Recent Historical Articles

A Nostalgic Look at the Canon EOS D60

The Canon EOS D60, released in 2002, represents a pivotal moment in the evolution of consumer cameras, combining affordability with advanced features for its time.

The Wild and Dangerous History of Flash Photography

Photography has evolved from a labor-intensive craft to a ubiquitous part of our daily lives, thanks in part to technological advancements. One particularly fascinating aspect of this evolution is the history of flash photography, which introduced significant challenges and costs to capturing images in low-light conditions, with sometimes explosive results.

This Photographer's Dream Camera Is a DSLR From 2001

The world of photography is constantly evolving, with new camera technologies emerging and pushing out old ones seemingly daily. For photographers, especially those with a penchant for vintage gear, exploring cameras that blend classic design with modern functionality can be a fascinating journey. This exploration lands on a unique camera from 2001 in this fun video.

His Last Photograph on the Last Day: Hugh F. McHugh

In the waning days of World War II, the German army unleashed a massive, surprise attack on the Allied forces in the Western Theater with the hope of extending the lifeline of their military forces. This attack created a bulging salient in the Allied lines along the Ardennes Forest in Belgium. This battle, forever known as The Battle of the Bulge, lasted from December 16, 1944, to January 25, 1945, and is considered by historians as one of the largest land battles the United States ever engaged in. In the chaos of all this, US Army Signal Corps photographer, Hugh Francis McHugh, would be there to document the battle. Sadly, it was here on the snow-filled fields, on the last day of the battle, where McHugh would capture his last photograph.

Rediscovering My Grandfather’s Camera

Recently, as I've begun exploring the realm of film photography, my dad pulled out his father's old camera and passed it down to me. I never knew my grandfather, so this feels like a moment to connect where I was never able to.

Exploring the Depth of W. Eugene Smith's Journey in Pittsburgh

In the world of photography, few stories are as captivating and instructive as that of W. Eugene Smith and his monumental project in Pittsburgh. This tale is not only about artistic passion but also serves as a profound lesson for photographers on the complexities of capturing a city's soul.

The American West and Richard Avedon

In the early 1980s, famed fashion and portrait photographer Richard Avedon embarked on a project to create a collection of portraits that aimed to depict the people of the American West in a raw and unembellished manner. With this project, "The American West," his intention was to move away from the glamorous world of fashion photography and instead focus on the everyday individuals who inhabited the American West.

From the Second World War to Vietnam: The Photographs of Dickey Chapelle

In the world of combat photography, there have been countless individuals who have risked their lives to document the harsh realities unfolding in front of them. Among these brave photographers, one name stands out with a unique legacy – Dickey Chapelle. Born Georgette Louise Meyer on March 14, 1919, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and adopting the nickname Dickey from a childhood friend, her remarkable journey not only left behind a trove of iconic images, but also paved the way for generations of photojournalists to follow in her footsteps.

The Story Behind One of the Most Iconic Photos in History

It has been 60 years since the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, and the event remains etched in America's national memory. In this fascinating video, CBS News revisits that fateful day in Dallas through the eyes of photographer Bob Jackson, who was assigned to cover JFK's visit for the Dallas Times Herald and who won a Pulitzer Prize for his work related to the event.

The Story Behind the Photo Everyone Knows

It is a photo almost everyone knows, but do you know the story of where the iconic Windows XP wallpaper, "Bliss," came from? This fantastic video takes a deep dive into the story behind what is arguably the world's most-seen image.

Photography's Power as an Agent of Social Change

Since its origins in the 19th century, photography has proven to be a powerful medium for documenting human life and bringing awareness to social issues. When a photograph captures an injustice or iconic moment, it can resonate around the world and galvanize people to take action. Photography's unique ability to convey visual information makes it an unparalleled tool for social change.

The Unpredictable and Bizarre Consequences of the Streisand Effect

In our hyper-connected online world, trying to suppress information can often backfire in spectacular fashion. This unintended consequence even has a name: the Streisand Effect. And it has produced some truly hilarious and downright bizarre outcomes when individuals, companies, and even governments try to censor content on the internet.

A Review of Canon's First DSLR, the D30

The year was 2000: the Y2K bug had turned out to be a flop, a man purchased $200 million in Ansel Adams negatives for $45 at a garage sale, and Canon released their first DSLR, the D30, a camera that would go on to have a significant impact on the photography industry. What was the D30 like? This neat video review takes a look at the camera.

Mugshots: Something For Everyone

Crime docs, true crime, crime fiction, they all hold something of a collective fascination. Watching Donald Trump's recent Fulton County mugshot become one of the most circulated photographs of all time raises the question: why are so many of us fascinated by mugshots? As photographers, is there something in these rigidly photographed images that captures our attention?

What Kind of Cameras Was Canon Making 25 Years Ago?

Camera technology was in a very different place in 1998, and it was quite an exciting time, as it seemed like every month brought another major leap forward in digital technology. The PowerShot Pro70 was one of the company's first bridge cameras, coming two years before the release of the D30, their first in-house DSLR. How did this extremely early digital camera perform? This neat video review takes a look at the historical camera.

Raising a Toast to a Decade of Full Frame Sony E Mount

Sony has been pioneering change in the imaging world for over a decade. Let's take a look at why the 10-year anniversary of its full frame E Mount and Alpha mirrorless system is so significant.
How Kodak Could Have Ruled the Photography World

It is hard to believe nowadays, but a few decades ago, Kodak was so dominant in the photography industry that the company's name was synonymous with the image itself — the "Kodak moment." So, why is the company a shell of its former self today? This neat video takes a look at some of the major milestones in the company's history and why, despite being at the forefront of the industry at one point, they are almost totally irrelevant today.

Sold for More Than $500,000: Franklin Expedition Daguerreotypes!

Photographed in 1845, first printed in 1851, and then sitting in storage for 178 years, Richard Beard's daguerreotypes of the Franklin Expedition have been sold at public auction (Sothebys) for £444,500 ($545,677 USD,) more than double the top of the expected range.

From the Archives: Stories From Life Magazine's Greatest Photographers

Life magazine was known for its large format photojournalism. In 1984, filmmaker David Hoffman made this not-to-be-missed television documentary about the history of Life, which included interviews with some of their greatest photojournalists. It's just as interesting today, if not more, than it would have been back then.
What We Can Learn From the Unique Work of Daido Moriyama?

The work of Daido Moriyama is some of the most unique of the last several decades, and it is a fantastic source from which to draw creative inspiration. The excellent video essay takes a look at Moriyama’s work and how his creative philosophy shaped his images.

Robert Capa at D-Day: What Was and Could've Been

In the archives of photography, few moments have been as pivotal as Robert Capa's coverage of the D-Day landings on June 6, 1944. Capa stepped onto the beaches of Normandy and captured the raw intensity of one of the most significant events of World War II, and, it can be argued, one of the most significant events in history. Despite the chaotic atmosphere, Capa's work stands as a testament to the power and importance of photojournalism. We've all seen the photos. They are some of the most iconic images captured during war. However, due to a darkroom mishap, many of those moments he captured are gone forever.

Major Milestones in the History of Photography

This year, we celebrate the 184th birthday of photography, and in those nearly two centuries, we have seen some remarkable accomplishments and advancements. This fantastic video essay takes a look at the craft we all love and some of the most important milestones in its history.

The History of Extreme High Speed Photography

What does an atomic detonation look like with a 1/1,000,000 s exposure? If you drop milk onto a red table, do you make art? This article holds an interesting discussion about high speed photography.

5 of the Most Iconic Cameras of All Time

There are hundreds of cameras in existence, some more successful than others. However, some cameras have become icons that managed to define the industry and technology for years. Despite technology evolving rapidly in the past 20 years and cameras becoming too good to be true, some pieces of gear were so perfect that professionals used them despite newer versions coming out. In this article, I will look at five of the most iconic cameras ever made.

The Story Behind One of History's Most Famous Photographs

"Migrant Mother," a photo by Dorothea Lange, is, by far, one of the most important and well-known images ever taken, having become an iconic symbol of the Great Depression. If you do not know the story behind the photo, check out this great video that will show you some of the history that went into it.

A Review of the Apple QuickTake 100, a Neat Digital Camera From 1994

It is easy to look at modern digital cameras and forget just how spoiled we really are. After all, the latest generation of cameras make it almost impossible to miss the shot. Even a decade ago, digital cameras were far less capable, and if you turn back the clock three decades, digital models had barely just come into existence. This fun retro review takes a look at one such camera, the Apple Quicktake 100.

5 Reasons This Weird Camera Is Fantastic

Digital cameras have been around for just a moment compared to the long history of film photography, and that means within those many decades are some truly interesting and unique cameras. One of the weirdest and most beloved among those is the Rollei 35, and this great video takes a look at five reasons why it was such a fun and interesting camera.

Look Inside a 150-Year-Old Camera

It's very easy to find information online about new cameras, news, rumors, reviews, and which camera you should be using right now. But there's far less information to be found about older cameras. Like many photographers, I find it interesting to look at the origins of photography and how far the science and technology in cameras has come in a relatively short period of time.

Minolta Maxxum 9 Retrospective: A Great Camera That Arrived Too Late

When I was working in the photo industry in the late 90s and early 00s, Nikon was king. Canon was already a close second or even considered the leading brand, depending on which photographer one spoke with. Both companies offered a robust selection of lenses, advanced camera bodies, and excellent autofocus systems. And then there were the outlier brands, like Minolta, Olympus, and Pentax, all who made some wonderful cameras, but were not nearly as popular as tools for professionals. Minolta was, perhaps, one of the most adventurous camera makers.

A Bit of History About the Golden Ratio and Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds is the first thing that is taught about composition in photography. It seems to have some similarities with the golden ratio, but in reality, it’s something completely different. Let’s have a closer look at the history of these so-called rules to get a better understanding.

Ringo Starr: The Beatles Drummer Turned Photographer

Many of us know Ringo Starr as the drummer from the Beatles, but did you know he is an accomplished photographer too? I think you may be pleasantly surprised to see what happened when he swapped his drumsticks for a camera.

This Camera Lets You Take Double the Number of Pictures

The beauty of digital photography is that once you have paid for the camera and storage, you can take as many images as you want at essentially no additional cost. Of course, on the other hand, when it comes to film photography, every press of the shutter incurs an additional cost. So, a film camera that promises to double the number of images you can take with every roll sounds quite intriguing. This neat video will show you one such camera.

This 1961 Camera Was Ahead of Its Time

Olympus is well known for placing innovative and clever technology in their cameras, but that reputation goes back further than you might think. This neat video takes a look at a camera that is six decades old but features a fascinating automatic exposure system that allows it to function without any batteries needed.

A Look at the Clever Automation of Film Cameras

We take a lot for granted in the digital era, particularly the automation of a lot of functions. In the early days of film, everything was fully manual, and even one parameter set incorrectly could ruin an entire roll. Later in the 20th century, a standard called DX (Digital indeX) was introduced, and it automated a lot of settings, reducing errors and making photography more accessible to amateurs and casual users. How did it work? This neat video takes you behind the scenes of the surprisingly sophisticated system.

The Photographer And Story Behind The 1990 TMNT Movie Poster

Have you ever wondered about the photographers and process behind iconic movie posters? Some of Azriel Knight's most vivid nostalgic memories are over the striking movie poster for the blockbuster film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

10 of the Weirdest Digital Cameras Ever Made

The form of the digital cameras has become relatively standardized. There are certainly variations from manufacturer to manufacturer, but the basic design is generally stable across companies. That was not always the case, however, particularly in the early days of digital. This neat video takes a look at 10 of the weirdest digital cameras ever made and just what made them so unique.

What Will Surprise the Next Generation About Photography Today

Technology moves quickly, and it only takes a few generations for there to feel like a profound divide between age groups. What do you think the next generation will not know about the photography of today or will be surprised by?

100 Years of Men in Love: An Accidental Collection

Photos are, at their essence, about acting as a witness to a feeling or emotion. Neal Treadwell and Hugh Nini's accidental collection, 100 Years of Men in Love, is a witness to love and hope. Showing on HereTV, David Millbern's documentary about Nini and Treadwell's collection is well worth the 60 minute investment.