Street photography through history

Share this article Many people run out and buy a camera and then hit the streets.

Street photography through history

An art form invented in s, becoming publicly recognised ten years later. Today, photography is the largest growing hobby in the world with the hardware alone creating a multi-billion dollar industry.

How I met Colin Westerbeck

Today we take a step back and take a look at how this fascinating technique was created and developed, because proudly knowing the past is the primary way to create a great future.

Camera Obscura Before photography was created, people already knew the principles of how it eventually got to work. They could process the image on the wall or piece of paper, however no printing was possible at the time as preserving light turned out to be a lot harder task than projecting it. The instrument that people used for processing pictures was called the Camera Obscura which is Latin for the Dark Room and it was around for a few centuries before photography came along.

Inventing the medium

It is believed that Camera Obscura was invented around th centuries, however there is a manuscript by an Arabian scholar Hassan ibn Hassan dated 10th century that describes the principles on which camera obscura works and on which analogue photography is based today.

Camera Obscura is essentially a dark, closed space in the shape of a box with a hole on one side of it. The hole has to be small enough in proportion to the box to make the camera obscura work properly.

The way it works is that due, to optical laws, the light coming through a tiny hole transforms and creates an image on the surface that it meets, i.

Photography, the way it was developing, was always believed to be the killer of the fine art. However, it is believed that the photo principles were widely used by Renaissance artists like Leonardo, Michelangelo and others. In the mid 16th century, Giovanni Battista della Portacentury, an Italian scholar, wrote an essay on how to use camera obscura in aid of making the drawing process easier.

He projected the image of people outside the camera obscura on the canvas inside of it camera obscura was a rather big room in this case and then drew over the image or tried to copy it. The method is quite similar to that which was used in the Retroscope drawing in the animation industry in early twentieth century.

The process of using camera obscura looked very strange and frightening for the people at those times and the Giovanni Battista had to drop the idea after he was arrested and prosecuted on a charge of sorcery. This is a picture of camera obscura in action the way it was used back then.

Even though only few of the Renaissance artists admitted they used camera obscura as an aid in drawing, it is believed most of them did. The reason for not openly admitting it was the fear of being charged of association with occultism or simply not wanting to admit something many artists called cheating.

Today we can state that camera obscura was a prototype of the modern photo camera. Even though it seems useless today, many people still find it amusing and use it for artistic reasons or simply for fun.

Installing film and permanently capturing an image was a logical progression. If you feel like giving the camera obscura a go, you can see how to build it following this link. The Invention of the Camera The first photo picture - as we know it - was taken in by a French inventor Joseph Niepce.

It depicts a view from the window at Le Gras. There is little merit in this picture other than the fact that it is the first photograph taken and preserved. Due to the technical issues the exposure had to last for eight hours, so the sun in the picture had time to move from east to west, appearing to shine on both sides of the building in the picture.

There is, of course, no composition as photography at the time could not be seen as art but rather as technical innovation. Niepce came up with the idea of using a petroleum derivative called "Bitumen of Judea".

Bitumen hardens with exposure to light so the unhardened material was then washed away. One of the numerous problems with this method was that the metal plate was heavy, expensive to produce, and took a lot of time to polish.If you are a beginner in street photography, all you need is this guide to get started.

The History of Street Photography; A Letter to My 18 Year Old Self: If I Started Street Photography All Over Again You can use practically any camera for street photography. I know some street photographers who only shoot with their smartphones and.

Has Street Photography changed through history? The objective of this essay is to explore this question through comparing and analyzing Street Photography of differing eras in history. From the very beginning of Photography in its infancy through to modern Photography with a focus centering upon Street Photography.

This rich history has been captured in the book "Bystander: A History of Street Photography," a collection of over images compiled by photographer Joel Meyerowitz and writer Colin Westerbeck.

A new chapter in the history of street photography The brave new world of photography and social media I think there is a new chapter unfolding in the history of street photography.

History of photography | Inventions & Events |

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Through Ken’s extensive knowledge and personal experience of the city where he was born and was bred, and has lived through. Students walking across the grounds of Queen’s University, Belfast. City workers at Friars Bush Graveyard. London street photography through the ages Roaming urchins, social struggles, unlikely encounters: London's street photographers have captured the capital’s history as it happens. © Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved. CNN Sans ™ & © Cable News Network.

Try these popular cities instead: The Latest. Put History in its place.

Street photography through history

WhatWasThere ties historical photos to Google Maps, allowing you to tour familiar streets to see how they appeared in the past. While recently in Belfast, I took a history and political tour with Ken who has been running Harpers Belfast Taxi Tours for decades.

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