Welcome back my fellow learners, today we are going to learn about the history of photography.
The word photography is taken from the Greek words photos which means light, and graphein which means to draw. The word was used first by Sir John F W Herschel who was a scientist in the year 1839. It is a technique of capturing images by light, or radiation on sensitive materials.
Alhazen, an authority on optics sometime around 1000AD, first invented the pinhole camera, also referred to a the camera obscura, and could explain why images were actually upside down. The first reference to this was observed and recorded by Aristotle around 330 BC, who asked why the sun made a circular image when it seen through a square hole.
The First Photograph
One summer day in 1827, Joseph Niepce made the first ever photographic image using a camera obscura. Before Niepce individuals mainly used this camera for viewing or drawing, and not for photographs. Niepce's heliographs were a prototype for modern photographs, by allowing light to draw the picture.
Niepce put an engraving on a metal plate which was coated in bitumen, and exposed it to the light. The shadowy parts of the engraving blocked out the light, however, the whiter areas allowed the light to react with chemicals that were on the plate. When he put the metal plate into a chemical solvent, slowly an image began to appear. But, Niepce's photograph needed 8 hours of exposure to make this appear.
Louis Daguerre was also trying to find a way to capture images, however, it would take him another 12 or more years before he could decrease exposure time to under 30 minutes, plus stop the image disappearing later. He was the inventor of the first process of photography. In 1829, he created a partnership with Niepce to improve on the process Niepce developed.