reply to post by d00d557
I'm a UFO Hunter. By that I mean that whenever I'm outside I sky-watch so that I can be ready to videotape not just UFOs but any unusual aerial
phenomena. I make an effort to improve my chances looking for that elusive target by training myself to constantly scan the sky not just in front of
me but all around. UFOs are not going to always appear in your frontal line of sight so you have to look behind you and to the sides as well.
Stopping at an intersection and waiting for the light to change gives you a chance to to scan the sky 360º. It takes an effort to constantly look up
but doing so additionally provides many pleasant aerial surprises that most fail to notice. I wear Polarized sunglasses which make it easier to
locate objects in the sky as the glasses not only prevent glare, keeping your eyes from being fatigued, but also at certain angles they darken the sky
dramatically making white or silvery objects such as planes, helicopters, and certain birds such as seagulls stand out. Don't rule out anything that
you see out of hand until you've gone through a quick mental check of possibilities. These include balloons, debris, birds, and aircraft. Airplanes
at high altitudes may make you think twice since, usually, the wings are not as noticeable as the fuselage but recognition is almost instantaneous no
matter how high it is. Helicopters are rarely seen at high altitudes and their loud engines will precede their appearance. Not so with balloons
which will be the ones that will make you reach for your camcorder. Additionally, there are the added anomalous aerial attractions such as sun dogs,
displays of rainbow-like colors, etc. The main point is to remember to look up every once in a while.
Prior to the advent of the camcorder very few carried movie film cameras, mostly tourists. Not only were they bulky and heavy but the more common 8mm
(and later the Super 8) had a limit of 4 minutes worth of recording per film roll. As with still cameras, the film had to be taken to the nearby
drugstore for processing which took days and the processing was expensive. It was always a mystery while you waited for the processed film to be
returned because you didn't really know if you were successful at capturing what you saw and whether you were successful or not, you still had to pay
the processing fees. And to see what you filmed you needed a film projector. Even less carried the bigger and heavier 16mm movie cameras. Because
of the carrying facility and their lighter weight and the extended recording time with immediate playback sans processing and processing fees,
millions of individuals are carrying camcorders especially the newer models which are a marvel of miniature electronics, some with featuring an
optical zoom range of up to 40X! Not to mention the additional digital zoom range which goes beyond usability. Thanks to this accessibility, UFOs
are being recorded all over the world with more frequency and some of these videos are available on the Internet on sites devoted to UFO videos.
While camcorders, analog and digital, make hoaxing of UFOs easier, it can't be said that every camcorder owner is intent on deceiving. So we have to
accept that at least the majority of UFO videos are of real objects, in all of their variety.
I was fortunate to have videotaped a UFO in 2004. But let me caution you, no matter how prepared you think you are, as I thought I was, the
experience can still be unnerving to the point where if it's over in seconds, as mine was, you may forget the initial details of what was happening
prior to your starting to tape although, thankfully, you may still wind up with a priceless videotape. If you always carry a camcorder and/or a film
or digital still camera, you may find this article interesting and educating. Before I proceed let me digress momentarily and describe my recent
sightings and how I blew those opportunities to videotape 4 UFOs.
On the same day that I videotaped the UFO and prior to that I had seen another one flying above the broken cloud cover and as it disappeared into the
clouds I watched to see if it would appear where there was a patch of open sky ahead of it and it did. Unfortunately, in my excitement I engaged a
nearby stranger to be a witness and in trying to point out the UFO I forgot that I had my camcorder and it wasn't until the UFO was out of sight
before I awoke to that fact. After that mental failure I swore that I would be ready the next time, if there was going to be a next time. The next
time was, surprisingly, later that day and I was able to videotape a UFO but, again, it was almost a failure and I wound up with only a few seconds of
videotape when it could have been longer. To cut to the chase, I was positioned unsteadily on steep stairs and the moment I saw the UFO through the
lens, I tried to steady myself but lost my footing and almost fell.
About week after I videotaped the UFO and while standing at a bus stop I looked up and saw a solitary, small, wispy cloud in a clear sky and through
it I could see a round, white object. The cloud was stationary and so was the object. Without taking my eyes off the object I reached for my
camcorder which was in a shoulder bag, put my hand through the grip, removed the lens cover while turning it on and brought it up to my eyes,
automatically zooming the lens to its widest ratio so that I could zoom in on the object after I located the cloud in the viewfinder. If the
camcorder's lens is not at its widest, you may not be able to find the object in time since it will be like looking though a telescope. When I
looked through the viewfinder I saw nothing! The viewfinder indicator said MAGICVU and I realized I had not disabled that (infra-red) feature after
experimenting with it by taping fireflies in the backyard the night before. I had to take the camcorder away from my eyes to find the MAGICVU ON/OFF
switch and after I did so, which took just a few seconds, I looked up at the cloud but the object was gone. Before you leave your house, examine your
camcorder and make sure it's ready to go. This includes battery condition, looking through the viewfinder to see that the appropriate settings have
been made, etc.
My last sighting happened a short time after the above and this time it was a superb sighting. Unfortunately, violating my own "always be ready"
rule, I didn't carry my camcorder! As I turned a corner I automatically looked up and couldn't believe what I was seeing. Not only was the object
extremely low but it didn't move except for a slow rotation. Thinking balloon, as they are regularly seen over New York City, I stopped and stared
at it. Since I was really craning my neck, a passerby noticed and came to my side asking what I was staring at. When I pointed out the dark, round
object we started comparing notes. It was round, obviously large and not a low-altitude balloon. It was stationary. We kept staring at the object,
whatever it was, for about 5 minutes! Finally we both noticed that it seemed to rise very slowly and the young man walked away, convinced he had seen
a UFO. I kept looking at it and I could swear that I saw the round object elongate for an instant and return to its round shape. But I thought that
it might have been due to eye fatigue. Instead of great footage all I have is great memories. My camcorder is now always at my side whenever I go
The one certain thing about UFOs is that you never know when you'll see one let alone tape one. So the first rule in looking for UFOs is that when
you see something interesting, don't look away even for a second. A couple of times I saw black balloons held together by a string. There was no
doubt they were balloons with a sky full of fluffy white clouds so they stood out quite clearly. I decided to tape them just for reference but the
same thing happened with both balloons: I took my eyes away from them while I removed the camcorder from my shoulder bag and when I looked up again I
couldn't find either one. I don't know what I would have seen if I had kept my eyes on them but it seemed like they were plucked from the sky when
I looked away. Balloons are the closest aerial object when it comes to thinking that you're seeing a UFO(s). Individual ones and groups, sometimes
tied together so that they revolve around each other. Because of the occasional high winds you may see a loner catch up to a group and possibly pass
them. You never know and it's better to err on the side of caution than to make an outright judgement which could be wrong. Once you've identified
the object in your video as a balloon, or balloons, you can always erase the tape.
There are two types of UFOs: moving ones and stationary ones. Moving objects could be anything. But a stationary one is food for thought. If it's
moving you have to act quickly and hope to get an adequate image. But if it's stationary do all you can to videotape it in the best possible
quality, from resting your arm on a nearby support to including points of reference such as buildings, trees, etc. Since the experience may make you
nervous always have the EIS (Electronic Image Stabilizer) or OIS (Optical Image Stabilizer) activated. This is to minimize camera shake at a high
zoom ratio, particularly when using the digital zoom which can go up to 800X and higher in some camcorders (digital zoom beyond 2X makes the image
unusable especially when blowing the footage up - I prefer to use optical zoom only which on my digital camcorder goes up to 20X). If there is no
nearby support, use your free hand to make a steadying platform by making a fist and resting the camcorder on it or use it to cradle the bottom of the
camcorder. If you try to support the camcorder with your open hand you may induce unwanted movement. My camcorder employs a second EIS during
playback to further steady the recorded image.
I suggest that you look through the viewfinder instead of relying on the LCD monitor 'cause you may not be able to see the UFO on the little screen
and you'll have to look for it with your naked eyes and this could cause you to lose the UFO. While looking through the viewfinder, I also open my
free eye to compare views. Your camcorder's autofocusing could also result in "hunting" (focusing in and out and losing the image momentarily) so
if you see this happening, switch to manual focus. My camcorder makes this easy to do as it has a focus ring around the lens, similar in operation to
a single-lens reflex camera, making fine-tuning a snap. With most camcorders this is a difficult task as they employ a small, thumb-operated wheel
which doesn't allow fine tuning.
Now that you have videotaped a UFO and you're sure it's not a balloon or other object, what do you do with the footage? Besides showing it to your
family and friends you can publicize it many ways from Internet sites to the local media. If you decide to cash in on your good fortune, first
acquaint yourself with video rights so that when the time comes you don't make the wrong decision and lose your rights to your footage. The Internet
is a great resource to learn all about rights. If you deal with media, make sure that a dub of your video is done and your original is returned to
you. Better yet, you make the dub and submit that to them. However, if you head straight to a local TV station after shooting the UFO and they're
interested in airing it, do not let them have the videotape before you've reached an agreement over rights. Now, go out there and start staring at