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The Somerton Man Case. The body of a man found on an Australian beach close to a major Atomic Testing ground, he was probably poisoned, a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and an unbroken Code page found and associated to him. Set against a Cold War background in 1948, was this man a spy? We think so and this blog focuses on the evidence that was left behind and in some cases missed, the Code page, Dry Cleaning numbers, A Poem and a small, torn piece of paper bearing the words TAMAM SHUD.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

The Somerton Man: Video: The Face of the Somerton Man

A Photo-Realistic Image of the Somerton Man

After numerous attempts to produce an image of the Somerton Man as he would have appeared before his death, I had arrived at a point where I honestly thought that, aside from actually finding the man's identity, we would never find an image that would do him justice.

Then there was a moment, the moments that you hope for and get to when the obvious eventually dawns on you. As is usual in this case, the answer was right there in plain sight. I realised that we already had a good image of SM and one that was, to all accounts, recognised by no less a person than Jestyn. We have the plaster bust.

If you recall, Jestyn's reaction on seeing the bust was immediate and it shook her. What better a model could we possibly have?

I got to work upgrading a few skills and was able to produce reasonable skin and eye colouring and then to simply follow the shapes and details that existed in the plaster bust and the result is as you see in the image above. I did have valuable input from a couple of artist friends who wish to remain annonymous but they are nonetheless acknowledged.

The nose, the set of the eyes, the forehead, the chin and the mouth are exactly as they are in the plaster bust. This has to be the best possible image that we could have of the Somerton Man.

There is one thing that could be improved, or rather 2 things, his ears. When Lawson created the bust he bought in some special modelling clay that he set about using to create, as near lifleike as possible, the man's ears. He said later that he failed to do that. It could be that there is more to that story, but for now at least, it will have to suffice.

Make no mistake, this is another major breakthrough for this blog. It came about as a result of persistence and because of always listening to the words and advice of others. In the end you never know just who it was or what was said that fires off a chain of thought that leads to breakthroughs like this. In that regard, the ongoing offline discussions with Pete Bowes, Clive and others, have all played their part, I acknowledge that with thanks.

Where to from here? Well, I think ot would be of great benefit if we had a walking, talking 3D rendered model of SM. That would entail a level of skill and resource that I don't possess to the level required. The specialised photography and modelling skills for the task would reside in others, perhaps Adelaide University Professor Derek Abbott?

Video: How The  Photo Realistic Image 

Was Matched To The Bust..

This video shows how we were able to create the photorealistic image of the Somerton Man that is absolutely true to the details of the Plaster bust. It was this plaster bust that caused Jestyn to react to the extent that she was visibly shaken by it's appearance.

This is as close an image of SM as has ever been achieved.The hope is that someone will now recognise the man in this video.

Please share this video far and wide, our man could be from any country in the world. For convenience, I have included a reasonably sized version that you can download. I make all of my material available to anyone, all I ask is that if you use this or other material, please quote your source as being the Tamam Shud blog.

Comments are always welcome.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Somerton Man: The Image of SM Improves & Raises Questions

Plain & Inverted Image of SM Bust

In this image above, I trimmed the areas around the face as shown in the plaster bust and inverted the one on the right as you look at it. I left the other, plain version in white for comparison purposes.

More detail here than in the standard bust images. The next artist's impression will be based on these as well as a side profile image.

And here we have all three images, the 3D scan, the white plaster bust and the inverted plaster bust.
What's striking, for me at least, is the incredible and unexplained difference between these full face images and the full face image supposedly taken immediately before the Bust was made:

Here is the Quad image which attempts to align all four images for comparison. Importantly, the ears will not match as in the bust, Lawson had problems modelling the ears to the exact shape for SM. Note that I have attempted to follow the same chin line for the photo image as for the other 3. Al;so note that in the photo of SM, his head was apparently slightly tilted backwards.

The mouth appears to me to be quite different in shape and in width, the bridge of the nose does not seem to match. The face seems significantly broader in the photograph even with trimming.

From this comparison, it is not 100% certain that the man in the photograph is the same as the person of whom the bust was made.

More to follow..

Friday, 8 July 2016

Somerton Man: The Real Face of the Somerton Man?

Is This Our Man?

Over the past few weeks, I have been liaising with Pete Bowes of TomsByTwo regarding the apparent differences between the earlier images of SM and those that were taken just prior to the bust being made and the 3D scan that was carried out by Adelaide University. I took on the project of having an artist create their impression, based on the 3D scan, of how this man would look when he was alive. The above is the outcome of the full face view. On the left is the 3D image from the Adelaide University Scan.

I will be adding two more semi-profile views to this post, but in the meantime, I thought I would share this with everyone and get any feedback you may have.

I should point out that we are acting on the assumption that this scan is of the man found on the beach. As many would be aware, there is a possibility that it is not him due to a comment made by Paul Lawson when he spoke of discussing the 'Disposal of the original body' with Adelaide Police. We should also be mindful of the fact that Jestyn's unusual reaction came when she viewed this bust of the man.


Looking through the image archive and on being prompted by Pete Bowes, here's an interesting image that I brought togtether using the GIMP free graphic image editing tool. The intent was to compare the images of SM from the first Police photo to the 3D profile.

I have made every effort to get these images to properly align and as you can see whilst the head shape is similar, I actually aligned the images using the height and breadth of the originals and then the forehead from each, the original image that shows beneath in the lighter grey pic appears to be quite different in the shape of the nose, the upper lip and the chin. The natural question would be 'Did the embalming process or the mold making process have the effect of significantly altering the appearance?' Bear in mind that we are dealing with digital images and there could be some variance between the two pics, I just happen to think that the variances here go beyond what you might expect.

Consider this, Police set the interview up for Jestyn with the intent to 'shake her up' and perhaps get her to confess to knowing the man. The Police knew that the plaster bust was a good likeness to SM otherwise they would not have made use of it.

This would explain to some extent why the initial, altered image of SM was the one publicised by the Police, they didn't want their prime suspect to know the real identity of the man that was found on the beach until it suited their purpose. That's the theory and I know that stemming from this, there is a range of new inferences that can be applied to the case. It can change the whole game.

Thanks to Pete Bowes for his input.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Somerton Man: About that tie..

Tracking Down the Somerton Man's Tie..

The tie that the Somerton Man was wearing has long been a subject of interest. Was it a club tie? Where was it made? How did it come into his possession?

All good and valid questions and researchers have looked high and low and came up with some very close matches. One of the challenges we have with this image is of course that it is in black and white, we can see what appears to be 3 different shades of colour but no more than that; enough to get an idea of the pattern at least. As events unravelled, there are references to the colour of the striped tie and that it was likely of US design due to the right to left diagonal pattern. The issue being that British striped ties had diagonals that went from left to right or 'heart to sword' as it is/was more popularly known. However, both patterns were common in Australia during the 1940s as is evidenced by this image of the SA Police Radio Communications Room in August 1948:

As you should be able to see, the gentleman second in from the right of the image is wearing a right to left striped tie.

So, it would be fair to say that the use of this particular design was reasonably common place.
Having spent time over the years in tracking down the SM design as in various manufacturers, eBay and others, it seems to me that there are quite a few possibilities.

What if we were able to track down an example that was linked in some way to an Intelligence Service for example? That would be interesting and, certainly, break the tedium of browsing endless catalogues and web pages only to say, 'Look what I've found!'

As part fo the normal research process, I quite regularly browse through YouTube and some of the WW2 and early cold war video clips looking for various bits of clues. SOme few months back I came up with one particular documentary that looked specifically at MI5 and SOE in WW2. The subject is always of interest because of the micro-writing link to SOE and their Ink H process which was used to create the SM code page. Rather than suggest you go through the entire video, which is very interesting by the way, I took a couple of screen grabs of two narrators that were most interesting:

This gentleman, in particular, was most interesting, he is sporting a very nice example of a diagonal striped tie that seems to me to be a match to that worn by the Somerton Man. I would admit that I would be happier if we had a few more different angle shots to better highlight the pattern but it is certainly very close. I was unable to find this man's name but some more digging will probably turn it up.

And so was this man:

Although, his tie is not quite close enough being minus a pale coloured stripe.

So, here's the side by side comparison of SM and the closest match
tie wearer!

It appears that the blue band may not be broad enough but it may be that the angle at which both images were originally taken could be causing the problem. SO, here's another shot of SM's tie but this time in amongst the suitcase contents:

Looks a little different here doesn't it? Sufficient I think not to discount it at this stage.

A very brief post on what may prove to be a link, albeit tenuous for now at least.

Here's the link to the video:

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Somerton Man: Another Letter With Microcode, Mind Your Ts and Qs

The letter Q with it's micro writing is now joined by another letter, the letter T:

In the highlighted cross bar of the letter T found in the sequence MTB on the third line of the code, the three letters V X D are clearly seen. The image was first found more than 3 years ago and has been kept along with others for publication at what I believe to be the best and most appropriate times.

Below left you can see how the image was first found using back-light and colour enhancement. The right hand image was better focused and an image 'sharpening' tool was used together with contrast enhancement.

More images of microcode will be released over the coming weeks and months.