Ghosts are among the most widely believed paranormal phenomena. Cultures all around the world believe in spirits, and believe that after death there’s something more.

There is not one universally agreed-upon definition of what makes a ghost. Some believe that they are spirits of the dead who get lost on their way to The Other Side; others claim that ghosts are instead telepathic entities projected into the world from our minds. Still, others create their own special categories for different types of ghosts, such as poltergeists, residual hunting, intelligent spirits and shadow people. Some, on the other hand, define the soul as being the principle of organic life, having no existence of its own, and ceasing with the life of the body.

There are many contradictions inherent in the ideas of ghosts, for example the question of whether ghosts are material. Can they move through solid objects without disturbing them, or slam doors and throw objects across the room?

I tried to answer some of these questions, searching for the ghosts through people who experienced them in their life.

“The scientific approach to hunting does not begin with the unproven, seemingly contradictory notion that entities are at once non-material and quasi-physical. Rather, in scientific inquiry one seeks to gather, study, and follow the evidence. We only posit a supernatural or paranormal cause when all natural explanations have been decisively eliminated. Investigation seeks neither to foster nor debunk mysteries but instead to solve them. This approach can involve scholarly methods, such as historical research and folkloristic analysis, as well as scientific techniques like those used in crime-scene investigation” – says Mirko Barbaglia, founder of the Ghost Hunter Team (GHT).

“All Ghost Hunters will suggest that skepticism without any preconceptions could be the best starting approach. If you don’t want to believe in ghosts, it’s better not to waste your time trying to look for them. If you want to spend a night in a haunted house in the middle of nowhere, you really need the enthusiasm: the one who hopes to see a ghost. For me reality isn’t so limited as sometimes we would believe. Whether we speak about ghosts, energies, hallucinations, it doesn’t matter: what is important, trying to break the boundaries of reality” – says Luca Guariglia, member of GHT.

“I believe there is more to ghosts than just wishful thinking or the quest for a spooky story to tell around a campfire. I believe there are a number of good reasons to, at least, be open to the idea that ghosts might well inhabit our reality. I believe in them not just because I am sensitive to their reality but, most of all, because after six years of investigations and more than two hundred house hunting, I come to the conclusion that, in the other side, there is a life that is more real than the one we live here– Daniele Piccirillo, sensitive and member of GHT, says to me.

Facts are the sole criterion of reality, the argument that admits of no reply: in the absence of facts, the wise man suspends his judgment.

While man pushes himself to explore new worlds, the ghosts question grows stronger.

Five thousand years have now elapsed since the creation of the world, and still it is undecided whether there has ever been an instance of the spirit of any person appearing after death.

All arguments are against it, but all beliefs are for it.

Multimedia Tips

a. What program was used to create the multimedia?

I used Final Cut Pro X, the Trial version. I did everything in two days.

b. How and why did you choose that music?

“Echoes” is first of all my visual and personal approach to ghost hunting.

As my title suggests, I was looking for a moody and creepy flow that could represent my story about ghosts. That’s way, once I found the music, I decided to add other external sounds such as voices and whisperings. It was necessary also to find music with different tones, so that I could play with the still life pictures and the videos of the hunting.

c. Tell us about the editing process when you think of a multimedia. 

Editing multimedia is a little bit more complicated to me. You need a very strong narrative and concept otherwise it’s just a mess and the viewer doesn’t get anything out of it.

I experienced Multimedia the first time in Denmark, where I was attending a semester at the Danish school of Media and Journalism in Aarhus. At that time I worked only with videos.

This time I was starting from a photo essay instead.

Everyone was telling me “ is not that different from editing a photo essay”. I knew wasn’t that easy but I thought that it could be a starting point. So I started editing my multimedia as a photo essay, also because at the beginning I didn’t want to include videos.

I selected my pictures, I built my multimedia, but I wasn’t happy with it.

So, I realized that editing a multimedia is not exactly like editing a photo essay!

I had, of course, more pictures than videos – that was the easy part – but then combining them with the videos of the Ghost Hunters was a little more, as I said, complicated.

I struggled for a while with the rhythm, mostly according to the videos I selected than with the pictures. I worked on 5 videos; I decided to edit small parts and then put them all together, to create more suspense. The idea was to build a sort of break for a better understanding of what ghost hunting is. I wanted to show a real and practical action.

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Barbara Leolini | Echoes