“Pepper’s Ghost” illusion

In this day in age thousands of people are easily deceived with “authentic” ghost videos that spring up on YouTube almost by the minute. The abundant software and hardware that the technological boom has provided only facilitates the hoaxers efforts. Some of us are quick to point out the obvious “Photoshop” or CG editing mistakes, or lack of talent and therefore debunk the claims fairly quickly and efficiently.

What many are not aware of is that even before the digital revolution, there were ways of “manifesting ghosts” out of thin air.

An inventor named Henry Dircks, created the ‘Dircksian Phantasmagoria’. This is a technique that was used to create real-time translucent ghosts on theater stages in the late 1800s. With crafty lighting and glass panes, he was able to reflect the image of an actor portraying the ghost, onto another glass pane on the stage. The effect create a “real” looking ghostly image.

Dircks/Pepper ghostly image

Dircks/Pepper ghostly image

Customizing the idea a bit, John Pepper made it possible for it to be implemented on theaters with much ease. What is popularly known as “Pepper’s Ghost” is one of the oldest ways people have been using to manifest ghostly apparitions.

Check this video out. No video editing was used whatsoever:

The effects remind you of Disney Land’s “Haunted Mansion” ghosts doesn’t it?

Well in a less “flashy” way, this same technique can be used to create ghostly images that looks so real and authentic, that you could easily convert any old building into a haunted building.

So as investigators/researchers, one must always remember that not everything that you see nowadays has been processed digitally. So looking for any digital discrepancies while reviewing evidence might not be 100% accurate. The “Pepper’s Ghost” technique is as effective today, as it once was.

Hey maybe some of you want to create your own neighborhood haunted house. Using this technique would surely make your home standout.