How can I debunk the orbs in this photo?


Senior Member.
What are you trying to debunk? They are just flash photography artifacts. If you'd like to explain them, you can google "orbs", click "images", find similar photos and read the explanations attached.

The unexplainable part would be trying to explain why someone took a pic of a dining room table where none of the candles are centered on the table.


Senior Member.
My sister, having returned from a holiday in Egypt several years ago was excited to show me photos of "orbs" she'd taken in one of the dark unlit chambers of their tour. My initial refutation was to declare them likely out of focus dust particles lit up by the flash but she countered that flash photography was prohibited which kinda stumped me.


Senior Member.
My sister, having returned from a holiday in Egypt several years ago was excited to show me photos of "orbs" she'd taken in one of the dark unlit chambers of their tour. My initial refutation was to declare them likely out of focus dust particles lit up by the flash but she countered that flash photography was prohibited which kinda stumped me.
Can sis email them to you?


Senior Member.
Can sis email them to you?

I imagined this would be asked just after I posted, she's not so good with technology. Was hoping someone would have an off-the-shelf suggestion.
As it was a few years ago, all I can recall was a black photo with a sprinkling of light dust specs.


Well, my "of the shelf" suggestion would be: spotlights illuminating said dust specs.
If the chamber was black, there might be spotlights to light the way for the tourists.
There has just to be a beam of light hitting the dust specs between the chamber and the camera, as the camera is focusing into the room the specs get off-focus, resulting in orbs.
The light might not even have to be too harsh, as the camera sensor try's to adjust for the dark chamber.
- thats what my photography experience tells me.


Senior Member.
For a moment, I thought you'd found the very pictures my sister had shown me @Mick West ! Those look exactly like the orbs she captured except there we no visible people or anything other than darkness (composition is alien to her when it comes to photography :) )

The chamber wasn't unlit?

She didn't volunteer that info neither did I question it at the time (it's pointless trying to convince my sister that woo is woo)

she forgot her flash was on. ? :)

That's another possibility, for sure!


Senior Member.
The most likely one, methinks. Track down those photos! :)

I'm guessing they're "somewhere" and I'll have to be the one to guess where, find them and grab a copy. Don't hold your breath!

I wonder what she was trying to take a photo of, in a dark, unlit chamber, with the flash turned off? ;)

That's her modus operandi, shoot first, ask questions later. Until she can see the results (printed at the store or displayed on a large screen) it's fire and forget all the way!


Senior Member.
OMG I forgot bout my allergies. anyway decided to make my own ghosts... and it worked!

dark room, before beating on the dust filled pillow

after beating on the dust filled pillow


Senior Member.
That bright dot (spot) is found in many videos and photos when the background sun (or a bright reflected light, like a flash) creates internal lens reflections of the actual same source (sun, or flash).
Depending on the camera (cell phone or other cameras)...the sun can create other internal reflections too....
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Senior Member.
Tonight, I just videoed some disco lights from a nearby hotel party, on my Samsung Note 9 phone.
You can see the internal reflections during each disco flash....that look like "orbs".
...but they are simply internal lens reflections.


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Amber Robot

Active Member
Focused ghost of the Sun. Should likely be opposite of center of field and as Mick says will move around as the Sun moves in the frame, always lying opposite of the center of field.

Gary McH-P

After taking a wonderful image of the sea and sunset in North Wales, I was somewhat disappointed that it was spoilt by the green orb at the edge of the surf. Quite a common occurrence on an I-Phone when the sun is in view.

The Sea.jpg
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I was somewhat disappointed that it was spoilt by the green orb at the edge of the surf.

Sometimes we analyse the same or similar photos from different sources with slight variations. Here's an example of how easy it is for orbs to come and go with a few moments in photoshop (attached). This quote also demonstrates one's potential motivation to remove lens flare in the first place.


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