Photography

Timeline created by DylanStout
  • First Photograph

    First Photograph
    On a summer day in 1827, Joseph Nicephore Niepce developed the first photographic image with a camera obscura. Prior to Niepce, people just used the camera obscura for viewing or drawing purposes, not for making photographs. By letting light draw the picture, Niepce's heliographs, or sun prints as they were called, were the prototype for the modern photograph.
  • Wet Plate Negatives

    Wet Plate Negatives
    In 1851, Frederick Scoff Archer, an English sculptor, invented the wet plate negative. Using a viscous solution of collodion, he coated glass with light-sensitive silver salts. Because it was glass and not paper, this wet plate created a more stable and detailed negative.
  • Dry plate negatives and handheld cameras

    Dry plate negatives and handheld cameras
    In 1879, the dry plate was invented, a glass negative plate with a dried gelatin emulsion. Dry plates could be stored for a period of time. This meant photographers no longer needed portable darkrooms and could now hire technicians to develop their photographs. Dry processes absorbed light so rapidly that the hand-held camera was now possible.
  • Photographic Films

    Photographic Films
    The first flexible roll films, dating to 1889, were made of cellulose nitrate, which is chemically similar to guncotton. A nitrate-based film will deteriorate over time, releasing oxidants and acidic gasses. It is also highly flammable. Special storage for this film is required. Nitrate film is historically important because it allowed for the development of roll films. The first flexible movie films measured 35-mm wide and came in long rolls on a spool.
  • Colour photographs

    Colour photographs
    In the early 1940s, commercially viable colour films (except Kodachrome) were brought to the market. These films used the modern technology of dye-coupled colours in which a chemical process connects the three dye layers together to create an apparent colour image.
  • Digital camera

    Digital camera
    In 1984, Canon demonstrated the first digital electronic still camera.
  • Period: to

    Photography