The History of Photography

The History of Photography

The Early Days of Photography

Photography is the art of creating images by recording light with a camera. The word “photography” comes from the Greek words “phos” (light) and “graphos” (writing). The first photograph was taken in 1826 by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce. Niépce used a camera obscura to expose a pewter plate coated with bitumen to light. The exposure time was eight hours, and the resulting image was a view of the courtyard of Niépce’s house.


The Daguerreotype

In 1839, Louis Daguerre invented the daguerreotype, a process that produced much sharper images than Niépce’s process. Daguerreotypes were made by coating a silver plate with a light-sensitive emulsion and then exposing it to light. The plate was then developed with a chemical solution that created a permanent image.

This image has been created during “DensityDesign Integrated Course Final Synthesis Studio” at Polytechnic University of Milan, organized by DensityDesign Research Lab in 2015. Image is released under CC-BY-SA licence. Attribution goes to “Susanna Celeste Castelli, DensityDesign Research Lab”., CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

The Calotype

In 1841, William Henry Fox Talbot invented the calotype, a process that was much cheaper and easier to use than the daguerreotype. Calotypes were made by coating a paper negative with a light-sensitive emulsion and then exposing it to light. The negative was then used to make prints.

Alf van Beem, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Late 19th Century

In the late 19th century, photography began to be used for news reporting and other commercial purposes. In 1888, George Eastman invented the Kodak camera, which was the first camera that could be used by anyone. The Kodak camera was a huge success, and it helped to make photography a popular hobby.

The 20th Century

In the 20th century, photography continued to evolve. In 1925, the first 35mm film camera was introduced. 35mm film cameras were much smaller and lighter than previous cameras, and they made photography even more accessible.
In the 1950s, color photography became commercially available. Color photography was a major breakthrough, and it revolutionized the way that people saw the world.

The 21st Century

The advent of digital technology has significantly changed the landscape of photography. The first digital camera was invented by a Kodak engineer, Steven Sasson, in 1975. However, digital photography as we know it today, which uses electronic sensors to capture images that can be processed and edited on a computer, did not become widely available until the late 1990s and early 2000s. Digital photography has revolutionized the field, making it possible to take and share photos more easily than ever before.

Today, photography is a popular art form and a valuable tool for communication. Photographers use their skills to capture moments in time, to tell stories, and to express their creativity. Photography is a powerful medium that can be used to document history, to change the world, and to simply make people smile.


The Poor Photographer did not study professional photography, he only uses an outdated Canon 1000D with only one lens his trusty 70-250mm. He uses his camera phones Xiaomi Mi4i, Samsung Note 3 and Kata i3L (all of which were just given for review) for taking photos. Even if he is ill-equipped for photography he has the passion for it and will continue to share his experiences here.

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