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Wildlife Photo Article:

Photography: Capture Your Own Special Moment

Photography is the process of making pictures by means of the action of light. Light patterns reflected or emitted from objects are recorded onto a sensitive medium or storage chip through a timed exposure. The process is done through mechanical, chemical or digital devices known as cameras. Traditionally the product of photography has been called a photograph. The term is an abbreviation; many people also call them pictures. In digital photography, the term image has begun to replace photograph.

For centuries images have been projected onto surfaces. Artists used the camera obscura and camera lucida to trace scenes as early as the sixteenth century. These early cameras did not fix an image, but only projected images from an opening in the wall of a darkened room onto a surface, turning the room into a large pinhole camera. The phrase camera obscura literally means darkened room. The first photograph was an image produced in the year eighteen twenty-six by the French inventor Nicephore Niepce on a polished pewter plate covered with a petroleum derivative called bitumen of Judea. Produced with a camera, the image required an eight-hour exposure in bright

sunshine. Niepce then began experimenting with silver compounds based on a Johann Heinrich Schultz discovery in the year seventeen twenty-four that a silver and chalk mixture darkens when exposed to light.

Color photography was explored throughout the eighteen hundreds. Initial experiments in color could not fix the photograph and prevent the color from fading. The first permanent color was taken in the year eighteen sixty-one by the physicist James Clerk Maxwell. One of the early methods of taking color photos was to use three cameras. Each camera would have a color filter in front of the lens. This technique provides the photographer with the three basic channels required to recreate a color image in a darkroom or processing plant. Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii developed another technique, with three color plates taken in quick succession.

Practical application of the technique was held back by the very limited color response of early film; however, in the early nineteen hundreds, following the work of chemists such as H. W. Vogel, emulsions with adequate sensitivity to green and red light at last became available.

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