UFO Spotting & Recording Tips
Photographing UFOS
UFO Video--You Could Get Your Own!
It's getting easier and easier to obtain UFO video almost anywhere in the world, and we recommend that you keep a small video camera & extra tapes handy.
Although it is being completely ignored by the Mass Media , there is a very extensive UFO wave taking place worldwide at this time.
If you watch the skies and make an effort to get video, you might well find the visitors showing up.

Got a camera? There are lots of good models at pretty reasonable prices, so consider getting one.
Go to UFOTheatre.com here.
© Copyright 2000-2005 UUFOH
How to see UFO's.

If you have never seen a UFO, than by following these instructions you will get to see one.
Once you get the idea of the procedures and 'indicators' that I will explain, you will have no trouble following the return of the UFO when in your location next time.

8 Introduction:
There is some background knowledge you should be aware of first. The UFOs are not around all the time. So do not expect to just walk outside, look up and see one. It does not work like that (unfortunately). The UFO visits in what are known as 'Waves' and 'Flaps'. This is the time when you will see them.

8 UFO 'Waves'.
A UFO 'wave' is when a small number of UFO's are flying over your location over a period of time. The sighting of UFO's during the 'wave' situation is spasmodic to regular. This period of 'wave' activity may last for 2-3 days or several months at a time. The idea is to become aware of the first sign of UFO activity so that you can observe them during this time until the end of the 'wave' period.
Remember, that when one UFO is around, there are most probably more to be seen. So if you see one, keep looking. This is what happens during UFO activity.
At the beginning of a 'wave', you will see what we call 'indicators'. These will be discussed below.
A 'wave' of UFO activity will usually build up in sighting numbers to a peak, then recede until no more are seen. You will then be back to 'normal' or no UFO activity. The peak of UFO activity during a 'wave' is less then the activity seen during a UFO 'Flap' situation.

8 UFO 'Flaps'.
A UFO 'flap' is a large number of UFO's over a location for a short period of time.
UFO 'flaps' are the most interesting and rewarding if you have one over your location. Unlike 'waves', UFO 'flaps' usually begin with full-on UFO activity without seeing the 'indicators'. There is no guarantee that each 'flap' situation will be the same in all cases, and are impossible to compare with previous 'flaps' because each 'flap' event is unique in the type of objects that will be seen, the number of objects in the event and the type of formations and groups they will be seen in.
UFO 'flaps' usually consist of the UFO Disc & the Black Triangle. The discs vary in size from less then 1 metre (2.5 feet) to 100+ feet in some reports from around the world. The discs I have seen were around 3 metre's (10ft) dia. However some of the high altitude ones could have been larger.
The Black Triangles are usually huge, silent, and move effortlessly. Often seen moving too slowly to stay in the air using convention al technology, but able to move at great speeds as well
A 'flap' can contain a wide variety of UFO shapes and sized objects and craft. Boomerang Formations of various number of objects, Boomerang Craft, Triangle Craft, individual Discs and Groups of Discs. And UFO's of a wide range of size and shape. This is the mystery of "What are UFO's".
'Flaps' may last 1-3 days. Usually not lasting for any great length of time. 'Flaps' may then reduce to the 'wave' situation and last months or years. Years? If we look at the major UFO activity years, you will notice the peak periods for world wide UFO activity during the decades of the 1950's, 1970's and the 1990's. Can we expect another world wide influx of UFO's in major 'flaps' in 2009? It is highly probable. There are periods of time between these dates where there is still UFO activity, but not on the general scale of continuous UFO activity during these decades. Each of these decades produced high incidence of UFO 'flaps' world wide. Between these decades, 'flaps' were more localized to various countries, not so much spread around the world. More like 'wave' activity of various intensities.

8 Skywatching.
There are two main ways you can become aware of increased UFO activity. You can monitor this site ataliendave.com for Utah sightings, various UFO email lists or UFO sighting report centers or you can become aware of UFO activity in your location by you own observations. And this is what this is all about. You personally becoming aware of the UFO activity over your location. You will get the knowledge first, and see with your own eyes what is happening. You will be on the 'front line' as it were. And skywatching is the ONLY way you can do this with any real success.
You can skywatch from your own backyard or roof top if in an apartment complex in the city. The best locations are naturally in rural areas because you do not have the night sky masked by city lights. Find a location that is comfortable for you. Have at least two suitable locations where you can observe safely from. One for your every night observations and one higher location with a greater expanse of clear sky area that is darker. Use this second location if you become aware of UFO activity beginning or in progress. This is where you will see more and video objects for longer durations.
Note: If possible, and if you have a group of people performing a skywath try to set up at different locations, and use radios, cb's, cell phones, etc. to keep in touch with each other. This way when a UFO appears it can be photographed or videotaped from different locations. This may show other details or help in trianglating its position. see example: UFO's over Salt Lake City, Utah

8 Skywatching Tools.
If you know there is UFO activity around, you should try to photograph them if possible. This way you have images not only as proof, but have images & negatives that can be studied and analyzed by experienced researchers.

8 Still camera.
Still cameras are handy, but are not suitable for all recording of UFO's, especially at night. UFO's are not always bright illuminations that stay around long enough to click a photo of. They are usually (but not always) fast moving dimly illuminated objects at high or very low altitudes just above tree or roof top. Under these circumstances a still camera is somewhat useless. Still cameras especially for night photography, (SRL's) are best set on a sturdy tripod and using fast colour film (400-800 to 1600 ISO) and a cable release. Set the exposure time to bulb where the shutter remains open until manually released. This will record the movement of an illumination of a medium to bright object at night. A motion trail will be recorded indicating the path of the object. Any variation in the flight path will be recorded as a curve in the trail. Thus indicating possible unconventional craft.
see example UFO captured on Film Over Area 51    If the illumination in question is slow and bright enough do try a still image of it. Film cameras produce very high resolution images that can be greatly enlarged so should be used in appropriate circumstances. Just make sure you have a reliable processing outlet to develop your film.
You can also experiment with different film types. Infrared colour and B/W, 400-800 B/W force processed for higher ASA ratings. There is also an Ultraviolet film available. Special filters must be used with these types of spectrum wavelength films. 400 ASA colour can be force processed. Use this if you think the dim object may not come out in the photo. If you photograph an object and you think force processing is needed, then change film even if there is most of the roll left. The process may overexpose anything else on the roll.

8 Digital Still Cameras.
Digital cameras are less practical at night and best kept for daylight photography. Their light capturing capabilities are not yet to the standard of film cameras. exception: 16Megapixel or higher) However, if you already own one then do have it with you if that is all you have. A 8 Mp or higher is better. Enlargements and analysis of digital images have some problems with pixel size and super zooms into an object captured has less resolution. Keep this in mind. Get a high megapixel camera.

8 Video Cameras.
Video cameras are the best skywatching tool you will have to record UFO's. If you already have a video camera, then use it. If you intend buying a new video camera, then these are the camera features your new camera should have.
8 Digital - Digital cameras produce cleared and overall better images then analogue cameras. They hold colour better, especially reds and orange colour's. More successful video enhancements if you capture something worth looking at. The 3CCD digitals are best though more expensive.
Zero Light Lux - Will capture dim illuminations at night. A must for UFO filming.
Infrared Night Shot - This feature gives you the capability to 'see in the dark' and further captures dim illuminations. No colour is produced but you can 'see further'.
Super Steady Shot - A must for hand held cameras to reduce motion, especially at high zoom factors.
High Optical and Digital Zoom Power - The more powerful the zooming range the better. Most of your filming (even at full zoom) will be using the optical zoom ONLY. Only use the digital zoom if the object is slow moving or very high altitudes. (better to get something rather then nothing). Get into the habit of only digital zooming momentarily just to get some footage , then zoom back to full optical zoom. High digital zoom gives too much pixelization of the image and distorts it.
Telephoto Lens - One accessory that you should get is a telephoto lens. These screw into your filter thread and multiply your zooming power. I use a 2x but 3x and 5x are available, but you will never uses the full capabilities of the 5x because it is just too powerful. The images are too shaky for a hand held camera.
Tri-pod - I have tried using a tri-pod for general readiness to film UFO's, with the camera attached. You will not get any fast objects or overhead objects like this. A tri-pod is best used for distant slow or any slow moving object, especially daytime. You can use your full zoom and get steady images on a tri-pod but are not practical for general use unless you add a quick release feature available from Bogen. Hold your camera in your hand at the ready for any activity. If you consider the tri-pod should then be used, then attach your camera. A good quality fluid head tri-pod like the Miller, or Bogen brand is best. Cheaper ones are too jerky when panning and not worth the savings
Video Tapes - Try different brands of video tapes. Some brands are better for night filming. They respond better to low light conditions.
Powerful Spotlight, Laser or Strobe Light - If you want to see if you can get a response from a UFO, flash a spot light , laser or portable strobe light at it. Making a triangle pattern in the sky often seems to work, Do this while filming so you can record any response. We have. 
see example:  UFO captured on Film Over Area 51
Video Camera Settings - It is important to set your camera so that you are ready in an instant to record an event.
8 Focus - Set to Manual Focus, never use Auto Focus. Auto focus will try to focus on small points of light (especially at night) and automatically zoom in-and-out resulting in footage that is useless or confusing. see example of misidentified ground lights analysis by UUFOH Even daytime footage if filming a small distant or high altitude object may fool the auto focus setting. You want to be able to get clear focus on an object immediately you have it in frame and keep it focused. Sometimes you only have seconds to film an object, so good instant focus is a must.
To Adjust Manual Focus - Apply full optical zoom and adjust focus on a distant object. A Star or Planet such as Jupiter is good, because when the Moons of Jupiter are seen, you are in good focus. Then test the same object in full digital zoom. make any small adjustments for better focus. Then re-test your focus on full optical zoom. When properly adjusted, you are nearly ready to film. Get into the habit to repeat this procedure as first priority each skywatch outing.
Shutter Speed - Normal shutter speed is set to 1/50th of a second. Use this for all night time filming. Higher speeds at night result in 'jumping' images. If filming in daytime, you can adjust to the highest setting of 1/10,000th of a second if you wish. Use this setting especially if you want to mount your camera on a tri-pod and let free roll if trying to capture the so called "Rods" or fast UFO flyovers. Fast shutter speeds stop motion blur and allow better image enhancements for analysis.
Aperture Settings - Most video cameras have a feature where you can change aperture settings for different light conditions. These are either auto pre-set by the turning of a dial to adjust, or a full manual adjustment or a combination of both. Get familiar with this setting on your own camera so that you can adjust for best lighting conditions at the time. Day time is easy to adjust, however night time adjustments are more critical. Find the setting that allows the most light into the camera at night. You will see this in the viewer. On the zero light lux cameras, you may find too much light available for clear filming and the viewer shows too much background 'hash'. If this is happening, adjust the aperture back just until the 'hash' reduces to a nice clear dark screen. Test while viewing faint star clusters is best. This also applies if using the infrared night vision feature.
Camera Viewer - Even though your camera may have a fold out side viewer screen, only use this when tracking a slow moving object already framed and easy to follow. Otherwise, always use the main viewer that is mounted parallel to your camera. This allows instant locating and framing of an object, especially small or fast moving objects. You can raise the camera to your eye while looking at the object and instantly find it. By keeping your other eye open, you can increase your chances of instant framing onto it and also see it in real time to see any changes in colour or brightness. A B/W viewer will not show any colour changes.
Audio - Try to record as much important detail of your sighting as you film by speaking clearly enough to understand when you play the tape back. Record details like, direction of approach of the object, its location in relation to known ground based objects, mountains or towns etc. Note any visual features or changes in appearance or direction the object may take. If it passes a Star that you are aware of, name the Star or constellation it passes in front of. Basically any useful information that can later by used in analysis or identification. If the object is lost behind a tree or cloud, say so on the video audio. This establishes why the object suddenly 'went out'.
Time and Date - These are important details to record at the time of a sighting. You can leave the time and date display on at all times if you wish. This establishes a date of the event and time duration of the sighting. Durations between any strobing or flashing features from the object can be accurately calculated. All this information can assist identification and analysis of your footage at a later date.
At night, it is best to turn on the time and date display and record this for a few seconds then turn them off. After you film an event, then immediately turn the time and date display back on and record another few seconds. This will establish sighting details. Not having the time and date displaying while filming an object at night, gives you a full dark screen when previewing the event without the brightness from the time - date display, yet you still have it recorded for identification purposes.

Now that you have your camera ready or just want to see if there is any UFO activity so you can see a UFO with your own eyes. Go to your chosen observation location and start observing the sky. This is the very first step you have successfully made in observing UFO's.
Best Time. When checking for activity, just after sunset to around 9pm are the best times. If you do not see any 'indicators' between these times, then the chances are that there is no activity around your location at this period of time. But, do try again tomorrow and the next day.. and the next... and the next etc, etc, etc.....
When you do see UFO activity, any time day or night are likely times to see them.

8 Preparing Yourself.
You have to now begin training your observation abilities. The secret to observing UFO's is...
1. Patience - You will need to spend at least one hour in this location. It takes a good 10 minutes to adjust your eyes to the sky conditions. You will have to overcome the "impatience barrier". Self discipline has to be learnt and the boredom overcome. It is through development of this self discipline, that you will become successful and eventually see UFO's. The wait will be worthwhile. Once you see UFO's, boredom will not be a issue for you.
2. Persistence - To see UFO's the first time they visit your location you have to be persistent in your skywatching. Set regular times you begin skywatching so it becomes a habit. Fit it into your daily routine so it becomes part of your life. You have an agenda, and that is to see UFO's. Once in a while is not good enough. Remember, a UFO 'flap' may only last 1-3 days or nights, so you do not want to miss that do you? Persistence will yield results. After your first evening vigil, have another half hour look just before you go to bed. They may be around later in the evening.
3. Familiarity - You must get used to and familiar with the normal environment within your field of view. Take note of where the street lights, building lights, aircraft flight paths, radio beacon lights and any other 'normal' illumination in your area. Get familiar with the positions of the brightest stars and constellations in the night sky. Identifying these can not only help pass time but educate you. You will eventually be able to quickly identify an illumination that you know from you observation experience, should not be there, and take special notice of it. Get used to the flight paths, size, speed and angles of approach and departure of Satellites. You will need this knowledge for comparisons at a later date.
4. Vision - Your vision development will improve over time, it is not something that is easy to master at first but it will happen if you regularly observe the night sky for longer periods of time. There are two parts of your vision that need developing..
a) Night Vision - You will be basically training your eyes (brain actually) to 'see in the dark'. You need to develop this so that you can see the fast moving faint to black objects moving against the night sky.
b) Peripheral Vision - Your side vision will develop at the same time as your night vision abilities. They work together. You will notice things moving out of the corner of your eye, even from just behind you as you develop this ability. This alerts you to any movement and allows you faster reaction times to film or observe. You will be observing larger areas of the sky so that instead of looking, you will be constantly 'scanning' the whole sky much faster and more accurately. This is a real advantage to develop this ability. You can do it, just keep training yourself while being aware of what you are developing and why.

8The 'Indicators'. (Night Time)
Now that you are armed with the information discussed above and ready to develop your personal abilities, lets go skywatching.
For your sake, I hope there is no UFO activity around when you first go skywatching because this will allow you to 'feel' what it is like under normal conditions when there is no UFO around. It will also get you familiar with your surrounding location and settle you down into a routine. You could be lucky however, but this would spoil you into thinking it was like this all the time, which it is not.
8 What to Look For.
1. Any fast moving dull to dark object against the night sky. Basically, any moving object not identifiable. Birds and bats do fly at night but you will learn the difference. Sometimes the black objects are wide boomerang shapes and move very fast.
2. High altitude flashing lights. These will appear obviously higher that satellite height. They may flash only once or 4-5 times. Appear stationary of slowly moving. Just mentally record these as possible indicators. Always try to video anything you consider unusual. Good practice. Get comparisons and evidence. One event does not make a UFO 'wave' or 'flap'. You will learn this over time. You need a series of 'indicator' events to confirm possible UFO activity.
3. Strobing Objects. These may appear at or below satellite height and strobe constantly at various rates. The main object may appear black (unseen) or fully illuminated with the strobe even brighter. These can move very fast in steady straight flight path not on commercial flight paths. They fly W to E and S to N and N to S here.
4. The most spectacular of the 'indicators' that will confirm real UFO activity is happening are what I call the "Probe" type objects. These appear to be very bright silver/white lights at low altitude. (sometimes mistakenly thought of as bright satellites) Your observation abilities are needed to calculate altitude by referencing the angles of approach and departure of the object related to the angle in the sky compared to the horizon. These will sometimes flare up very brightly (5x brightness of Venus) and fade down to go out and lost from view over a short distance. Some (if not all) are spheres around 2 feet dia. but some could be a little larger and upright drum shape. They seem to flare up over populated towns and cities, then go out once past city boundaries. These are a real UFO.
5. If you see some or all of the above, you are in a UFO 'wave' situation. You are now highly likely to see anything UFO. One type of UFO to look for is the dim illuminated rectangular fast moving object. These size from 2 - 5 feet. Now is the time to observe the sky all chances you get, day and night. The chances of day time UFO is heightened once you see the 'indicators'.
The level of UFO activity will determine the scale between 'wave' and 'flap'.
Remember: "Each day you do not see UFO's, is one day closer to when you will".  Good luck.

Make a Graph or list  to record you UFO sightings. You will record the UFO peaks during a one year period. You can then compare activity for each year you keep records. You may then be able to predict when the next 'wave' of UFO activity is due.

Always report your UFO sightings whether you capture it on film or video or not.
8Report Utah UFOs - online form

8Become Part Of The UUFOH TEAM
If you want togo on skywatches in Utah and join a great group, consider joining The Utah UFO Hunters
8UUFOH Membership Form (online)
UPDATED: 7/1/2005

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8More UUFOH Photos?
We need funds to get numerous rolls of film developed taken by the  UUFOH Team. If you can help with a donation please do so. Aliendave will send you a thank you gift for helping out.
We currently have 2 dozen rolls of film that need developing.
8More help in taking/saving pictures:
One thing you might want to try if you have any photo editing programs is get into the "settings" or "preferences" of the program and set the quality or resolution to its highest setting/level for both viewing and saving. that will greatly increase the quality of the photos you view and save.
>Also don't save in .jpg format, (at least for the original) doing so compresses the file automatically, and every time it is saved again in .jpg - do this ten times and you now have a very poor quality photo- instead save it in .png or .bmp.   I like .png the best. works in all programs and is print quality.
>You can increase the resolution of your photos to 300dpi using Paint Shop Pro 7-9. Of coarse if the photos are saved originally at that level or in .png, or .bmp  you could increase much more than that. 
>Another photographers trick that I use when I think I might have taken a photo of something interesting or a UFO and want to blow it up for analysis or just get extremely high quality is, (35mm or digital processing) Have a quality developer burn the photos straight from the negatives, memory card or disk to a CD in > .tiff < file format- 16 base or higher. A photo in that format is huge! and the best quality. But does cost a bit more to have done but very well worth it.
>Hope that helps you in obtaining and saving your photos in the future, feel free to contact us for any reason and I hope you take the time to fill out the UFO report form if you spot a UFO in Utah.   -- UUFOH