To see larger versions of these photographs, see the above slideshow.The word “photography” might bring to mind the stark granite…By Yvonne Bang
To see larger versions of these photographs, see the above slideshow.
The word “photography” might bring to mind the stark granite of an Ansel Adams photograph, or perhaps the memory of a childhood vacation. But the camera is also a scientific tool, whose progress can, in one sense, be measured by its ability to freeze ever-smaller fragments of time for our observation. In 1826, Joseph-Nicéphore Niépce needed at least eight hours to create an imprint of the view from the upstairs window of his Burgundy chateau onto a pewter plate coated with bitumen. Today, we can capture photos with an exposure time of a trillionth of a second, and are at the brink of attosecond photography—that is, snapshots taken 10 billion trillion times faster than those first grainy images in the east of France.
We’ve selected an assortment of photographic images that, at the time they were taken, were breakthroughs in speed.
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