Historical

The Pioneering Photography of Harold 'Doc' Edgerton

With all of our fussing over codecs and bitrates, and demanding 4K 120 fps at every latest camera release, it can be good practice to look back at where some of this technology started in order to get a bit of perspective. This beautifully edited video illustrates perfectly how the likes of Canon and Sony are most certainly standing on the shoulders of giants.

What Is Photographic Truth?

Photography struggles with truth as a concept. With other art forms, truth is generally a non-issue. We do not question whether a painting is real. We do not question whether a dance is real. We are generally able to discern fictional texts from nonfiction; furthermore, we’re generally able to sift through multiple nonfiction texts and combine them with our own experiences to arrive at a conclusion of truth. But not with photography.

Is the Digital Image as Special as the Film Image?

In Walter Benjamin’s 1935 essay, “A Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,” he argues that the reproduction of an art object diminishes its "aura," or unique position in time and space. What this means is that if you make something with your hands, you only have a singular of that thing, so that makes it something special. It is "one of a kind."

A Full Team on the Sierras: Images From 1866

Is a photo everything it seems and what does it say about why and how it was taken? This image from publishers Lawrence and Houseworth shows a full team on the Sierras, but what is it telling us?

A History of Bokeh and How It Has Changed Photography

The spelling of “bokeh” to describe out-of-focus areas wasn’t used in relation to photography until as recently as 1997, so how has it come to dominate discussions about the qualities of a lens to the point that manufacturers have to mention it with every new release? This in-depth video explores the use of bokeh over the centuries from 16th-century oil paintings to today’s digital cameras.

This Photographer Shoots Portraits on a Hundred-Year-Old Camera in Afghanistan

Shooting a hundred-year-old camera that is also a darkroom is unusual but this fascinating story becomes more remarkable when you consider that the photographer earned a living for decades creating portraits in Kabul, the capital city of Afghanistan. 65 years later, he’s still taking photographs.

How To Make Your Own Daguerrotype Using a 35mm Film Camera

The daguerrotype was one of the earliest means of capturing images onto a surface and was the first photographic process available to the public. Using a piece of silver-coated copper and a 35mm film camera, this videos shows you how to make your own.

The Incredible True Story of How and Why Kodak Aerochrome Was Created

Many of you will have seen images taken with the famous Kodak Aerochrome film, or more likely in today's photography, you will have seen a digital homage to its created aesthetic. But how did this film come to be, and why was it originally used?

The Biggest Changes in the Photo Industry Since I Began my Career

Every time I think about how much 2020 has fundamentally changed my life and my profession, I am reminded that, while dramatic, this is hardly the only period of change I’ve experienced in the business. So today, I thought I’d have a look back at just some of the changes that have impacted my own career since I first started making money as a professional photographer.

You've Probably Never Seen Bokeh Like This

Photographers certainly love their bokeh, and not all bokeh is the same, as different lenses can have vastly different character. This neat video shows the kind of crazy bokeh you can get when you put a less common lens on your camera.

Creator or Destroyer: Photography, Drugs, and Substance Abuse

Drug and alcohol addiction often go hand in hand with art. Painting has Van Gogh and Pollock, poetry has Coleridge and Ginsburg, music has The Beatles and Jim Morrison, and novels have Burroughs and Welsh. I was, however, surprised by how little information I could find about photographers’ substance abuse. Where are the in-depth books about photographers that were inspired or crushed by their addictions?

Why Is Adobe Named Adobe?

In this video you’ll learn about one of the founders of Adobe being taken hostage for $600,000 ransom, and how Steve Jobs once owned 19% of the company before they opened the flood gates to cater for Windows and the mass market of the time.

The Joys of Shooting With a Rolleiflex TLR Camera

The TLR camera has long gone the way of the dinosaur, replaced by SLRs, but you can still find used TLRs for purchase, with Rolleiflex models generally being the most sought after. This fun video follows a street photographer as he shoots with a Rolleiflex 2.8F TLR camera.

How Did Kodak Detect the World’s First Nuclear Bomb?

In 1945, the U.S. government’s Manhattan Project detonated the world's first nuclear explosion. This test was highly confidential and remained so for several years, and yet, Kodak figured out what happened long before the truth became public knowledge.

Magnum Photographer Stuart Franklin Discusses His Version of the Iconic ‘Tank Man’ Photograph

The various versions of Tank Man are among the most iconic photographs of the 20th century, having a lasting impact on history to the point that the Chinese State banned the use of the word “Leica” on social media last year. In this short video, Magnum photographer Stuart Franklin discusses how his image came about, and the consequences of its publication.

Stanford Researchers Take a World-First 3,200 Megapixel Photo

You'll need 378 4K ultra-high definition screens to display this photo in full size. Imagine being able to see a golf ball from 15 miles away. Its low-light capabilities can also spot objects 100 million times dimmer than what we can see with the human eye.

Was Caravaggio the First Master of Light?

Light has been fundamental to art for centuries predating the camera. However, utilizing realistic and impactful light — an objective of many photographers and artists today — wasn't always the case.

How Ansel Adams Changed Photography

Though Ansel Adams may have died in 1984, his work and his impact on photography reverberates through the craft to this day. This video essay will explain how and why, in under ten minutes.

From Pinholes to Digital: A Look at the History of Photography

The history of photography is long and quite storied and something that almost any photographer would enjoy learning about. This great video will give you a look at the history of photography from its beginnings all the way to the modern digital age and is a great watch for your Sunday afternoon.

Is APS-C/Full Frame the Best Sensor Strategy for Camera Manufacturers?

Manufacturing a product range focused upon APS-C and full frame (FF) ILCs is one of those strategic decisions that seems set in stone. If Canon and Nikon think it's a good differentiator for consumers, then it must be an industry standard that is broadly followed by everyone. However, the camera market is more nuanced than this and has some surprising origins. So, what is the best strategy?

The Supreme Reign of the DSLR Began in 1999: How Did It Happen?

The millennium was yet to dawn, but 1999 saw Bill Clinton acquitted, the Columbine massacre, the world's population hit 6 billion, and "The Sopranos" debut. Lance Armstrong won his first Tour de France, the Euro came in to circulation, Napster was released along with Internet Explorer 5, and "The Phantom Menace" and "The Matrix" were first screened. But why did it also see the birth of the DSLR?