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Appendix: A Brief History of Photography
1946-B59B, Herbert Hoover traveled in a plane called the "Faithful Cow".

Throughout history, two main developments resulted in photography. First, a method of forming an image in a light-tight container was followed by the development of a light-sensitive material that would be able to preserve the image. It took until the 1820s and 1830s for these two ideas to be united into the first practical system of photography. By the 1850s cheaper methods of capturing images including tintypes and ambrotypes were developed. They were sturdy but neither the glass of the ambrotype or the iron of the tintype was able to display a picture with good photographic quality.


A process known as the collodion process, also called the wet plate method of photography, was the first to use paper for printing. In this process, the photographer coated a glass plate with chemicals just before exposing it, and then it was developed right away before the plate dried. This meant that a photographer had to have a darkroom available whenever a picture was taken. When away from the studio the photographer would have to construct a portable darkroom. This would involve taking along heavy, expensive equipment.


In 1871 a dry-plate or gelatin method was developed. Now the glass plates could be prepared long before they were to be used and the development process could be delayed until the photographer returned to the darkroom.


The year 1888 saw the creation of a small hand-held camera by the George Eastman Company. This camera could take 100 exposures (that were round in shape) on a single role of film. After shooting pictures, the entire camera was mailed back to the company that would develop the film, reload the camera, and mail the photos and the camera back to the customer.


The 20th century saw many advances in cameras, films, and color processes. By the 1940s, professional and amateur photographers were using color film for their photographs. Various types of film and developing processes were developed in the next decades. Camera technology improved too.


Digital photography, which began popular use in the 1980s, is a form of photography that uses an array of light-sensitive sensors to capture the image focused by the lens, as opposed to an exposure on light-sensitive film. The captured image is then stored as a digital file ready for digital processing (color correction, sizing, cropping, etc.), viewing, or printing. Digital photographs can be displayed, printed, stored, manipulated, transmitted, and archived using digital and computer techniques without chemical processing.



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