Alter Pictures Without Software or Apps

Alter Pictures Without Software or Apps.
By Andrew Alvarez

As part of the Photography Team for NPS, I look at data held within the file of the photo. We call this exhif data. It contains data such as time, date, how long the exposure was open, if the flash fired, iso settings etc. One key bit of information held in that data is the type of camera used. If no camera is listed, we can often times dismiss it as being altered or not an original file.

We review pictures, and I have personally aside from NPS, that have all the required exhif data in them, model of the camera included. There seems to be no reason this photo shouldn’t be considered an actual example of a paranormal occurrence. There are many things you can do to unknowingly alter your photo. Here are a few:

Movement: Movement does a few things and is probably the biggest culprit. A camera works by allowing light to enter a focal point and rendering it to an image either on film or digitally. The shutter is the device that allows the light in. For low light shots, it’s recommended to have a slower shutter speed and for bright light, a faster speed. The problem is today most cameras have an automatic mode and are usually set on them by default. In situations where the light detected by the sensors can either be low or high, the mechanism has a hard time deciding which way to go. This results in sometimes an even longer shutter time. While that shutter is open, unless the camera is on a tripod, we will likely move, as our bodies do naturally, and cause what’s called motion blur or light streaks in darker environments. For a quality shot to be achieved, the camera must remain perfectly still while the shutter is open.

When we breath, our bodies also move. And can create the same issues

When we move around, as in walking and sitting, we can also disturb dust or bugs which can cause the orb affect.


Dirty Lens : Often time oil from our hands (especially after we eat pizza) or dirt gets on a lens and we may not even know it. If you are using a cell phone, it’s especially difficult as the lens is about the size of an erasure on a pensile. The oil can distort the light coming through the lens and alter the image. Dirt, or other contaminants, can have the same affect. There’s been videos on social media posted with this as an example to create a vignette effect. The photographer smears petroleum jelly on their lens to get that effect.

Blocking the flash: Have you ever taken a picture and saw your finger in it? Well I think we all have. Unknowingly blocking the flash is just as easy. A flash is designed to wash or fill an area with light. Light travels in straight lines though. If part of the light source is blocked, the rest of the light from such a small light source, doesn’t have the chance to fill the area. Instead you are left with shadows or sometimes a person that looks like they may have an entity near them because they are darker than others around them.

These are just three things we come across as a photo analysis team. Learning what causes these and how to prevent them is an important step in our field. When we can eliminate the variables, our samples will be cleaner and scientifically more acceptable. What are some other things you can think of that can alter an image without apps or software?

Andrew Alvarez

Andrew Alvarez

Representative - Division 3 at National Paranormal Society
Hello I'm Andrew Alvarez. I'm 34 years old. My interest in the paranormal started at about 8 years old after an experience that happened when my grandfather passed away. I'm a founder and director of the Paranormal Organization of South TX POST. We formed 7 years ago and have been serving the South Texas area since. I am an ordained Christian Minister and am studying demonology and theology. I also plan on learning the art of exorcism. I have a background in website administration, music performance and production (pre and post), web graphics, and some video production. I look forward to working with NPS in contributing my talents and learning from other's talents.
Andrew Alvarez