Is photography art? This seemingly simple question is anything but. Since the earliest days of photography, critics and photographers themselves have questioned if it's purely a mechanical, commercial process or one that is intrinsically woven as another thread into the totality of the arts. In the 1850's, the patents on photography held by William Henry Fox Talbot were relaxed. The photography industry saw an influx of professionals seeking to meet the needs of an ever growing public's demand for photos and portraits. These professionals … [Read more...] about History of Photography: Is Photography Art?
After Talbot introduced the calotype (see my previous article here), the world was in search of something photographic in between the calotype's unique paper characteristics and the daguerreotype's pristine, crystal clear detail. In the 1840's photographers began making the move to glass plates instead of a silvered plate as it was much less expensive and completely smooth. In 1847 a man by the name of Claude Félix Abel Niépce de Saint-Victor (Nicéphore Niépce's cousin) had a breakthrough. You see, using glass was cheaper and produced excellent … [Read more...] about Rise of The Wet Plate Process
In my last history of photography article, I talked about William Henry Fox Talbot, the inventor of the Calotype. Here, I want to explore how the calotype evolved within photography and how it evolved the photographic world. In the 1840's, Daguerreotypes were still hugely popular. Their "look" was unlike anything else, and society was not convinced of the calotype's prowess. After all, it has not been politically vetted (Daguerre had received a pension and high honors from the state for his invention) and financial backing was lacking. … [Read more...] about The Calotype: An Overview
William Henry Fox Talbot was an English scientist and scholar in the early 1800’s. Although he was a contemporary of Daguerre, his contributions to photography were independent of what was going on with Daguerre and in mainland Europe. In 1834, Talbot was able to create a different camera based image process that utilized the photosensitivity of silver salts, called the salted paper print. In a salted paper print, Talbot took ordinary paper and coated it with sodium chloride, let it dry, then recoated it with silver nitrate. The result … [Read more...] about William Henry Fox Talbot: An Overview