewing of Z-291. This faint blemish may be perceived by clicking the link for Z-278, placing your mouse pointer over the blemish, pressing the Tab key to move focus to the Z-290 link and striking Enter to display Z-290. The mouse pointer directs your attention to the barely visible blemish. Repeating the above steps enable viewing Z-291 with the mouse pointer marking the position of the now practically invisible blemish.
Post by Herbert Blenner on Feb 12, 2019 15:09:28 GMT -5
Part Four - Irreconcilable Problems of the Blemishes
Superficially frames Z-232, Z-233 and Z-234 appear to show coincidences between the lowermost visible portion of the blemishes and a moving boundary between the red bushes and the green grass. However, on frame Z-233 a purple ghost fog appears on the grass that falls within the known boundaries of the blemish. This behavior on Z-233 is evidence that the blemish was not present when the green-blue ghost fog fell upon film later exposed by the grass and was present when this fog fell upon the film later exposed by the red bushes.
Frames Z233 and Z234
The interaction between the blemish and the trunk of a tree on frame Z-237 provides further evidence that this blemish was not an in camera defect, which simultaneously affected all layers of the film. Frames Z-235 and Z-239 show the main bodies of the blemishes behaving as ghost shadows by shielding the red bushes from the lightening effects of the ghost fogs. These fogs are too far from the tree trunk to alter its appearance and show the shaded and sunlit portions of the trunk separated by a vertical terminator. This demarcation is clearly seen at the vertical level of the ghost shadows. Further frames immediately surrounding Z-237, Z-236 and Z-238 also show the bodies of the blemishes shielding the red bushes from the ghost fogs. However, the ghost fogs wipe out the differences in brightness and color between the shaded and lit portions of the trunk. Based upon previous observations, the interior of the ghost shadow on Z-237 should show a darker portion on its left side separated from a lighter portion on its right side by a vertical boundary. The appearance of a solid darker portion in the interior of the blemish on Z-237 disallows its behavior as a ghost shadow. Instead the blemish behaves as a proper image with respect to the tree trunk while the surrounding frames show the blemish behaving as ghost shadows during its interactions with the red bushes.
Frames Z236 and Z237
Frames Z238 and Z239
These dichotomies show that the original Zapruder film was split by color into separate films. This step enabled altering some images without changing images of different colors. At this point, the blemishes afflicted one color-separated film. The recombination of the color-separated films into the composite that we know as the Zapruder film inadvertently produced these contradictory aspects of the blemishes.
The blemish on a portion of Z-285. If the blemish were a proper image whose position coincided with the ghost image of the spectator then the color inside the blemish would be a mixture of the clothing color worn by the spectator and the green grass. Since the color inside blemish matches the color of the surrounding grass, this mixing did not take place. So the shade of green inside the blemish requires that it was a ghost shadow. This ghost shadow is one aspect of the contradictory behavior of the blemish.
On the right side of figure five, the blemish from Z-237 appears to partially eclipse the trunk of a tree. If the blemish were a ghost shadow as required by its interaction with the clothing of the spectator then it would have blocked the diffuse light and show an unaltered tree trunk within its boundaries. Instead the appearance of a blemish with an interior far darker than its surroundings is the other aspect of its contradictory behavior.
Frames Z-355 and Z-356 provide another example of the blemish changing its behavior from a ghost shadow to a proper image. On Z-355 the blemish has a green interior whose color matches the color of the grass beyond the ghost fog. These observations show behavior of the blemish as a ghost shadow. However, on Z-356 the interior of the blemish is uniformly dark. This failure to reflect the sharp difference between the green grass surrounding the left side of the blemish and the dark suit on the right side contradicts the previous behavior of the blemish as a ghost shadow. Instead Z-356 pictures the blemish as a proper image.
Frames Z-355 and Z-356
The alterations of our copy of the Zapruder film stand exposed.