Calvine UFO Photo - Reflection In Water Hypothesis

JFDee

Senior Member.
I don't buy the reflection theory one bit.. Also, why would the MoD keep a photo of a reflection hidden for 30 years, and even more, the ID of the persons is secret for the next 50 years. Or is that all a big lie/hoax (I don't know what to trust these days anymore).

It can well be a 'little' lie - two guys hoaxing the local newspaper. The MoD was involved only when the newspaper contacted them and asked for comment, thereby making it 'official'.

calvin_mod.png
 

Ravi

Senior Member.
Thanks @Charlie Wiser and @JFDee for the info. I did not know there is no direct governmental link or block to the pictures. So that changes my understanding of it all quite a bit. A hoax cannot be excluded.
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
Here is another version of water reflection hypothesis.
1.The plane was actually flying from left to right (A)
2.An image of small rock in the loch reflected as a UFO (B).
3.Picture(B) was clockwise turned 180°, resulting the Calvine UFO photo.
No flipping needed, question of upside down flying plane solved.

In addition, to shoot a “water reflecting” photo, a small pond or even just small area of wet surface is sufficient if the shooting angle and framing is right

I think it may be an illusion that the plane is flying upside down when the image is not rotated.

I agree to this theory which involves the specific properties of a Harrier's tail (the plane, not the bird :cool:).

Source: https://twitter.com/Oswald1160/status/1558431042050072579
 

Easy Muffin

Senior Member
What different objects? The stuff on the right seems to be vegetation on the bank. Other than that, all I see are vague lines. Andrew Robinson sees hills and trees but it's not at all clear. Could even be dirt on the print. Robinson's close-up:
That's what I see, too. Trees and some ridges. There's even what seems to be a fainter second line of hills or mountains behind the first one. Seems too distinct to be random splotches imo.

BTW, the cloud looks decidedly upside down too in the contrast enhanced mirrored version. Normally you'd expect them to be darker at the bottom and that's what can be seen in the original picture as well. If it were a reflection, the darker parts would have to be at the top.
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
I think it may be an illusion that the plane is flying upside down when the image is not rotated.

I agree to this theory which involves the specific properties of a Harrier's tail (the plane, not the bird :cool:).

Stealing the images from the linked tweet - wouldn't you say this plane is upright and banking left?

FaCosbGWAAAjXVg.png
 

Charlie Wiser

Active Member
BTW, the cloud looks decidedly upside down too in the contrast enhanced mirrored version. Normally you'd expect them to be darker at the bottom and that's what can be seen in the original picture as well. If it were a reflection, the darker parts would have to be at the top.
Even at 9PM?
 

Vee7

New Member
For those still asking "shouldn't X be upside down if it's a reflection?", I think you're still misunderstanding. Here's an illustration of how the photo could be taken. After it's shot, just rotate the final photo 180, to put the fence at the bottom, and everything will be the correct way up, with the plane, fence, tree etc. facing the correct way.
 

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Charlie Wiser

Active Member
For those still asking "shouldn't X be upside down if it's a reflection?", I think you're still misunderstanding. Here's an illustration of how it would the photo could be taken. After it's shot, just rotate the final photo 180, to put the fence at the bottom, and everything will be the correct way up, with the plane facing the correct way etc.
If I'm understanding you - the objection to this was that the rock's reflection is lighter than the rock, whereas it should be darker.
 

Easy Muffin

Senior Member
Even at 9PM?
Up in Scotland in early August that's still about 30 minutes before sunset if that's what you're getting at.

I reckon the scene looked like a more overcast version of something like these
c.jpg
d.jpg

Comparing the enhanced photo in https://www.metabunk.org/threads/calvine-ufo-photo-reflection-in-water-hypothesis.12572/post-276345 to these - does that one look more like the clouds in the top part or more like the reflection in the bottom? I'd say the former.
 

Vee7

New Member
If I'm understanding you - the objection to this was that the rock's reflection is lighter than the rock, whereas it should be darker.

Possibly. I'm only making the point that the complaints about the geometry being incorrect are unfounded. As for the colours of the rock and its reflection, I think some experiments need to be done.
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
For those still asking "shouldn't X be upside down if it's a reflection?", I think you're still misunderstanding. Here's an illustration of how the photo could be taken. After it's shot, just rotate the final photo 180, to put the fence at the bottom, and everything will be the correct way up, with the plane, fence, tree etc. facing the correct way.

However, that process would not agree with the perspective of the fence posts. Perspective would demant that they converge in their "up"direction. Instead, they converge toward their "down" direction.

I still think that the reflection photo doesn't even require a rotation.
 

Vee7

New Member
However, that process would not agree with the perspective of the fence posts. Perspective would demant that they converge in their "up"direction. Instead, they converge toward their "down" direction.

I still think that the reflection photo doesn't even require a rotation.

I don't think that's right. The posts are not uniformly arranged so pretty much any orientation is possible if they're just posts sticking out of the ground. But also, imagine sticking matchsticks at the top of your phone, pointing perpendicular to the phone's face. Then look at the reflection in the phone screen. They will bend outwards, away from the centre of the phone, the further you get away from the centre.
 

Vee7

New Member
Because the reflection is usually not total (unless seen at a very low angle) so there is a loss of light.
The part that would be the reflection, if it is a reflection, in the calvine photo, would be an overlay of two reflections: the rock and the sky. Assuming it's a reasonably bright sky, the reflection would be lighter than the rock.
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
The part that would be the reflection, if it is a reflection, in the calvine photo, would be an overlay of two reflections: the rock and the sky. Assuming it's a reasonably bright sky, the reflection would be lighter than the rock.

I don't think that's right. There is just one reflection from the object.
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
I don't think that's right. The posts are not uniformly arranged so pretty much any orientation is possible if they're just posts sticking out of the ground. But also, imagine sticking matchsticks at the top of your phone, pointing perpendicular to the phone's face. Then look at the reflection in the phone screen. They will bend outwards, away from the centre of the phone, the further you get away from the centre.

The matchsticks in the reflection would not bend outwards. They would 'bend' (converge towards) inwards, to an imagined vantage point in the distance.

OK, but let's turn this around (no pun intended) - what would require the photo to be rotated? Why would it have to be?
 

Vee7

New Member
I don't think that's right. There is just one reflection from the object.
Sorry you're right. It's early morning for me, I'd confused myself there. I'm still not completely convinced one way or the other about what the colour of the reflection would be compared to the rock.
 

Ann K

Senior Member.
My twopenneth against reflection:

1. It doesn't look like a reflection
2. The "rock" isn't close to perfectly mirrored
3. A barb wire fence directly next to a loch (or even a pond) seems unlikely
I can't answer number one, but as for the second, three-dimensional objects don't make perfect mirror images. The reflection is a picture of the object as seen from the surface of the water, and the object is seen from the position of the observer. Look at a three-d object below your eyes, then move it up to your eye level, and you will not see the same aspect.

Many reservoirs are fenced to keep people out. In Scotland it's more likely to be sheep than people. And we don't have any visual clues that it was "directly next" to the water. It may be up above the loch at a considerable distance, and possibly fenced to keep animals from falling off a cliff. A good many lochs have terrains much like the Finger Lakes in New York, in that they're long deep gashes in a hilly landscapes.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member


Some observations on the above

  1. The contrast of the reflected image is low because my pool (like most pools) has a light blue interior. If it were dark, then it would be much higher contrast. Puddles, ponds, etc, generally have dark bottoms.
  2. It out of focus, but I'm just using an iPhone. Using an SLR with small aperture (like f/22) removes this issue.
  3. The "centerline" is not horizontal. But this is a small pyramid with a corner facing me. If a face were facing me it would be different.
  4. There's a little nub on the side, likely from surface tension. More apparent in other examples.
  5. The "top" is darker than the bottom. This seems like a substantial objection.
 

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JFDee

Senior Member.
Sorry you're right. It's early morning for me, I'd confused myself there. I'm still not completely convinced one way or the other about what the colour of the reflection would be compared to the rock.

I know these are 'anecdotes', but if you search for water reflection photos, the reflection is almost always darker than the original.

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Ann K

Senior Member.
There appears to be quite a bit of misunderstanding about reflections. The photographer sees an object, but the reflection is "what the water sees". Here's a quickie diagram to explain. Three-dimensional objects don't give mirror images, and if the "peak" of the object is not visible from the water, it isn't seen in the reflection.
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JFDee

Senior Member.
The matchsticks in the reflection would not bend outwards. They would 'bend' (converge towards) inwards, to an imagined vantage point in the distance.

Didn't have a mirror at hand, so took a glass fram with a dark inlay.

The reflected fence posts would converge like these hot glue cartridges. What we see in the Calvine photo looks more like the unreflected part here.

fence_post_demo.jpg
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
what would require the photo to be rotated? Why would it have to be?
because the rock doesnt look right.
The "top" is darker than the bottom. This seems like a substantial objection.
the top of the nub? is darker? i think the top nub is only darker because its darker in real life due to shadow, a rock in the pond is different. do you have a piece of styrofoam you can float on the pool water surface?

edit add: sorry @Mick West just realized by nub you probably meant these bits, thought you meant the diamond was a nub on top of the jar.
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Vee7

New Member
Didn't have a mirror at hand, so took a glass fram with a dark inlay.

The reflected fence posts would converge like these hot glue cartridges. What we see in the Calvine photo looks more like the unreflected part here.

fence_post_demo.jpg
That's right. I'm getting everything backwards this morning. Again we don't know what the actual posts look like though so I think it's still up in the air.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
There appears to be quite a bit of misunderstanding about reflections. The photographer sees an object, but the reflection is "what the water sees". Here's a quickie diagram to explain. Three-dimensional objects don't give mirror images, and if the "peak" of the object is not visible from the water, it isn't seen in the reflection.

I like to think of it as the mirror surface being a portal to a mirrored universe, and so the reflection can be though of as the mirror-phototgrapher looking back into the real world.

I know this analogy does not work for everyone. But essentially the viewpoint of the reflection is underwater.

2022-08-13_07-48-02.jpg
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
The reflected fence posts would converge like these hot glue cartridges. What we see in the Calvine photo looks more like the unreflected part here.
Thay type of fence rarely has parallel posts. So I don't think you can read too much into the angles
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
Thay type of fence rarely has parallel posts. So I don't think you can read too much into the angles

The photos from the location I've seen so far have most fence posts rather orderly and straight.
And even if they were a bit crooked and outward-pointing, the reflection would counter that instead of amplifying it.

So I'm not convinced that we can dismiss this point.
 

Charlie Wiser

Active Member
Thay type of fence rarely has parallel posts. So I don't think you can read too much into the angles
Wider shots of fences in the area do show posts at all kinds of angles.

There may also be a visual illusion happening because of this bit of rope or whatever it is - it's not a fence post. I think the post is hidden behind the bush and its angle is unknown. The rope is slanting but that could be because of the way it's caught up in the wires, not because it's vertical/diverging.

Blue arrows are the same length to show approx or possible location of the left post (although, again, this fencing has unevenly spaced posts).converging posts.jpg
 

Charlie Wiser

Active Member
The photos from the location I've seen so far have most fence posts rather orderly and straight.
And even if they were a bit crooked and outward-pointing, the reflection would counter that instead of amplifying it.

So I'm not convinced that we can dismiss this point.
The posts in photos from the location proposed by David Clarke et al are crooked, and the local investigator says the fencing "isn't replaced really" and some is 150 years old (exaggeration?). We don't have a water location to check any fences there but there's no particular reason to think (if it's a hoax reflection) the photo was taken anywhere near the time or place claimed.

crooked.jpg
 

JFDee

Senior Member.
Wider shots of fences in the area do show posts at all kinds of angles.

There may also be a visual illusion happening because of this bit of rope or whatever it is - it's not a fence post. I think the post is hidden behind the bush and its angle is unknown. The rope is slanting but that could be because of the way it's caught up in the wires, not because it's vertical/diverging.

Blue arrows are the same length to show approx or possible location of the left post (although, again, this fencing has unevenly spaced posts).converging posts.jpg

If the fence posts were so far leaning apart in the reflection which is supposed to make them converge, then they'd be close to falling over. That weakens the rotation hypothesis.

Anyway, my underlying point is still that there is no requirement and no indication for the photo to be rotated. The reflection works either way.
 

Charlie Wiser

Active Member
If the fence posts were so far leaning apart in the reflection which is supposed to make them converge, then they'd be close to falling over. That weakens the rotation hypothesis.

Anyway, my underlying point is still that there is no requirement and no indication for the photo to be rotated. The reflection works either way.
I don't think the photo is rotated or that the fence is a reflection.
 

Charlie Wiser

Active Member
Do you think anything is a reflection? If so, then the fence has to be between the water and the camera, which would seem to make things a bit more complicated.
Right now I'm thinking the rock and plane are the only reflections. The strike against is the plane is (apparently) right-way up instead of upside down but I can't really tell. I don't think the pic is rotated because it makes the vegetation look wrong. I think the rock might be bigger and further away than these ripples make it seem - how to tell? I don't know how to interpret the clouds.

This image just looks "right" to me.

Reflection rock in pond.jpg
 
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