Photography history

Photography history

 

Today, photography is the largest growing hobby in the world. The use of cameras has allowed us to capture historical moments and reshape the way we see ourselves and the world around us. Just as Rome was not built in a day – modern day cameras have long history that goes back far in time.

 

Photography is the science, art, application and practice of creating durable images by recording light or other electromagnetic radiation, either electronically by means of an image sensor, or chemically by means of a light-sensitive material.

The word derived from Greek photos (“light”) and graphein (“to draw”). It was first used by the scientist Sir John F.W. Herschel in 1839.

Photography has come a long way in its relatively short history. The first photographic technologies were produced during the 1830s and 40s. Samuel A. Bemis (1793–1881), a Boston dentist and amateur daguerreotypist, bought one of the first cameras ever sold in the United States on April 15, 1840.

The history of the camera can be traced much further back than the introduction of photography. Johann Zahn designed the first camera in 1685.

The first photo

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_photography

Joseph Nicephore Niepce used a sliding wooden box to take photographs in 1826. In 1827, he discovered that light from a pinhole camera projected onto an element that blocked shadow and light areas on a metal plate coated in bitumen could create a pattern on the coated plate similar to the shape of the element. He took the first photo. It depicts the view from an upstairs window at Niepce’s estate, Le Grac, in the Burgundy region of France. However, his process needed eight hours of exposure to light, and the picture was fuzzy.

It was 1826 when Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre contacted Niépce.

 

Source: https://wallpaperstock.net/old-port-wallpapers_w34931.html

By the time Niepce died in 1833, the partners had yet to come up with a practical, reliable process. After that, Louis Daguerre did his part in improving the camera in the year 1835. In contrast to modern photography, which produces a negative, daguerreotype produced a positive that made it impossible to have many copies. The photo taken by Louis Daguerre in 1838 is believed to be the earliest photograph of a living person – meaning this could technically be considered the first example of portraiture photography.

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_Daguerre

Selfie is not as new as many people think. As early as 1839, a selfie was clicked by Robert Cornelius.

Up until the 1840s, presidents' portraits had to be painted. But once photography started, history could finally record the exact image of the leaders of the United States. John Quincy Adams was the first U.S. president to be photographed.

As photography developed it became to be colorful as well. Although color photography was explored throughout the 19th century, initial experiments in color resulted in projected temporary images, rather than permanent color images.The first color photo, an additive projected image of a tartan ribbon, was taken in 1861 by the Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell.

 

Source: https://textilis.net/category/london-history/

 

Photography undergoes extraordinary changes in the early part of the twentieth century. The first all-metal cine camera was the Bell & Howell Standard of 1911-12.

In 1923 Eastman Kodak introduced a 16mm film stock, principally as a lower cost alternative to 35mm and several camera makers launched models to take advantage of the new market of amateur movie-makers. George Eastman invented the Kodak camera, helping make photography accessible to the public.

 

Source: https://www.biography.com/people/george-eastman-9283428

Everyday technology is changing, so does photography. Twenty years ago we took a photograph, had it printed, and kept it safe in an album. We used photographic film. It is a strip or sheet of transparent plastic film base coated on one side with a gelatin emulsion containing microscopically small light-sensitive silver halide crystals.

 

 

In 1727, Johann Henrich Schulze, a German doctor, mixed chalk, silver, and nitric acid in a flask to make silver nitrate. Photographic film captures the image formed by light reflecting from the surface being photographed. A film's sensitivity to colors is set during the manufacturing process, and it differs between color film and black and white (monochromatic) film.

Now we can take photos any time, by just moving one finger. Besides, we can take as many photos as we wish. Instead of paper albums, thousands of photos can be kept on a mobile phone or a computer.

Digital cameras

 

 

Digital photography has proven to be one of the most world-changing technological breakthroughs of the late 20th century.The history of the digital camera began with Eugene F. Lally of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

His idea was to take pictures of the planets and stars while travelling through space to give information about the astronauts' position.

Steven Sasson as an engineer at Eastman Kodak invented and built the first electronic camera using a charge-coupled device image sensor in 1975.

In 1986, Japanese company Nikon introduced the first digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, the Nikon SVC.

Photography completely changed when it was possible to take photos by our mobile phones. Entrepreneur Philippe Kahn is the man we want to thank for being able to take beautiful pictures on your mobile phone.

In 1997, Philippe Kahn was stuck in a Northern California maternity ward with nothing to do. Like any invention, the setup was crude: a digital camera connected to this flip-top cell phone, synched by a few lines of code he had written on his laptop in the hospital. Kahn’s device captured his daughter’s first moments.

Source: https://mhealthinsight.com/2013/03/08/the-camera-phone-is-15-years-old-happy-birthday-sophie-kahn/

 

Photography completely changed when it was possible to take photos by our mobile phones. Entrepreneur Philippe Kahn is the man we want to thank for being able to take beautiful pictures on your mobile phone.

In 1997, Philippe Kahn was stuck in a Northern California maternity ward with nothing to do. Like any invention, the setup was crude: a digital camera connected to this flip-top cell phone, synched by a few lines of code he had written on his laptop in the hospital. Kahn’s device captured his daughter’s first moments.

Now ... we have smartphones. We’re taking more photos than ever.

Nowadays cameras allow us to have amazing photos. They reflect the world as it is. Now we can have photos of bright colors and high quality.

As the 21st century passes more and more people discover the power of photography to influence their daily lives.

Studios in the 19th and 21st centuries

The studios of the 19th century were often located at the top floor of a building and had huge glass roofs or windows to allow for plenty of daylight. Every studio had a darkroom, as the meticulous preparation of the silver-coated copper plates required complete darkness when treated with chemicals to render the plates sensitive to light. Portraits of politicians and other important people were displayed on the walls and served as a sort of portfolio.

 

Source:https://filippide.wordpress.com/tag/ultra-centenarian-italian-companies/

It’s clearly not just the camera that has changed since the first long-lasting photograph was taken. It’s our whole approach to photography as a medium that has been turned around.  Thanks to artificial light sources, the photographer is a lot less dependent on external factors such as daylight. Chemicals and darkrooms are no longer involved—at least not necessarily.

 

 

There are still photography studios but now the whole world is a studio.

It is also interesting to know how photography history will be in some years, what changes are waiting for us. Anyway, time will show. One thing for sure, there definitely will be changes we even cannot think of now.

 

Sources

Wikipedia, Envatotuts +, Encyclopaedia Britannica


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