Kirlian photography – the myth revealed!
February 12, 2018

Kirlian photography has been holding several myths for decades now. From claims of supernatural powers to pure science, Kirlian photography has indeed come a long way. So what is Kirlian photography? It is a purely scientific technique of capturing images of corona discharges thereby creating a supernatural halo around living things!
In the year 1939, someone discovered that when an object placed on a photographic plate is connected to a high voltage source, an image gets created on the plate. His name was Semyon Kirlian. Hence came the name Kirlian photography.



How to do Kirlian photography?

Get yourself a metal sheet, page protectors, wires, tapes and neon sign transformer. A digital camera with a long exposure of 10 seconds will do the job for you. Build the discharge plate. It is the piece of metal placed under the insulator. It causes the metal object to try and discharge but it won’t be able to due to the plastic presence involved. Connect the plate with the wires to the transformer. Connect the wire to the positive side of the transformer only when you are taking the photograph. The spark will be made. Setup your camera in such a way that all kinds of movements are avoided. Set your camera’s shutter speed to about 8-10 seconds to capture a long exposure photograph. Turn off the lights of your room and turn on the transformer when you are ready to take the photograph. The spark created will result in a dramatic effect as a halo will be created around your object. That is because you are not taking a normal photograph. You have a very slow shutter speed resulting in a long exposure photograph. 



If you want a bit more of Physics and the reason for this, here it is a piece of it.


The images produced in photographic plates are a result of the high voltage corona effect pretty similar to those found in Tesla coils. In a dark room, it is normally visible as a very faint glow of light but on increasing the voltage drastically, the plate behaves in a slightly abnormal way. Now, a color photographic plate is manufactured to produce all colors when exposed to normal light. The resultant corona discharge starts having its effects on the different dyes used in the manufacturing of a photo film. This results in the production of various colors depending on the intensity of the applied voltage.


If you have serious interest in doing Kirlian photography, readymade Kirlian photography kits are available for purchase. Any digital camera with long shutter speed will do perfectly fine. Make sure the camera can shoot at a shutter speed of 8-12 seconds. Ultimately it is all about the shutter speed of the camera. It is this long shutter speed that actually brings about the halo effect, so vital in Kirlian photography. Do not forget to capture the shots in a pitch dark room. Remember the darker the room is the brighter the halo will be. It is a part of the simple law of contrasts after all!


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