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The History of Photography

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Photography comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphein ("to draw"). It is a process of capturing and recording images by the action of light and reflection on a sensitive material.

A lot of your students probably take photos themselves, be it with their cellular phones or digital cameras. These are useful gadgets, especially when it comes to documenting a school presentation or coming up with necessary graphics for school projects.
For further appreciation on photography, below is a timeline on its history:

1826: First Permanent Image

French inventor Joseph Nicéphore Niépce is regarded as the first person to come up with a successful permanent photograph. He used a camera obscura (darkened chamber room) to burn a permanent image onto a chemical-coated pewter plate. He coined this technique as heliography, which means "sun drawing."

I839: First Photo of a Person

Daguerreotype is the first practical process of photography and was named after French painter and chemist Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre. The daguerreotype requires long exposure times which mean that moving objects do not appear in the photo. At one instance, however, when Daguerre was capturing street scenes in Paris, an unidentified man who stops for a shoeshine remains still long enough to inadvertently become the first person ever photographed.

1861: First Color Photo

The first color photo was made possible by Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell. He created this by superimposing onto a single screen three black-and-white images each passed through red, green, and blue filters—red, green, and blue. This technique paved the way for better color innovation, especially the one developed by the French Lumißre brothers.

1946: First Photo Taken From Space

The first ever photo taken from outer space was initiated by the researchers working with the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. They tied a 35mm camera to a German V-2 missile before launching the rocket. Photos were captured every 1.5 seconds as it soared higher. The 35mm camera then plunged back to the earth, with the undamaged film still inside. The photos taken were the first photos of the earth captured from space.

1991: First Digital Still Camera

It was in 1991 when the first commercially available professional digital camera was made available. Released by Kodak, this camera uses a Nikon F-3 camera body that comes with a digital sensor. It was very expensive and was heavily marketed to advanced photographers.
Five years later, more companies launched and released inexpensive models that can be afforded by the general public.


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