Thursday, January 4, 2018

Ways to Research the Paranormal From Home or in the Field


I've spent 9 years on GHT talking about and showing what it's like to seek out the unexplained in many ways. I hope in this post to show how all of you can get involved in ways you never imagined and that might accommodate your skill set or your capabilities. I'm not talking about the usual "be a paranormal investigator," but some ways to express your particular capabilities and interests that contribute to the field as a whole! 

Let's begin this explanation of a wide variety of ways to participate in the unexplained research by showing what can be done from home and what can be done on the road. 


FROM HOME




Some of you may have limitations budget wise, physically or time constraints that mean working from home is the only way you are going to delve into your corner of unexplained research.


GOOGLE EARTH RESEARCH


Go ahead and get the Google Earth app on your desktop and take off on an excursion to places that need some uncovering. From the convenience of their own homes, regular folks have been poking around our planet and finding some pretty amazing things! There are some great videos on YouTube where people have revealed locations and unusual finds. Begin in areas known a cradles of civilization whether it's the Ural Mountains of Russia, South Africa, Egypt, or Antarctica. 

As you gain confidence, consider sharing your findings on YouTube. Free programs like Windows Movie Maker are very easy to load up videos and pics, add captions, add music if you want. Go to "File" in the left corner, scroll down and click on "save movie" and "for computer" and save. You can now upload to YouTube. 


BOOK/ONLINE RESEARCH




You love to read, love to take notes, enjoy gathering up information that lines up and creating hypotheses. This is the key to a great researcher. Interviewing witnesses and experts, reading nonfiction books on subjects, magazines, online articles on scientific sites, are all ways to ignite the researcher's voracious appetite for knowledge.

What do you do with your research? Consider signing yourself up on Academia. and load up a paper you've written on a subject you researched. Many people want to see the references and how you lined it up to make a point. Or, as I have done, consider starting a blog on Blogger or Wordpress and share your findings and thoughts on the subjects, directing your readers to great resources to do their own explorations. It's a great way to promote intelligence. 



WEBMASTER




If your skill set involves web design, consider being a webmaster for a paranormal research team. This keeps you on top of evidence and communications and a public conduit for passing on information in an attractive and timely manner. As an adjunct to running the website, you might consider utilizing other social media such as Instagram (great for photographic evidence), Facebook (great for sharing info with the public and get a following), Twitter (to announce events), and even Pinterest (if you link your photos to your website, when people do google image searches for UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts... they will find your photo, click on it and be taken to your website). 



HISTORIAN




You are thrilled to watch historical movies, read books about history, rushing to the renaissance festival, historic sites, historic tours, and reenactments. That love for history is a HUGE help to paranormal research teams. The background on locations, Native history, battles, death, building histories, legends and more are critical to a thorough study. 

If you are a history buff consider funneling it into other things, like putting on events for your team to educate the public or earn money for your nonprofit. Also, consider writing historic articles for the team's site/blog to add to the public share. The team historian can give the researchers key information that helps them plan out the best study. 


REVIEWING EVIDENCE




There are such great audio and video programs these days for evaluating evidence that anyone with great patience to listen to hours of audio or watch hours of video is a precious part of a research team. There are members who get lazy, say they reviewed evidence they didn't sit through and someone willing to set aside time to focus all their attention is as precious as gold.

For those who like to review evidence, consider doing some YouTube vids showing how you review evidence, defining the evidence, and sharing the findings. You can also prepare them to be placed on a research team site. If you like to work independently, consider accepting evidence for review and then video/blog about the findings. There are many video reviewers on YouTube who look over evidence and explain what they found. 

MUSIC/ART/PERFORMING ARTS




Creative types working from home have a lot of options in the field of paranormal studies. Inspired by the themes, books are written, book covers designed, artist canvasses approached, documentary videos assembled, flyers for events drawn up, and ghost tours hosted. 

As horror is often a major love of those in the field of paranormal research, it also brings the possibility of writing scripts, making short films, working in haunted attractions, building play sets....



FROM THE FIELD




Some people need to touch it, feel it, walk around in it, get all the visceral experiences of investigating the unknown and that is a very vital part of field work. Sure, you can go on a ghost investigation or a Bigfoot expedition, but how about some other unusual activities that broaden your understanding and complement your field research? 

GRAVE RUBBINGS




A love of cemeteries is a good start to taking up a passionate expression like photography or grave rubbings. There are many good sites online that show how to do it ethically and gently to as to get the beautiful relief of a well-designed headstone. While you are at the cemetery, be sure to bring a trash bag, and pick up any litter. Pick up flower vases that fell over. These memorials to our loved ones need to never be forgotten or neglected.

If you enjoy this time at the cemetery, considering documenting obscure cemeteries. Sites like Find-A-Grave online appreciate those who write in and give listings of the graves. 


URBEX




Since a good deal of researchers go to remote places and derelict buildings already, the hobby of urban exploration is another option. Photographing and exploring abandoned buildings is a popular activity. It involves an appreciation for architecture and history. There is nothing so desolate as dust and items left behind, leaving one to wonder about the clues. The same minds that enjoy the puzzle of the unexplained appreciate the same brain activity when poking around abandoned sites.

It goes without saying that trespassing past signs or fencing is illegal and dangerous. As well, most buildings have exposed asbestos, nails, wildlife and even drug dealers hiding within, so it's not a lone activity and masks and tetanus shots should be standard. The photographs you obtain might be some of the most exquisite work you have ever done. For more inspiration, click on the "urban exploration" button in the upper right on my blog.


ROAD TRIPS


Road trips can be based on themes, like taking a circular route through the state, stopping at every cemetery to photograph or can be destination-related like heading out to stay in a haunted bed and breakfast inn. 

There are many lists of the most haunted roads in America and great open areas with no city lights to observe the skies for UFOs, as well as Bigfoot country with ranger cabins for rent. You can check out battlefields, historic buildings, city ghost tours, or Native sites of significance. 

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As you can see from this post, this only begins to scratch the surface about how many ways one can contribute to the field of research and the thirst for knowledge about the unknown. Take your talents, your preoccupations, your skill set, your comfort level and go forth, finding your niche and sharing it with the world. This year I plan to encourage lots of productivity in regards to the passion for the unknown. 

After all, we are para geeks, this is what we do! 

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