Photography

Test 3

Photography is the result of combining several technical discoveries, relating to seeing an image and capturing the image. The discovery of the camera obscura (“dark chamber” in Latin) that provides an image of a scene dates back to ancient China. Greek mathematicians Aristotle and Euclid independently described a pinhole camera in the 5th and 4th centuries BCE.[9][10] In the 6th century CE, Byzantine mathematician Anthemius of Tralles used a type of camera obscura in his experiments.[11] The Arab physicist Ibn al-Haytham (Alhazen) (965–1040) also invented a camera obscura and pinhole camera.[10][12]

Leonardo da Vinci mentions natural camera obscura that are formed by dark caves on the edge of a sunlit valley. A hole in the cave wall will act as a pinhole camera and project a laterally reversed, upside down image on a piece of paper. Renaissance painters used the camera obscura which, in fact, gives the optical rendering in color that dominates Western Art. It is a box with a hole in it which allows light to go through and create an image onto the piece of paper.

The birth of photography was then concerned with inventing means to capture and keep the image produced by the camera obscura. Albertus Magnus (1193–1280) discovered silver nitrate,[13] and Georg Fabricius (1516–1571) discovered silver chloride,[14] and the techniques described in Ibn al-Haytham‘s Book of Optics are capable of producing primitive photographs using medieval materials.[15][16]

Daniele Barbaro described a diaphragm in 1566.[17] Wilhelm Homberg described how light darkened some chemicals (photochemical effect) in 1694.[18] The fiction book Giphantie, published in 1760, by French author Tiphaigne de la Roche, described what can be interpreted as photography.[17]

Around the year 1800, British inventor Thomas Wedgwood made the first known attempt to capture the image in a camera obscura by means of a light-sensitive substance. He used paper or white leather treated with silver nitrate. Although he succeeded in capturing the shadows of objects placed on the surface in direct sunlight, and even made shadow copies of paintings on glass, it was reported in 1802 that “the images formed by means of a camera obscura have been found too faint to produce, in any moderate time, an effect upon the nitrate of silver.” The shadow images eventually darkened all over.[19]

Commercial photography is probably best defined as any photography for which the photographer is paid for images rather than works of art. In this light, money could be paid for the subject of the photograph or the photograph itself. Wholesale, retail, and professional uses of photography would fall under this definition. The commercial photographic world could include:

  • Advertising photography: photographs made to illustrate and usually sell a service or product. These images, such as packshots, are generally done with an advertising agencydesign firm or with an in-house corporate design team.
  • Fashion and glamour photography usually incorporates models and is a form of advertising photography. Fashion photography, like the work featured in Harper’s Bazaar, emphasizes clothes and other products; glamour emphasizes the model and body form. Glamour photography is popular in advertising and men’s magazines. Models in glamour photography sometimes work nude.
  • 360 product photography displays a series of photos to give the impression of a rotating object. This technique is commonly used by ecommerce websites to help shoppers visualise products.
  • Concert photography focuses on capturing candid images of both the artist or band as well as the atmosphere (including the crowd). Many of these photographers work freelance and are contracted through an artist or their management to cover a specific show. Concert photographs are often used to promote the artist or band in addition to the venue.
  • Crime scene photography consists of photographing scenes of crime such as robberies and murders. A black and white camera or an infrared camera may be used to capture specific details.
  • Still life photography usually depicts inanimate subject matter, typically commonplace objects which may be either natural or man-made. Still life is a broader category for food and some natural photography and can be used for advertising purposes.
Example of a studio-made food photograph.
  • Food photography can be used for editorial, packaging or advertising use. Food photography is similar to still life photography but requires some special skills.
  • Editorial photography illustrates a story or idea within the context of a magazine. These are usually assigned by the magazine and encompass fashion and glamour photography features.
    • Photojournalism can be considered a subset of editorial photography. Photographs made in this context are accepted as a documentation of a news story.
      • Paparazzi is a form of photojournalism in which the photographer captures candid images of athletes, celebrities, politicians, and other prominent people.
  • Portrait and wedding photography: photographs made and sold directly to the end user of the images.
  • Landscape photography depicts locations.
  • Wildlife photography demonstrates the life of animals.
  • Pet photography involves several aspects that are similar to traditional studio portraits. It can also be done in natural lighting, outside of a studio, such as in a client’s home.

The market for photographic services demonstrates the aphorism “A picture is worth a thousand words“, which has an interesting basis in the history of photography. Magazines and newspapers, companies putting up Web sites, advertising agencies and other groups pay for photography.

Many people take photographs for commercial purposes. Organizations with a budget and a need for photography have several options: they can employ a photographer directly, organize a public competition, or obtain rights to stock photographs. Photo stock can be procured through traditional stock giants, such as Getty Images or Corbis; smaller microstock agencies, such as Fotolia; or web marketplaces, such as Cutcaster.

 

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