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Monday, January 5, 2015

Bigfoot Bathing
Bigfoot bathing?
I was contacted by John Rodriguez, which by now most of you know him for his story and photo of what is being called a Bathing Bigfoot. The story ran on Huffington Post and there has been a lot of criticism of John Rodriguez and the photo. Former FBI agent and lead investigator of the Syfy Channel's "Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files" series, Ben Hansen offered some analysis of the photo and concluded it was a Photoshopped/digitally enhanced picture.

When Mr. Rodriguez emailed me, he also included some unreleased photos that he says he took that day. But before I get into those, I want to follow up on Ben Hansen's analysis. Over the last few years I have been able to speak via messaging with Ben Hansen and he is a really nice guy, so this is not a shot at him. I'm sure he has better sources and equipment than me. With that said I ran the Bathing Bigfoot photo on 3 different forms of software, software that helps detect if a photo has been altered in the form of Photoshop, here is the results of image 1 and image 2. None of the software identified the photos as having been altered with Photoshop.

In short, there were no glaring signs that the photo have been altered by Photoshop or any program.

There were also many asking for more photos and when Mr. Rodriguez emailed me, it seemed a little upset of the Photoshop claims. The photos where accompanied with this statement from him.

"I sent some photos I took to a researcher. They accused of photoshop which is totally untrue. Here are some bad one so thought had no value but maybe good for further evaluation."

Here are the other photos along with some enhancements and zooms I did.

Image 1

This is the first photo that Mr. Rodriguez attached to the email. It is basically the same as the one used in the Huffington Post article. The lighting is slightly different and there may be a slight angle difference. So there may not be much of interest in this photo but in the second image there is more to notice.

Image 2

In this photo the subject is a little more to the right and it appears Mr. Rodriguez was slightly closer or had zoomed his camera. There are some other interesting features that I will point out in enhanced photos below.

This is a zoom in of image 2. What I find interesting is the possibility that the mouth of the subject appears to be slightly opened. There also appears to be some duckweed on the head of the subject. If this is a living creature, could it have been ducking it's head under water? Was it bathing or could it have been possibly looking for food?

More enhancements below.

Comparison of the mouth from image 1 and 2.
Does it show that the mouth was slightly opened or is it just a trick of light and shadows? One thing that I should point out is the white strip of hair on the subjects head. It does not appear to be Photoshopped at all. Digital painting normally is noticeable in zooms.

More enhancements

Very tight zoom on the subjects face. Notice the eye, nose and mouth.

Also some have talked about the eye and the hair line.
So, I have made a couple of comparison photos using a gorilla with a odd looking hairline.

Just a quick comparison of a gorilla and the subject in the photo from Mr. Rodriguez. Also check out the nose. It is possible that the subject in the water looks a little different due to being in the water.

Eyes of a gorilla compared to the subject in the photos from Mr. Rodriguez.

Now for those who do not know the back story, let me summarize it quickly.

Back story overview
2015 began with a photo from John Rodriguez, a 66-year-old retired electrician, who claims that he was fishing Dec. 26 on the Hillsborough River near northeast Tampa, Florida, and came upon an incredible sight.

"I fish for gar in the river and I bring my camera to take pictures of the birds and what not. I heard a squishing sound, looked over and saw this thing walking through the water and crouch down in the duck weed. It did not look like a guy in a suit -- it was definitely an animal. I took this picture and got out of there as fast as I could."
"I've heard of Skunk Ape prints around Green Swamp [in Florida], but never anything like this," Rodriguez told HuffPost in an email. "My whole life, never seen anything like it."Rodriguez said he snapped the picture in the early afternoon at an area where the Hillsborough River becomes a cypress swamp

"I did not Photoshop this at all. Believe me or not," Rodriguez said. "When I plug in my memory card, it asks to import and opens in Photoshop. I just changed the name and saved. It seems like people get publicly crucified for coming forward with this kind of stuff."

Now, I will offer my opinion about the subject in Mr. Rodriguez photos.
First let me say, I do not think it to be a Bigfoot, if anything it is gorilla.
I can find no evidence that the photos are Photoshopped in any way, so that means that the subject was actually there. With that said, I do have many questions about the subject. What's with the white stripe? How deep is that swamp? Is it a living creature or a prop of some kind?  Could it just have been a pet or zoo gorilla?  So what is it? is it real? is it a hoax? is it something else? I really just don't know but I do not think it is a Bigfoot and is most likely a rubber movie prop type of thing.

In the end, we really don't know for sure about this subject but I would like to thank Mr. Rodriguez for contacting me and sharing the other photos. In the Bigfoot world, sharing possible photos of Bigfoot or possible evidence can cause a lot of grief.

Feel free to leave a comment on what you think about the subject.


[Source: Huffington Post]

This post by Thomas Marcum, Thomas is the founder/leader of the cryptozoology and paranormal research organization known as The Crypto Crew. Over 20 years experience with research and investigation of unexplained activity, working with video and websites. A trained wild land firefighter and a published photographer, and poet.

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  1. This is a guy from So. Cal. so I am not an expert by any means... If it is a rubber suit/prop it is pretty well made and convincing.. The one thing negative I can see is in the close up of the face in compare to the 'known real' gorilla face, you don't see the presents of a retina in the eye like can be seen in the real gorilla... Not saying it isn't the real deal and a real gorilla, but it caught my attention...

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Sorry but I think Hansen had it right. Zoom in close to the face and you'll see straight edges. There is loss of detail in the nose when it is near the plant, a sign it was touched up with a clone tool or smudge brush. The hair on the chin was not consistent: There was one section of hair that simply stopped at a dark area in a straight line. There are other deficiencies too, but ELA clearly shows the body has a much lower compression level than the rest of the photo. The back has high levels as it was likely lightened to match the light in the photo. There are other issues too.

    You can read my full analysis at: http://theparanormalanalyst.com/best-bigfoot-photo-ever/

    1. As I stated he (Ben Hansen) probably has better tools than me. The 3 programs I ran the photos on did not pick up any glaring signs of Photoshope. That does not mean it was not altered, it just means the software did not detect it. In any case I do not think it to be a real Bigfoot. Thanks for your comment.

    2. Sorry missed that!

      You should look into incorporating Error Level Analysis into your analysis programs. I've done my own testing with it and it works very well in detecting spliced in images that have different compression levels. Neal Krawitz is a photo forensic expert that created it. He even provides the analysis for free through Fotoforensics.com It is a very handy tool!

    3. The original photos where too large for fotoforensics ...I tried them there. but I found another place that offered ELA. Plus I have a stand along program on my computer. Thanks for the info.

  4. It can't be both ways. 1) I believe it to be a real subject & no photoshop editing jumps out 2) Its a rubber suit.
    This just goes on and on and if a real skunkape/Bigfoot was there and so were you, I'm inclined to believe you would convince a real creature it wasn't real. Its almost half as bad as the Finding Bigfoot show where self described experts bang on tree's trying to illicit what they deem is communicating, when in a realistic sense it was a mistake response by a Bigfoot which is why communication doesn't continue after the error unless it's between a known person at a habitation site.JMT but then again I'm a paid skeptic or expert caller so what do I know?


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