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Creature Suit Analysis Part 11 - The next Step


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Creature Suit Analysis Part 11 - Next Step

INTRODUCTION

This whole series on Creature Suit Analysis, as applied to the PG Film, has taken on a form and scale beyond what I ever expected when I made the first post of notes (the Part One thread on Fur) two months ago. So I thought it might be appropriate to share with you all what I have learned, as well as where I aspire to take it from here.

First, I want to say that my experience with this board has been wonderful, I have met some people I truly admire, and developed some friendships I would hope to keep for many years. And I will concede I am still a novice at the whole environment of internet forums, and still learning some of the mechanical procedures, as well as some of the protocols of interaction.

I am also learning about the whole internet forum dynamic as it applies to any research endeavor, and it seems to change the methodology tremendously. I had no idea that notes I post here might be copied and carried over to other forums and debated, and was perhaps naive to not anticipate there may be people intensely opposed to my thoughts, and insulting of me for expressing them. My naivety was recently washed away by some experiences which showed the nature of the internet today. Clusters of what I think could best be described as "gerbels in an alternate reality" have taken an immense interest in my notes and thoughts. Interestingly, my efforts to debate them in their sphere of cynical comfort has actually given a clarity to my ideas and intentions.

In a way, the hassle of having to spend time defending one's actions against the misunderstanding of others is something we prefer to avoid, but I have been a teacher for many years and long ago learned that there are no "stupid" questions (although I will allow there are many "stupid people asking questions"). So I took this experience as a way to allow my ideas to be subjected to an array of questioning I never otherwise would have encountered, and tried to gleen from it the questions which actually did challenge me to refine and re-evaluate my position, my goals, and my reasoning.

Interestingly, one of those questions was a challenge to the very methodology of my notes, my intentions, and tradition. So let me offer this brief summary of "this is how it happened, and why it is today what it is" description.

I was curious about finding a bigfoot image on the net, so I did a google image search. One link lead me to the BFF, and a Chris Walas thread. I'd never seen a web forum before (honestly) and so I was curious. I read the thread and found it interesting, and some of the people seemed quite nice and knowledgable to me.

So I joined the forum, and thought "I have some ideas I'd like to run by these people", and maybe with my knowledge of suits, maybe I can contribute to their understanding, because they do talk about it. So I wrote a few notes and put them up. They have been well received. So I have continued to put up a few more.

As it progressed, I began to think about how a research program might help clear up things so the discussion could really have some hard, testable data to bring to the PG Film issue. So I didn't even think I was going to do a research program until after I started posting notes and seeing others contribute comments and information. And some researchers here helped me to understand what the possibilities are for doing such research.

Nothing was planned then, no grand strategy, and there wasn't a plan for a research study before the notes were started. So, once I discovered there were critics on other internet sites, criticizing practically enerything I said or did, I thought about how a scientific method may exist in the internet age, if information is shared through public forums. Every researcher can choose:

A. to keep his/her work secretive until published,

B. or share data and preliminary findings with a tight group of peers,

C. or widen the sphere of peer participation to a larger chosen group,

D. or just "let it all hang out" and put it in a forum where anyone can potentially view and comment.

Well, unintentionally (given my inexperience with forums), I have started on that last option, putting research notes and ideas out in a public forum, where anybody can view and comment. And while I would never start another research endeavor this way, I have chosen to continue this one in that manner, as an experiment in and of itself, aside from the PGfilm-suit issues and research.

So I decided to keep studying the PG Film suit controversy in this public forum, and if this methodology is a novel research method, so be it. And I've chosen to do another study, of the internet reaction or impact on this research, documenting public comment and criticism, understanding and misconception. The second program, however, will be a private study I may share with a few chosen peers, until it's time to present a conclusion. It's database will be composed of public forum comments and discussions of the first study as it progresses, drawn from any sites where the notes are discussed

So, that said, here is where the PG Film research plan stands. And I readily concede that my methods are quite informal, relaxed, and leave room for evolution of thought. I may, as time goes by, reformulate the hypothesis as the data comes in, my prerogative since this is my research program.

The issue of the hypothesis has been confused with the motive of the research. It seems some people have misconstrued that, because I am here on this forum, I must be trying to prove Patty (or Bigfoot, in general) is real. Actualy, I'm not. Many fine researchers are doing work along that line, and I have chosen to observe with fascination as they continue. What I'm trying to do, is simply understand what's in the PG Film. That's my true motive. It mystifies me. I sure wish I could find an answer. Maybe it's a long shot, and there sure are plenty of people who say the film has insufficient data to even lead to a conclusive determination. Maybe. I don't know yet. I like to think there is some potential to bring new data to the issue, and new data could conceivably lead to a conclusion. That's my motive: to try and understand what's really in that film.

FOCUSING MY HYPOTHESIS

In any researcher's mind, there may come a time where you wonder about something. It piques your curiosity. If you are inclined to research it to know more, you may find yourself forming a research plan or direction. This is classically called a hypothesis, the question asked, so to speak, which the research aspires to answer. My hypothesis has been refined by this public debate, and now I feel confident to state it formally.

My hypothesis is: Can a study of the materials, methods and technologies of creature suit costume fabrication, as known and used in 1967, be applied to determining if the figure in the PG Film is a suit or costume fabricated from such 1967 materials and technologies? If so, what determination can be made?

I also intend to go through each set of notes, and all the comments added, to sort of distill from the comments and additions of note, and ommissions, any matters apparently misunderstood, as a sort of review analysis, to help others looking through the thread to find a summary of the activity. I'll probably do one thread each week this way, in numerical order, presumably.

ISSUES IN AND OUT OF CONTENTION

My first step is to qualify, both for myself and for any interested contributors, what isssues about the PG Film I intend to study, and which issues I feel will not have any application to my hypothesis and will be excluded from my study.

Allow me to first exclude the issues I do not intend to research in this study:

1. Any question about the integrity of any known participants of the filming, or any question of either identitiy or integrity of rumored or claimed participants of the filming.

2. Any question about the circumstances of the filming, except issues of sunlight position/time of day/year, as may relate to a replication of filming under similar sunlight angle/direction. I am excluding all issues of footprints on site and the subsequent track castings.

3. Any issues of bipedal locomotion, the "compliant gait", as I believe it is called, and the human potential to perform such.

Additionally, my preliminary studies and notes posted have allowed me to exclude some issues about the figure which I have already determined sufficently that no further study is needed on my part, and issues where it may be equally argued for a suit or a real creature in the film. Those issues are:

4. The shape of the feet in the film, and the whitish coloration of them, since everything seen can be fabricated, satisfying my material study.

5. The issue of the breasts on the figure, since everything about their form and any perceived motion can be fabricated, satisfying my materail study.

6. The possibility of a human being capable of physically inhabiting the figure body, because a study has determined it is possible, satisfying the prospect in the hypothesis.

7. All issue of such bodily motions such as hands or fingers bending, or mouths opening are excluded, because all could be accomplished with technology of the time, satisfying my material study.

Issues still in contention are:

1. the surface material on the body, to see there may be any other explanation besides a fur material.

2. the length and density of fur (assuming #1 does not discount it)

3. the capacity of furcloth (or tanned hides of real animal fur) to move as the film figure's fur surface appears to in the film, and it's converse, the restrictions of a furcloth material's inherent physical dynamics which may cause folds or contours specifically not exhibited in the film.

4. the issue of tailoring seams, closure seams, and whether or not the film resolution allows their detection if present.

5. the distinction between which light/dark tonality patterns can be attributed to the figure's body, which may be attributed to the fur on the body, and which may be attributed to simple artifacts of light and film grain.

Others may be added as we go along.

RESEARCH GOALS

The first goal is what I will refer to as a Callibration Study.

Callibration of film data extraction potential - this is something I believe is critical, and may bring very useful data to the study. We look at the PG Film and try to extract data from it, but we acknowledge the combination of film size, size of figure in the frame, the hand held filming, and the duplication of the film before scanned prints were made, all contribute to losses of visual quality and detail. And we lack any much higher resolution film of the same subject, same event, to actually know what was lost, other than the vague generalization "detail".

So one of my goals, perhaps the primary one, actually, is to set up a study whereby a variety of films are made, of live mammals with varying types of fur, and artificial fur mediums of varying types, filmed with a 16mm film camera, prime lens, and sufficient distance from subject that the subject being filmed will appear in the film frame of approximate size corresponding to the size of the PG Film figure. Simultaniously, a HD Video camera would be zoomed in on the subject, with both cameras on a single tripod mounting, side by side. Some consideration for causing motion of the film camera to replicate the motions of a hand held camera need to be established as well. This would be done is sunlight, at an angle/time of day proximating the original filming. The film then will be duped twice, and then scanned to digital prints for study.

From the film scanned prints, comparisons will be made along three methods. One is to study known specific elements of the actual filmed subject (let us say for example, a furcloth section with a seam clearly in view) and see if in the scanned film version at much lower resolution, that seam is still determinable. This allows us to confirm how much detail is lost. We film existant and identifiable details on the HD Video, and then compare the low res film scans to catalogue the degree of loss.

The second is to look for similarities and differences in the light/dark patterns of the PG Film in relation to the new film at similar low resolution and high grain evidence, to find what aspects of the new low resolution filming have similar patterns of grain and light dark tonality. Portions of the new filming which have no similarity to the patterns in the PG Film will allow us to go back to the high resolution reference and dismiss the fur qualities of those filmed subjects, thus eliminating some fur materials as a potential match. And patterns of general similarity will allow the fur types to remain as prospects for further study.

Third is to look for detail artifacts which may be reported to have been found in the PG film and see if similar artifacts can be found in the low res study films. Let us take for example, a suggestion that something in the PG Film analysis indicated a patch of braided hair. And let us say, as a hypothetical example, that filming a male lion's mane is studied and a similar image artifiact in the new low res filming of the lion's mane reveals an identical artifact. By referencing back to the HD Video closeup of the lion, in the exact same frame, we can see what actual hair structure in the lion's mane caused the artifact tending to resemble a braid in the low res form on film. Presumably the lion's mane isn't actually braided (unless a zookeeper has a sense of humor), and we can discount the idea of a braid in the PG Film.(we can of course, film braids to see what they look like at very low res, for cross reference.)

In total, this method would allow us to have distinguishable fur/skin surfaces and textures, in both very high resolution and very low film resolution versions, and thus we have ways to both ask,

1. what we know to exist, how would it appear in low res film?

2. and what we see in the low res PG film, what high res actual fur substance and form can match it, when similarly reduced to low res form?

This callibration study, as I call it, I believe has strong potential to aid us in trying to determine how much detail can be derived from the PG Film, and how much verifiable detail can be referenced to what is in the PG Film.

Derived from that may be studies of:

Tests of fur/hair mediums

Tests of furcloth motion potential

Tests of seam detection

Tests of hair bristling

Tests of known suits reduced to similar grain/image ratio

That stated, I am now formulating the filming specifications, and here, I welcome the contribution of others. My assumption is the film stock to be used is Kodak Ectachrome 7285 reversal stock. But I have not yet located data on it's grain resolution, as compared to the grain resolution of the film stock actually used for the PG Film. If the film of today has a finer grain, and greater capacity to resolve detail, then It would seem logical to me that I must reposition the filmed figure somewhat in proportion to the film grain, so the closest subject to grain ratio is replicated.

So a comparaive reference of grain structure and resolution needs to be determined.

Also I have a question about the prime lens resolution, as a factor, because if the prime lens resolution is less than the film (hypothetical here), than the lens resolution is the determinant, and if that is constant (same lens used to do new filming), then the issue of higher film resolution seems a moot point. I welcome contributions from persons familiar with the subject.

I'm sure I could find this information eventually myself, but if any interested persons with knowledge of the matter have the information readily available, I would welcome the assistance, and have one more item checked off my very long "Things to do" list.

ILLUSTRATING THE CONCEPT

I've attached three charts illustrating the concept.

The first shows a mock-up representation of a HD Video camera and an old 16 mm film camera mounted together on one tripod, and both aimed at the same subject. The Video camera, however, would be zoomed in for a full frame view of the subject, while the movie camera would use a prime lens and have the subject positioned in frame approximating the size the PG Film figure is, in its frames.

Subjects would be filmed simultaniously from both cameras, with a visual start/stop marker in front of both lenses to help callibrate the frames, one to the other (video to film).

Disclaimer: I couldn't find a picture of the 16mm camera from the correct view to be pointing the right way for this illustration, so I altered the camera image simply to represent the concept better. The real camera looks different.

The second chart shows a representation of what the footage from each camera might look like, for reference.

The third chart shows the actual study methodology of looking for details in HD lost to the film, as well as looking to shapes in the film and referencing back to the HD video to see what that light/shadow formation actually is.

This third image chart shows a gorilla photo (upper left), and a low resolution variation of it (upper right), as an example of how it might look on film as described above. Please note this is merely an illustrative example, done in Photoshop. The actual tests cannot be done in Photoshop, because to do this, I had to take the original photo, apply a "Film Grain" filter, then apply a "Gaussien Blur" filter, and then again the grain and then again the blur, four alterations total. But for each alteration, each filter applied, I made a judgment of how much filter to apply. This introduces human judgment into the alteration, and it ceases to be empirical, impartial. Using actual film stock, and allowing the actual grain structure and resolution to impose their arbitrary alteration of the image, removes any human judgment from the low res image result, and thus is more impartially reliable, as well as more testable by others who may want to duplicate the experiment. So consider the chart herein as merely an illustration of the concept.

On that chart, top right, is the high resolution image of a gorilla, as we would get from the HD Video camera. Top right is a Photoshopped suggestion of what a low resolution film image may look like. Below left has red lines marking details in the actual animal's appearance which were lost in the low res version. Below right are areas marked in blue where light dark patterns have been accentuated far beyond the original animal's body contours suggest in HD viewing. (so we see, in red, things lost, while in blue, we see things intensified to the point we may misconstrue what we are seeing.

By being able to reference back to the original animal image in HD detail, we can more reliably see what is lost and what is exhaggerated or over-emphasized.

Gorilla photo courtesy of Colobus.

So the plan, for now, is to set up this system of filming various subjects and materials in the manner to callibrate the loss of detail and catalogue exhaggerations of contour and substance.

Thoughts, opinions, and suggestions are welcome.

Hoping the charts format correctly this time.

Bill

added:

Apparently I haven't found the formula for getting images one below the other. Apologies if you have to scroll acros the screen.

I tried SHIFT to drop each attachment to the next line, didn't work.

Edited by Bill
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Bill: I sure hope you're having a good time doing this, because I and many others are. Totally engrossing and I'm learning a ton about stuff I barely cared much about...and not just this film. cheers!

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bipedalist
BFF Patron

Bill I praise you for your concept development. Only concern I have is one of tree canopy, are you going to totally eliminate that variable? I'm not even sure in that

stream channel to what extent it might have come into play but I'm only just questioning.....if it did, would you totally avoid that element, or try to replicate the filming in an area where it might come into play? Spectacular hypothesis btw

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Guest Apeman
Apparently I haven't found the formula for getting images one below the other. Apologies if you have to scroll acros the screen.

I tried SHIFT to drop each attachment to the next line, didn't work.

I think a simple 'return/enter', or maybe two to create a blank line, will do it?

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Dogu4

yeah, I'm enjoying this whole adventure. Gald you find it worth the effort as well.

Bipedalist:

by tree canopy, do you mean the prospect of shadows on the PG body caused by sunlight through some sparce folliage?

If so, I hadn't, but will look into a ay to factor that in.

Interesting suggestion.

Apeman:

I tried the "return button", tried adding text after I had uploaded the attachment, etc.

Still can't figure out how to get an image into text instead of always at the bottom. Went through all the board's "help" tutorials, etc, thread on posting pictures, the works, still no simple "how-to"

I found an "insert image" button along the near top, with the text options (like Bold", etc. and so I'm wondering if I hit that in the middle of text, upload and image, and keep going?

Sadly, i can't pull this thread down now and try over, and don't know where I can go to experiment with posting thread procedures and not waste everybody's time putting a "learning thread" in this section.

So, again, apologies to all for the failure to get the formatting right.

Bill

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Guest Apeman
6. The possibility of a human being capable of physically inhabiting the figure body, because a study has determined it is possible, satisfying the prospect in the hypothesis.

What study are you referring to here? I ask because I generally (but not definitively) disagree and think this is one of the most important aspects of the film. I can understand you ignoring this factor for the convenience of sticking with your hypothesis, but I'm curious why you think it's been categorically ruled out? Or am I misreading something?

-A

PS- I always use the attachment box below the text box rather than the insert picture and have no problem arranging images that way. But yours appear fine so this really isn't a big deal.

Edited by Apeman
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Guest Crowlogic

Bill this is superb! Its the very thing that has needed to be done from the very beginning of the PGF. The issue of what the film in the version as it is available can actually show has never been attempted. Virtually every attempt to either duplicate it or duplicate what's on it has either been woefully poor or downright laughable as in the case of Phillip Morris and the suit recreation video.

I think your idea of actually running 16mm film under identical lighting conditions then using second generation copies as the working medium is the way to go. But perhaps it may be possible to take the second generation working copy in the other direction as well. That is to have the working copy enhanced as a means to determine just how well the existing available PGF 16mm reels may one day be enhanced. I've felt for a long time that the first generation PGF if run through a NASA style enhancement would produce spectacular results. In the meantime looking forward to your progress.

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Apeman:

The study i was referring to was my own Part 6 thread, on putting the Poser figure into a Patty shape.

It just seemed close enough that I felt it was no longer an issue for me. Certainly others can continue to study or debate this aspect.

In other words, I would not expect any more effort on my part to prove to any certainty that a human can't fit into the figure. So I just set it aside for now, as i give priority to other issues.

Bill

added:

Crow;

Actually I've been thinking of something what you suggested, to use the low res film I get and subject it to the same image enhancement technologies being employed now, to see what details can be brought out, and then use the HD video as the "control" reference".

That what you ment?

Bill

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bipedalist
BFF Patron

quote: Bipedalist:

by tree canopy, do you mean the prospect of shadows on the PG body caused by sunlight through some sparce folliage?

If so, I hadn't, but will look into factor that in. unquote

Yes, Bill right after I sent that I realized it was mostly flooded out stream bed and log jams except for scrub

and shrub, occasional tree shadows, so that would be a more appropriate shadow field rather than partial tree

canopy, I would have to review the film again to know to what degree though. I was thinking that just going out and

filming in a field may not be the best control.

Edited by bipedalist
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The following is a thought that came to me in consideration of some questions (and I wanted to acknowledge the discussion of these notes is occuring on several internet locations), specifically in regard to my exclusions, the five points I said I had already decided warranted no further study on my part. Those were, 1. feet, 2. breasts, 3. a person fitting in the Patty figure, 4. the walk "the compliant gait", and 5. motions of hands and mouths.

It was brought up that these issues are of considerable concern to proponents of the PG Film as real, and that my dismissal of these issues might upset or anger proponents.

So I thought it might be well to clarify that there is an important distinction between my study and larger research studies. Allow me to use the feet as the best example. I am simply looking at the film, and asking the question, "Can what I see about the feet have been created with suit technology of the time?" My answer is, absolutely, yes, in terms of what I see on film. So for me, the issue of the feet is settled.

But this is different than someone asking "are the feet real?" because a person researching this will most likely consider the footprints on the scene and the agruments of whether the technology of the time could fake the prints while the figure walked through the scene, or something like that. This research question is actually different than mine, and incorporates data and issues I am not, so while the foot issue is settled, relative to my specific hypothesis, it may not be settled in other research studies and debates.

I felt this disclaimer was important, because I've been seeing some people take portions of my notes out of context and tried to use them to advance arguments I actually am not making.

So, for clarity, while the five noted items are no longer in my research agenda, my setting them aside does not mean the whole issue is set aside. Other reserchers, with different hypothesis and focus in their research, may still feel the five noted elements are still in contention for study and potential conclusion. So, please do not take my postion of proof of some other hypothesis in this research.

Thank you.

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Incorrigible1

Bill, from my studies of the movie "Life of Brian," I've determined Patty's breasts cannot be real.

OK, just kidding. This stems from reading some brilliant effete snob's posting on another forum.

Hopefully, Bill will admonish me with the same advice, that is to observe more female breasts!

Edited by Incorrigible1
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Guest Remember November

Bill:

never thought about objects being accentuated on film the way you have shown. Would this distortion be consistent in each frame?

Also, you agree that Patty's arms are longer than a proportionate human and based on your "quick patty hand question" post you must agree that the fingers and wrists move, do you feel that Patty's hands are a prosthetic? If so would this be nessascary given the distance Roger filmed the subject? Did prosthetics of this kind exist in 67?

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RN:

"Bill:

never thought about objects being accentuated on film the way you have shown. Would this distortion be consistent in each frame?

Actually, I won't know this until I actually film things. I sort of expect some change as there is some motion, but I'm really not sure exactly what, and the study will hopefully give me something more to look at and evaluate.

Also, you agree that Patty's arms are longer than a proportionate human and based on your "quick patty hand question" post you must agree that the fingers and wrists move, do you feel that Patty's hands are a prosthetic? If so would this be nessascary given the distance Roger filmed the subject? Did prosthetics of this kind exist in 67? "

Going bach to Part 6, the figure study, if you put a guy inside "Patty" and he has normal height to armspan of 100%, then he would need arm extensions of maybe 6-8 inches. If, on the other hand, you hired a guy with an armspan of 112% to 115% of his height, his own arms and hands could fit Patty without any extensions.

I just don't know if his knees would line up correctly.

If you choose Guy #1 (normal arms), yes, arm extensions of the time may have been made, Arm extensions are a sort of puppetry, really, and that's been around far longer than the PGF.

So the arm extension issue sort of rests with who you try to put inside Patty. But purely from a biological point, some people have long enough arms to qualify. The thread has some basketball player statistics verifying this.

Bill

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