Photography has been a medium of limitless possibilities since it was originally invented in the early 1800 s. To celebrate the amazing history of photography and photographic science, we have assembled twenty photographic ‘firsts’ from over the past two centuries.
1. The First Photograph
The world’s first photograph made in a camera was taken in 1826 by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce.
2. The First Color Photograph
The first color photograph was taken by the mathematical physicist, James Clerk Maxwell. The piece above is considered the first durable color photograph and was envied by Maxwell at a lecture in 1861.
3. The First Cape Canaveral Launch Photograph
NASA photographers snapped the first photograph of a Cape Canaveral launch in July of 1950.
4. The First Photograph of a Person
The first photograph of a human appeared above in a snapshot captured by Louis Daguerre.
5. The First Self Portrait Photograph
Before ‘selfies’ were all the rage, Robert Cornelius set up a camera and took the world’s first self-portrait in the back of a business on Chestnut Street in Center City, Philadelphia.
6. The First Aerial Photograph
The first aerial photograph was not taken by drone, but instead by hot air balloon in 1860. This aerial photograph depicts the town of Boston from 2,000 feet. The photographer, James Wallace Black, titled his work “Boston, as the Eagle and the Wild Goose See It”.
7. The First Sun Photograph
The first photograph of our sun was taken by French Physicists Louis Fizeau and Leon Foucault on April 2nd, 1845.
8. The First Space Photograph
The first photograph from space was taken by the V-2 #13 rocket, which was launched in October, 24th of 1946. The photo depicts the Earth in black-and-white from an altitude of 65 miles. The camera that captured the shot was a 35 mm motion picture camera that snapped a frame every second and a half as the rocket climbed straight up into the atmosphere.
9. The First News Photograph
While the photojournalist’s name may have slipped away, his work has not. This photograph taken in 1847
10. The First Lightning Photograph
Lightning can be an exciting subject to capture and the first photographer to grab a snapshot did so in 1882.