Thank you for visiting this new platform cataloguing my observations of refraction phenomena. My name is Travis Finley and I am a hobbyist and amateur photographer (and hopefully a published observational scientist in the future). This site contains research, recordings, and documentation about refraction over extended distances varying from 1-20+ miles. According to my research, what we are told about these phenomena is grossly short-sighted and in need of redressing. I hope you are as impressed and enamoured with these images as I am. I have fallen in love with a new mistress and you will learn more about her in the pages and posts which follow. All images, unless noted, are mine.
The image above is one of the earliest images I captured of an atmospheric phenomenon I would later affectionately call, the “aetherband.” The aetherband is simply a moniker I smithed to account for the manifold presentments of refraction phenomena such as miraged and non-miraged images. As a full time trucker, my research was limited by time and mental acuity after driving for 70 hours during the week. Many days I simply did not want to exercise my brain. But I DID want to get out and shoot. You might say I was a fledgling observational scientist. My new found love and hobby began back in March of 2018.
So, I made observation after observation on both the east and west coasts.
Where I live, the Susquehanna River feeds straight into the Chesapeake Bay, right at the head in Havre de Grace, MD;
in Ventura, CA, I found the coastal road along the Pacific Ocean at Emmawood State Beach and The Rincon to be prime locations for my observations.
The “aetherband” is simply the same concept as “atmospheric optics.” From WIKI:
Atmospheric optics is “the study of the optical characteristics of the atmosphere or products of atmospheric processes…. [including] temporal and spatial resolutions beyond those discernible with the naked eye”. Meteorological optics is “that part of atmospheric optics concerned with the study of patterns observable with the naked eye.”
So, why run maverick and create a new term? Good question. Answer: three syllables. Just kidding. I chose this tact precisely because I came to the conclusion my observations were bringing to my attention nuances which the accepted rhetoric was not addressing. I was not saying “refraction is a thing;” or, “refraction is happening here or there.” What I was realising was that the effects of meteorological optics was the CAUSE of an other effect NOT being addressed. That other effect is obstruction over distance. This has led to my desire to write for publication defending this thesis:
The image produced by the inferior mirage is an horizontal one, not vertical; therefore, from the vanishing line to the disclosing line (again, my coined term), there is 3D space for which an account must be made.
I will post more on this thesis in other entries as this is simply an introductory page. In the meantime, here is an Audio/Visual for my claim.
Now, to be sure, miraged and non-miraged phenoms had been scienced and diagnosed from antiquity. Andrew Thomas Young and others like Robert Greenler had been in the field for over 30 years, making diagrams and schematics breaking down the CAUSES and variables of these phenomena; but I began to ask questions, it seemed to me, they were not.
And, so, Lady Aetherband was born. The gist of my novel moniker would eventually be narrowed down to this. Aether simply refers to the “air” or the medium through which the observation was being made. “Band” simply refers to the field of view one takes under scrutiny. It can be as broad as the entire Anacapa chain,
or an isolated section.
The “Aetherband” includes all the variables responsible for causing “refraction phenomena.” Of these phenomena, mirage is the most familiar. There are two primary mirages, inferior and superior. An inferior mirage is a mirrored image below the source; thus, it is inferior to the erect image. Superior mirages are the opposite with the erect image below and the mirrored image invert above. I would become well acquainted with these sisters over the next three years. However, the inferior mirage was the more prevalent expression of the aetherband as the conditions for her superior sister were not as frequent in the climes where I frequented.
Enjoy some of the images I have captured below. Can you tell which is which?