There was always a desire to capture light, to draw nature, so that the term photography comes from the Greek word “photos” – light and “graphein” – drawing.
The development of photographic processes began with the recognition that certain chemicals change their hue or color due to their exposure to light. In the year 1800, Thomas Wedgewood takes a picture of a piece of leather impregnated with silver nitrate, but fails to prevent progressive blackening. In 1819, John Herschel discovers how he can fix the engraving he has obtained.
One of the first photographs – 1826 – Niepce
However, the first photograph was made in 1826 by Joseph Nicephore Niepce. Known as “Window View in Le Gras” was made from a window that had a view of the roofs next to Niepce’s house, with an eight-hour exposure. From 1829, Niepce collaborates with Louis Daguerre, who in 1837 announces a new chemical and physical process – daghereotipie – which gives nature the chance to reproduce and not just to draw as it did before. This method reduces exposure times, and the picture is more stable.
In 1939, in a photograph of the Du Temple street in Paris, Daguerre shoots the first person. The exposure period, although much shorter than the first photo, was about ten minutes, while the street was moving, less a person who apparently stood there at the time to polish his shoes And two more people sitting at a table. The image is reversed, as is the case with all the dagheteriod photos. This year, this technique has been provided for free to the world.
In 1873, Edward Muybridge made several consecutive shots of a running horse in a short time. They sensed, demonstrating that it was possible to record the movement.
Other important moments are represented by the year 1868 when Louis Ducos du Haron patented a method of coloring the photographs and the year 1888 when the first camera to use Kodak was introduced.
In 1895 the cinema was invented by Lumiere brothers.
The first photo where people appear
Impact of the first photos
The emergence of these visual documents of personal and public history has generated vast changes in people’s perception of history, time, and themselves. Photo has become an indisputable proof of an event or experience.
In order to respond to the high interest for more images, the photos have tried to capture as many natural and manufactured phenomena as possible. Thus, at the end of the 19th century most households had photographic collections in three main forms: the family album, albums with views from various parts of the world, and boxes with stereoscopic cards that could create a three dimensional illusion.
This new technique surprised things that were not believed to be possible – such as the fact that during the run the horse breaks out of the ground, as evidenced by the images captured in 1873 by Muybridge.
The French’s acceptance of art was that it had to imitate nature as faithfully as possible. Therefore, an industry that could produce a result identical to nature would be Absolute Art. From that moment on, all the population, like Narcissus, ran to see their image on a piece of metal.
Photography during the war
Thanks to this technique, exploration expeditions could be documented, displaying images that could not be seen before by so many Western people. The wars have also been documented. Thus, Roger Fenton, who photographed the Crimean conflict, and Mathew Brady, who documented the Civil War in America, were the first to provide graphical proofs from the front, showing the home of the real face of the wars.
In the Crimean War, the realism of the photographs, though they did not show fights, explosions, wounds, blood (because the worsening of the war was desired to divert the public’s attention from the unfair military management of the government) also impressed those who were left behind.
About the civil war in America, historians say it has changed the war in many ways. First, it allowed families to keep a representation of those who left home, but also gave the soldiers a chance to have a picture of them with their loved ones. In fact, for the first time, images representing both the horror of the war and the bodies were presented. Thus, the terrible reality of the war was made known, and through these pictures no one could deny it. These black-and-white images have changed homeworkers’ perception of what’s been done on the front, demonstrating what is repulsive, brutal, disgusting and hideous, thus transforming the population into eyewitnesses of carnage.
Photography as a model of objectivity for journalism and manipulation of truth
The most important thing about photojournalism was that it was able to illustrate the problems of society and present it to the whole population. This has led to a change in the opinion of many people on society.
Also, due to photojournalism, advertising and the notion of product promotion emerged, whereby companies could show their customers what they are selling. The fashion industry and the idea of celebrity have changed because it has created a way to be extremely visible and the focus of attention.
By the end of the 1980s, when digital photography technology came into being, it gave photographers the chance to be more creative.
However, this change may be harmless, such as modeling the features of a face, or it can mean changing the truth by inserting / removing items from the original picture.