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Author Topic: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?  (Read 1259 times)

Offline James Hackerott

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Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« on: December 30, 2019, 02:27:30 AM »
My initial plans for documenting Darnell's traverse in Dealey Plaza did not include a detailed study of the Prayer Person images. However, after my first glace of the museum's quality images I realized there was sufficient improvement over any internet enhancements so I should try to document them. The superior imagery was noticed mainly with the neckline feature. Specifically, the neckline edge sharply contrasted with the surrounding garment, whereas on-line representations show the head/neckline as an elongated nebulous composite. In addition, bisecting the neckline is a thin, vertical line. The crispness of the neckline and vertical line were present on multiple frames. It's this clearly defined neckline and thin vertical line that were new and surprising to me. My first two sketches were made on different viewings of the film on the first day. The third sketch was made the following morning.

I remind the reader that the software (VLC) the museum provides to view videos is adequate for general viewing, but has poor utility for study on a frame-by-frame basis. There is no zooming feature and enhancements are not possible. You will soon notice that I'm not a sketch artist by any means.

Sketch 1
From the top I show shading on the top of the head. Below on the face there is a horizontal line like feature where one would expect eye level. If eyes, they are not resolved. The feature looks more like a 'uni-brow'. I did not notice this feature on other frames and it may be a video artifact. Below the chin level I show a horizontal line with a vertical line from the chin level down the center to the bottom of the plunging neckline. Those features are shown in all three sketches. Now as I write this I don't have a clear recall of the horizontal line and not sure if I saw or imagined it. The vertical line is real, and somewhat resembles a tie. But it would be a very thin tie. Something like a bolo (western) string tie. I asked my wife (who has no interest in this subject) for her impression of these features and she suggested a choker necklace with a pendent. Other ideas anyone?


Sketch's 2 and 3
These two are more alike than either is to Sketch 1. It is my recollection now that the neckline was about the same length as the head, and of about similar width of the head. In the future I plan on bringing some  magnification optics and grid paper for another try. 


HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!

Offline Alan Ford

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2020, 10:22:30 PM »

Online John Iacoletti

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2020, 02:30:05 AM »
VLC does let you frame advance and zoom.

Offline James Hackerott

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2020, 02:26:57 AM »
VLC does let you frame advance and zoom.
Thanks for those tips John, and yes you are right. VLC does have a frame advance button. My experience at home, and also at the museum, is that after a few to a few dozen consecutive uses the software freezes. Usually a visit to task manager to kill a background process was required to restart the VLC player. After a few times I just didn't use that feature. More troublesome is there is no single frame backup ability (I think).
After some Googling I learned how to invoke zooming. It works reasonably well and will be useful in the future. There are also some basic enhancement tools there too. 
My frustrations were noted by the librarian. I've learned she later discussed the crashing issues with her supervisor and I believe they are sympathetic to the limitations of VLC for researchers. Maybe the museum will upgrade software in the future.

Offline James Hackerott

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2020, 02:28:42 AM »

Okay Alan,thanks. I can see the dark streak that is no doubt the vertical linear feature I sketched. Thanks to John Lacoletti's tip above I found how to zoom the VLC images. Hopefully, I (or anyone else) can find more details in the museum's video.   

Offline Denis Morissette

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2020, 02:49:07 AM »
Iíve always been interested in the tall man on the left we see from the back. I think he was in front of the TSBD during the shooting and might be the same who is seen on the right in the last few seconds of the Hughes film. Looks dressed like a deputy sheriff who worked at the County Jail on Main and Houston.

Offline Denis Morissette

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2020, 02:57:09 AM »
Thanks for all the info on the Darnell film. Iím planning on visiting various archives in Texas in 2020 and 2021. I would certainly make a point on examining the Darnell and Cooper film. I love VLC, but it does indeed freezes when you press the frame by frame button too many times. When I have pressed 7 times, I wait about 20 seconds before pressing again, and it works well.

Offline James Hackerott

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2020, 04:14:28 AM »
Thanks for all the info on the Darnell film. Iím planning on visiting various archives in Texas in 2020 and 2021. I would certainly make a point on examining the Darnell and Cooper film. I love VLC, but it does indeed freezes when you press the frame by frame button too many times. When I have pressed 7 times, I wait about 20 seconds before pressing again, and it works well.
Thanks to you Denis for all of your work. Your compilation and blogs are very helpful and appreciated.
For the VLC I think changing the playback speed and dragging the video time button back and forth too much might be part of the freezing problems also. It seems like each newer version of VLC has more problems.

Offline James Hackerott

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2020, 04:17:01 AM »
Iíve always been interested in the tall man on the left we see from the back. I think he was in front of the TSBD during the shooting and might be the same who is seen on the right in the last few seconds of the Hughes film. Looks dressed like a deputy sheriff who worked at the County Jail on Main and Houston.
The tall guy in these Darnell crops looks good to me with the guy in Hughes. The center image is a four frame stack I made a few years ago.


Offline Alan Ford

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Re: Darnell Film at SFM - Part 4a - Prayer Man or Prayer Ma'am?
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2020, 11:32:46 AM »
Okay Alan,thanks. I can see the dark streak that is no doubt the vertical linear feature I sketched.

Thank you, Mr Hackerott. I had written off the dark streak in this frame as an anomaly-----------------



------------------but your information from your recent viewing of Darnell at the Museum makes it clear that it's present in multiple frames (and against a white background).

The thought occurs that the relationship of hand(s?) to dark vertical line may not be accidental:

A Coke bottle?

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