Trails of mist…human-shaped shadows…unexplained spots of light or darkness.
These are the types of unusual elements seen in Julie Griffin’s ghostly photographs taken at purportedly haunted spots throughout the Northeast. Griffin, a paranormal photographer from Meriden, gave a presentation of her photos at the historic on North Colony Street on Sunday, Sept. 2, to raise money for the .
Griffin has been interested in paranormal activity for much of her life. She claims to have lived in two actively haunted houses during her childhood in Ohio. She recalls seeing doors close and chandeliers swing on their own, and hearing children’s footsteps when no one was there.
“It was never scary,” she said. “It was actually kind of cool when it happened.”
She credits her parents’ handling of the situation for making it a positive experience for her. “They treated it like it was the personality of the house,” she said.
Although her experience with paranormal activity began early, it wasn’t until late 2008 that she actively started exploring it. She joined a paranormal group and began visiting spots believed to be haunted. She soon realized she had a gift for capturing paranormal activity in photographs.
Griffin uses a regular digital camera “set on automatic everything,” she said. When she is on location, she shoots “whatever attracts me the tiniest bit.”
One of her rules of thumb is to take three shots of the exact same spot. She does this because “energy constantly changes, moves and manifests.” She also likes to try to capture one “normal” photo for comparison to the shots that show signs of what she calls “spirit energy.”
When asked whether she can see the spirit energy without the camera, she told the audience, “I’ve never seen anything with my eyes that I caught a picture of.”
When she does capture an anomaly in a photograph, the first thing she tries to do is find a natural explanation for it. “You need to debunk yourself,” she explained.
The photographs in her presentations and on her website (www.ghostlyphotographs.com) are the ones that show anomalies for which “there is no natural explanation,” she said.
Griffin has done some spirit hunting right here in Meriden, including at the Goffe house. “It is a privilege,” she said, to be allowed free range to roam and photograph such historic places.
Last week, she set up her camera with a motion detector inside the Goffe House when no one was there, and it did go off. She is still trying to come up with an explanation for why. The photograph it captured shows no ghostly signs that she can find, yet.
Volunteers at the Goffe House shared stories of their own experiences with what they believe might be ghosts. One woman described entering the historic kitchen one day to find that cooking implements that are always kept in the same spot had completely shifted around.
Members of the audience also talked about their ghostly experiences. Griffin spoke with them after the presentation, and in one case, recommended a medium. She says it is helpful to be able to talk openly about these experiences.
Griffin is now putting the finishing touches on a self-published book called Ghostly Photographs—Ghost Stories You Can See with Your Own Eyes. In addition to her pictures, it will share some of her own paranormal experiences. The book will be available through her website in October, just in time for Halloween.