15 Photography Facts / Historical Notes

Canon RC-701

All the photography facts that are fit to post online. Okay, not ALL the photography facts. But here are 15 interesting (to me) photography facts:

  1. In the mid-19th century, it took as long as several hours to properly expose the film of the day. This made smiling in portraits practically impossible.
  2. Arguably the first-ever still camera to shoot 35mm film was made in 1905 by Jens Poul Andersen in Nellerod, Denmark.
  3. The first 35mm SLR camera was the Ihagee Kine Exakta, debuting in 1936 and made in Germany.
  4. Famed landscape photographer Ansel Adams confounded “Group f/64”, a collective of photographers in the San Francisco area circa 1930. The purpose of the collective was to “promote a new modernist aesthetic that was based on precisely exposed images of natural forms and found objects.”Photography Facts
  5. Between 1969 and 1972, astronauts left a dozen Hasselblad cameras on the surface of the moon. Only the film magazines were brought back to save weight for lunar rock samples.
  6. According to a 2013 research paper by Drew Walker and Edward Vul, “individual faces will seem more attractive when presented in a group”. This phenomenon is called “The Cheerleader Effect”.
  7. The human eye has an equivalent f-stop of ~ f/8.3 in well-lit conditions and ~ f/2.1 in near darkness.aperture
  8. The original version of Adobe Photoshop (1.0) was first sold in February of 1990 and was only available for Apple Macintosh computers.
  9. In 1727, Johann Heinrich Schulze discovered that silver nitrate darkened when exposed to light, thus paving the way for photographic film and papers (which utilize silver halide salt crystals).
  10. High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography was first conceived by Gustave Le Gray in the mid 1800s. Le Gray used multiple exposures of the same image and composited them into a final image.
  11. The original Sony Mavica, released in 1997, recorded 0.3MP images on a standard 3.5″ floppy disk and used a camcorder CCD sensor for image capture.
  12. If a person hires a photographer to take pictures, the photographer will own the copyright to the photographs unless there is an agreement to transfer ownership (lots more info on copyright here).
  13. Kodak R&D scientists developed (har-har) the first megapixel camera sensor in 1988. Ironically, Kodak pioneered the very technology they would fail to adopt quickly enough, leading to the company’s downward spiral as a leader in the photographic equipment industry.
  14. Canon was the first to market a “video still” camera in 1986 (similar in some ways to the Sony Mavica). The RC-701 was marketed mainly to photojournalists and had a street price of ~ $3,000 (including a 11-66mm f/1.2 lens).
  15. In 1999, Kyocera launched the VP-210, the world’s first mobile phone with an on-board camera capable of capturing still images and videos.