Kirlian Photography


Kirlian photography is an accumulation of photographic methods used to catch the phenomenon of electrical coronal releases. It is named after Semyon Kirlian, who in 1939 inadvertently found that if an item on a photographic plate is associated with a high-voltage source, a picture is created on the photographic plate. The strategy has been differently known as “electrography”, “electrophotography”, “corona discharge photography” (CDP), “bioelectrography”, “gas discharge visualization (GDV)”, “electrophotonic imaging (EPI)”, and, in Russian writing, “Kirlianography”.

Kirlian Photography

History of Kirlian Photography

In 1889, Czech B. Navratil introduced  the word “electrography”. After seven years in 1896, a French experimenter, H. Baravuc, made electrographs of hands and leaves. In 1898, Russian engineer Yakov Narkevich-Iodko showed electrography at the fifth presentation of the Russian Technical Society.

In 1939, two Czechs, S. Pratt and J. Schlemmer distributed photos demonstrating a shine around leaves. That year, Russian electrical architect Semyon Kirlian and his wife Valentina created Kirlian photography subsequent to watching a patient in Krasnodar doctor’s facility who was accepting therapeutic treatment from a high-recurrence electrical generator. They had seen that when the terminals were brought close to the patient’s skin, there was a shine like that of a neon release tube.

Kirlian Photography


The Kirlians directed experiments in which photographic film was put on top of a conducting plate, and another conductor was connected to a hand, a leaf or other plant material. The conductors were stimulated by a high-recurrence high-voltage power source, delivering photographic pictures commonly demonstrating an outline of the item encompassed by a quality of light.

In 1958, the Kirlians reported the consequences of their investigations for the first time. Their work was relatively unknown until 1970, when two Americans, Lynn Schroeder and Sheila Ostrander, published a book “Psychic Discoveries Behind the Iron Curtain”. High-voltage electrophotography soon got to be referred to the overall population as Kirlian photography. Although little interest was generated among western researchers, Russians held a conference on the subject in 1972 at Kazakh State University.

Kirlian photography was utilized as a part of the former Eastern Bloc in the 1970s. The corona discharge shine at the surface of an object subjected to a high-voltage electrical field was referred to as a “Kirlian aura” in Russia and Eastern Europe.In 1975, Belarusian researcher Victor Adamenko composed a paper titled Research of the structure of High-recurrence electric release (Kirlian impact) images. Scientific exploration of what the analysts called the Kirlian impact was directed by Victor Inyushin at Kazakh State University.


Thelma Moss and Kendall Johnson conducted extensive research at the Center for Health Sciences at the UCLA in the early 1970s. Moss led an autonomous and unsupported parapsychology laboratory that was closed by the university in 1979.

Mechanism of Kirlian Photography

Kirlian photography has been the subject of standard experimental research, parapsychology research and art. To a substantial degree, it has been used as a part of alternative medicine research.

Kirlian photography is a system for making contact print photos utilizing high voltage. The procedure involves setting sheet photographic film on top of a metal release plate. The object to be captured is then put straightforwardly on top of the film. High voltage is quickly connected to the metal plate, consequently making a presentation. The crown release between the item and the high-voltage plate is caught by the film. The created film results in a Kirlian photo of the item.

Color photographic film is aligned to create steadfast colors when presented to normal light. Corona discharges can collaborate with minute varieties in the distinctive layers of color utilized as a part of the film, bringing about a wide assortment of colors relying upon the local intensity of the discharge. Film and digital imaging methods additionally record light delivered by photons transmitted during corona discharge.

Photos of inanimate objects, for example, coins, keys and leaves can be made all the more effectively by establishing the item to the earth, a cold water pipe or to the opposite side of the high-voltage source. Establishing the item makes a stronger corona discharge. Kirlian photography does not require the use of a camera or a lens since it is a contact print process. It is possible to utilize a transparent cathode instead of the high-voltage release plate, permitting one to catch the subsequent corona discharge with a standard photograph or video camera.


Visual artists, for example, Robert Buelteman, Ted Hiebert, and Dick Lane have utilized Kirlian photography to create masterful pictures of a variety of subjects. Photographer Mark D. Roberts, who has worked with Kirlian imagery for more than 40 years, published a portfolio of plant pictures entitled “Vita occulta plantarum” or “The Secret Life of Plants”, initially displayed in 2012 at the Bakken Museum in Minneapolis.

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