A View From The Window To Pictures Of The Moon – The History of Photography
Lantern slides were the visual entertainment of choice for over 200 years before the first photographs made their appearance. These were coloured or black and white pictures which were projected onto a blank wall using a candle or oil lamp.
Nicephore Nepce, a Frenchman became the father of photography when he produced the first photograph famously known as ‘The View From The Window At LeGras’ as long ago as 1826.|The first long-lasting picture was known as “The View From The Window at LeGras” by Nicephore Nepce back in 1826 and required a 8 hour exposure.}
In the 186 years since, over 3.5 trillion photographs have been taken.
The first color photograph was of a tartan ribbon in 1861 and it was taken by Scottish Physicist James Clerk Maxwell.
The first high speed image was taken by Eadweard Muybridge in 1878 making use of a collection of trip wires as a horse galloped.
In 1888 George Eastman’s first Kodak camera used a 20 foot roll of paper – enough for one hundred 2.5 inch diameter round images.
A year later, they enhanced the camera so that it used rolls of celluloid rather than paper.
In 1890, the Kodak Brownie box roll film camera was put on sale and it cost $ 1.
Professional portrait photography proliferated despite the fact that it was now possible to take snaps at house, particularly with the intervention of the world wars when every person wished a permanent keepsake of the loved ones they might never ever see in the future.
And a few of the portrait photographers themselves became part of the war effort as sound rangers mapping the position of enemy weapons by measuring sound waves onto celluloid well before radar was devised.
In 1960, NASA changed from analog to digital signals when they mapped the face of the moon. The improvement in computer technology meant that NASA used computer systems to boost the images delivered by the space probes.
1972 saw Texas Instruments getting a patent for the first film-free electronic camera.
In 1981, Sony launched the first commercial electronic still camera – known as the Mavica. Images were transferred onto a mini disc and then put into a video reader linked up to a tv monitor or colour printer. In reality it was in fact a video camera that took video freeze frames.
The first consumer level digital cameras worked with a PC connected by a serial wire. The first was Apple’s QuickTake 100 on 17 February 1994, next came Kodak’s DC40 on March 28 1995, Casio’s QV-11 in late 1995 and the Sony Cyber Shot digital still camera in 1996.
Not surprisingly, by 2011, of the 380 billion photographs taken, only 4billion of those used analogue.
Almost three quarters of the owners of digital cameras will take a photograph at least once a month with 83% of these using some form of computer software to edit their shots, but 91% of smart phone owners will also take that one photo per month and 15% of those will then edit the image on their phone too.
These days, the development of cameras in smart phones together with the rise of social media, means that 300 million photos are published to Facebook each day and 26 images to Instagram a second.