Stay in the moment, they say. Live the moment, they insist. Ever thought why art is so important to us? Why the great philosophers, consider art as the only way to make certain someone’s existence longer. As a human who lives in a never-ending hunger of love and affection and also a knower of all, considers himself the best so far or maybe the best creation until the end of this universe, always had the desire to treasure these precious pearls called moments into the string of his lifeline forever.
We are stuck in this fleeting time zone in which no moment is similar to the previous one.Realizing this, our desire to preserve these moments reaches peak.The best way to record these feelings and emotions in these moments is to take photographs.
Humans are emotional beings. Life keeps bringing out in us the finest and the worst.We come across something that excites us, our most common reaction to it is to take a memorable photograph of it with the camera we have or even the mobile phone cameras that everyone has nowadays, these photographs are equivalent to what we saw or felt at that certain point of time.
These days it is so easy to just take out smartphones from our pocket and take photos of anything around us, whether it be meals that we eat, capture the perfect selfie, or to record countless precious moments of our life.
Modern technology has allowed us to save and share our favourite memories, making it easier to recall and reminisce. But has it always been this easier? We all know, it definitely hasn’t been this way always and will not be the same in the future, thanks to wonders done by the human brain.
The story of photography is fascinating. It is the story of an art which took birth from human curiosity and an urge to seize the moment.
Photography is many things, depending on its application and the results you are expecting from it. It is used in the sciences as an important instrument to observe many things including nature on different levels and wavelengths. Photography also plays an impactful role in many others fields.
WHAT IS PHOTOGRAPHY
According to scientific definition —
• Photography is the art, application, and the practice of creating durable images by recording light, either electronically by means of an image sensor, or chemically using a light.
THE HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Photography has come a long way since its discovery in a very short time. In almost a few years, the camera developed from a simple box which produced blurry images to the high-tech mini computers installed in today’s DSLRs and Smartphones.
There are many tools involved in executing a single picture. Over the years, they have also participated in photography’s evolution. Tools such as cameras and lenses have their own history which is quite impressive.
TIMELINE OF PHOTOGRAPHY HISTORY
•1816 – Nicéphore Niépce successfully made the first negative photographs of camera images on paper which was coated with silver chloride, but was not successful in fixing them to stop them from getting dark when exposed to light for viewing.
•1822 – Niépce drops the idea of using silver halide for photography. He started focusing on using thin coatings of Bitumen of Judea on metal and glass instead. Niépce made his first fixed, permanent photograph, which was a copy of an engraving of Pope Pius VII, with the help of contact printing in direct sunlight without any camera or lens. It was later destroyed.
1824 – Niépce succeeded in making the first durable, light-fast camera photograph, similar to his surviving 1826–1827 photograph. It was also destroyed during subsequent experiments.
•The first and oldest surviving camera photograph was taken by Nicéphore Niépce, 1826 or 1827
•1834 – Hércules Florence was the only inventor of photography in Brazil. He was a French-Brazilian painter. He suggested the word “Photographie” for his technique, four years before John Herschel suggested the English word “photography”.
• [View of the Boulevard du Temple]
It was the first photograph in which a person was present (on the pavement at lower left), taken by Daguerre, 1838.
•1843 – “British Algae”, the first photobook was published by Anna Atkins.
•1845 – The first successful camera was invented by Francis Ronald for the purpose of continuous recording of the variations in different parameters over time.
•1848 – First full-colour photographs were made by Edmond Becquerel but those were technically only laboratory curiosities.
•First durable colour photograph, 1861
• An 1877 photographic colour print on paper by Louis Ducos du Hauron. The irregular edges of the superimposed cyan, red and yellow components are visible.
•1889 – Eastman Company was renamed to the Eastman Kodak Company, commonly known as Kodak.
20th CENTURY ONWARDS
• 1901 – 120 film format was introduced by Kodak.
• 1902 – Practical telephotography technology was discovered by Arthur Korn.
• 1908 – Kinemacolor was introduced. Kinemacolor is a two-colour process known as the first commercial “natural colour” system for movies.
• 1912 – A short-lived 22 mm home motion picture format which used acetate “safety” film was introduced by Thomas Edison. It was manufactured by Kodak.
• 1935– The first feature film made in the full-colour “three-strip” version of Technicolor, Becky Sharp was released.
• 1957 – First digital computer scanned photographs were introduced by Russell Kirsch at the U.S. National Bureau of Standards.
• 1963 – Instamatic was introduced by Kodak.
• 1973 – First large image forming CCD chip (100 rows and 100 columns of pixels) was released by Fairchild Semiconductor.
• 1992 – Kodak created first Photo CD
• 1997 – The first publicly known picture via a cell phone was shared by Philippe Kahn.
• 2000 – First commercially available mobile phone with a camera which can take and share still photographs were introduced by J-Phone. It was called J-SH04.
A WAY OF EXPRESSING THE EMOTIONS
Over the centuries, humans have found different ways to express themselves.After the discovery of photography, people started gaining knowledge of what photography can put forward and how it changed the way people communicated, represented, evaluated and understood the world around them. The way people can express themselves has been changing over the years with the various discoveries and advancement in the technology. There is no denying the fact that technology has affected literally all the spheres of human life. Hence, it also has affected the photography world and resulted in a visual explosion for the society.
Photography enhances our ability to identify different emotions at a certain instance. It persuades us to become so much more observant and be aware of the wonderful things that surround us in everyday life. More importantly, we start noticing meaningful things around us like connections, expressions, gestures, feelings and especially small mundane things that will make us glad in future that we experienced. It motivates us to experience more and even sometimes motivates us to enjoy things that we didn’t love before.
HOW PHOTOGRAPHY CHANGED US, IT’S IMPACT
“ Photography has a unique way of moving us,
our emotions are easily moved by what we see.”
If someone is still doubting the power of photography, there are enough evidence of its impactful existence all over history. Well, most of the history that we seem to know today is due to photographic memories that our ancestors preserved. Moreover, many important events which occurred in lost time are in our knowledge only due to visual evidence such as photos. The invention of photography has a certain important place in history and has changed the way people perceive and understand their realities and happenings around them. Before the existence of photography, the world could only be recorded in paintings, words and the voices of people. Once photography came into action it literally became a part of the people’s lives, the way the world could be realistically represented in an image on a piece of paper gave people an alternative way to understand the world. Since its discovery, photography has paved its way into almost all sectors which the modern world has created like education, culture, history, tradition, communication, politics, science, memory, literacy and many other fields of use. Photography has also helped make all these sectors evolve in their own special ways. Photography is now fully engrossed in each and every aspect of life, living and even death. Furthermore, advancement in computer technology has made various changes in the craft of photography.
The still images that we know from the past are now not just limited to their usual uses, they have become much more than that. The way in which modern technology has shaped the craft of photography that we know now through various developments and manipulations is commendable and how photography constantly affects evolving technology is impressive.
DID PHOTOGRAPHY AFFECT OUR SOCIAL LIFE ?
Putting it straight, to most of the professionals, photography helps them to diffuse the objective information through the visual capture of certain things as they are. In modern times, photography is no longer just an art which is to be aced in order to pause the moments, it has long back crossed those steps. Let’s face it, in the present times’ photography has become an important part of nearly each and every one of us, we just can’t do without it. The message that each photograph contains highly depends on the skill of the photographer, no two photographs are exact same to one another. Nowadays advertising agencies and cooperates have realised the fact that photographs really do affects people’s subconscious. It is easier for people to believe what they see rather than just reading and listening about it. The visual of the product or even the event (to consider the media industry) gives people the reassurance they need. Visual representation validates the information given with very little efforts. There is no denying the fact that photography has long back casted its spell on various businesses especially when it comes to increasing their range to various sections of the society. Photography has also influenced the medical and political sector to a great amount. When photography joined hands with the ever-evolving computer technology, it resulted in the invention of wonders. This combination has allowed the medical professionals to study the human as well as various other creatures anatomy better and much clearer. To talk about the world of politics, we must have been taking the power of photography very lightly by not realizing how many times we have voted for particular candidates influenced by the photographs.
Photographs create us pause and think on the times we have experienced before. All the special memories that we treasure are captured in all their beauty by pictures. They allow us to evaluate and compare how our lives have changed over the years or whether we have actually made the changes that we promised ourselves. Through these photographs, we encourage ourselves to have a look at our past selves and concentrate on a certain specific time.
Photography affects both our personal as well as public lives focusing on various aspects. We can prove the importance of photographs in people’s life just by stating the fact that when asked to rescue one thing from their burning house, it will most probably be the photo album or a framed photograph of their loved ones. Humans are emotional and memories mean much more to us than many other things.
Photography helps us communicate more clearly, brings us close to our friends and family.
Everyone loves a great picture. Photography is an interesting way to document our lives and various other amazing experiences.
Photography can bring us so much joy. In between of a hectic day, there is just something so satisfying and relaxing to slow down for a bit and focus intentionally on the things around us.
BY RITU KUMARI VASHISHTHA