Today is Word Photography Day! Since 2010, August 19th is celebrated, internationally, as World Photography Day. Now I am not one for labeling days or focusing on only one day to celebrate something I love. Which is why I don’t really celebrate my birthday either. I find reasons to celebrate more often than waiting for this one day in the year. But, that doesn’t change the fact that there is a date on which I was born and it means something. So. The point is, we all need a reason to celebrate. To mark an achievement. Acknowledge our work and life. Honestly, I didn’t even know there was a “World Photography Day” and I certainly did not know what date it was on. I recently did a photo gig for Google India and was chatting with someone from the team last night and THEY mentioned that maybe I’d like to post a photograph I’d shot on the Google Pixel to commemorate the day on my feed?
I really wanted to do something. And posting just one photograph is totally not my style. After reading up a bit about how the World Photography Day came about, I decided to dig through my phone archives and find at least a handful of relevant photographs. I thought it would be nice to share what I’d just learned and accompany those “history tidbits” with photographs I’d shot.
I published seven updates on my Instagram and on my Twitter. Twitter doesn’t allow larger captions, so all the history details were published on Instagram. I wasn’t planning on blogging the images but I thought it would a lost chance to document what I had learned and a good excuse to add the images to the blog in one blog post.
I thoroughly enjoyed this mini-campaign of sorts. If I had to do a proper campaign, this is how I’d do it. I might agonize over the details a bit more but till last night I didn’t even know about this “day”, so I’m pretty pleased with the results at such short notice.
My current primary mobile device is the Google Pixel XL and when I am not on client photography assignments, this is the camera I use. The quality of the images is stunning undoubtedly. Google has an identifying hashtag that they encourage Pixel photographers to use when posting on Instagram. See #TeamPixel on Instagram if you’d like to check out other photographers sharing their work shot on the Pixel from across the globe.
The captions on the photographs I published on Instagram and Twitter are published below. Enjoy!
Above, One. Flowers. Parents’ home. August 19th, the world over, is observed as World Photography Day & it originates from the invention of the Daguerreotype, a photographic process developed by Frenchmen Louis Daguerre and Joseph Nicephore Niepce in the year 1837. Today, in 2017, I’m sharing some history & showing off phone photography skills – this is part one in a series of seven updates today. Louis & Joseph would flip out if they saw what we can do with tiny devices in the palms of our hands.
Below, Two. Tea-leaf infuser at a friend’s home. Sunglasses. On January 9, 1839, the French Academy of Sciences announced the Daguerreotype process. On August 19, the French government purchased the patent and announced the invention as a gift “free to the world”. How very cool and awesome of the French! Their free gift set the path for letting people like me (photographers), make a living!
Above, Three. Metro station wall. Fire hydrant. Sky. The Daguerreotype wasn’t the first permanent photographic image though. In 1826, Niepce had captured the earliest known permanent photograph titled “View from the Window at Le Gras” using a process called heliography. The process used Bitumen of Judea, a naturally occurring asphalt, as a coating on glass or metal. It hardened in proportion to its exposure to light. When the plate was washed with oil of lavender, only the hardened areas remained.
Below, Four. Cat on a table. (@anupriyakapur‘s cat Leo). The first durable colour photograph was taken by Thomas Sutton in 1861. It was a set of three black & white photographs taken through red, green & blue filters. But photographic emulsions in those years were insensitive to the spectrum, so the result was imperfect and the demonstration was, sadly, soon forgotten.
Above, Five. Flower arrangement. On August 19, 2010 World Photo Day (the organization) hosted its first global online gallery. Almost 270 photographers shared their pictures and people from over 100 countries visited the website. This marked the first official, globally reaching World Photo Day.
Below, Six. Lights. Mirror. As early as 1839, a selfie was clicked by American Robert Cornelius. Cornelius set his camera up, took the image by removing the lens cap and then running into frame. On the back he wrote “The first light picture ever taken 1839”. Robert would be pleased to know that we no longer have to run around to get a decent selfie and that we can simply hold the camera in the palm of our hand.
Above, Seven. Glass lines. The first digital photograph was taken in 1957; almost 20 years before Kodak’s engineer invented the first digital camera. The first digital photo is actually a digital scan of a shot initially taken on film which depicts Russell Kirsch’s son and has a resolution of 176×176.
That’s wrap. For now.
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