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500 Cameras: 170 Years of Photographic Innovationby Todd Gustavson
Synopses & Reviews
The ubiquity of camera phones today has made us all photographers, and as these nano-devices attest, the history of photography, perhaps more so than any other art, is also a history of technology, one best revealed in the very vehicle that makes it possibleand#151;the camera.
Through brief, illustrated chapters on fifty landmark cameras and the photographers who used them, Michael Pritchard offers an entertaining look at photography as practiced by professionals, artists, and amateurs. A History of Photography in Fifty Cameras is organized chronologically, beginning with William Henry Fox Talbotand#8217;s wooden and#147;Mousetrapand#8221; camera of 1835. Other entries include the Brownie (1900), the Coronet Midget (1935), the Kodak Instamatic 100 (1963), and, of course, the Polaroid SX-70 (1972). Photographs within each chapter show not only the cameras themselves but also samples of the images made with them. Pritchard uses each camera as a point of entry for talking about the people who used them and the kind of photos they produced, from Weegee and his Speed Graphic to Cartier-Bresson and the Leicaand#8217;s role in the invention of photojournalism. In the hands of individual photographers, he reveals, cameras came to represent unique styles of depiction.
Together, the stories of the fifty cameras gathered here present an approachable and informative take on a medium that continues to fire the imagination, whether weand#8217;re perfecting the selfie or longing for the days of Fotomat.
This book is a popular history of photography told through brief, illustrated chapters on fifty landmark cameras and the photographers who used them. The history of photography is in part a history of the cameras that moved the medium forward and gave photographers different ways of seeing and depicting the world. In the hands of certain photographersand#151;think of Weegee with his Speed Graphic or Robert Capa with his Leicaand#151;individual cameras created whole new visual styles.
and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160; For much of the cameraand#8217;s history, it was a mechanical device. By the 1950s, electrical control of shutters and exposure requiring a battery had increasingly became the norm. From the late 1970s, electronic and then computer control of camera functions were introduced to higher specified and more expensive cameras. The arrival of commercially viable digital cameras, which recorded an image on a CCD sensor rather than on film from the early 1980s, transformed the camera to a fully electronic device. By the mid-2000s, digital cameras were outselling film cameras, and in 2012 smartphone cameras were outselling digital cameras by a factor of six. The definition of what a camera was had changed as different electronic devices converged into one unit. The camera seems set for a further dramatic period of change in both its functionality and appearance.
and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160; A History of Photography in Fifty Cameras relates this story by selecting fifty key camera models and analyzing them in chronological order. The origin and development of each model is described in detail, along with its impact on both the art and science of photography.
From cameras shaped like popular characters to tiny hidden spy cameras, this fascinating collection from the famed George Eastman House showcases some of the most unique models ever created. On display in more than 200 images are curiosities like spy cameras, watch cameras, toy cameras, and more. Adapted from 500 Cameras: 170 Years of Photographic Innovation, this volume also features a new selection of photographs made with specific cameras in the collection, as well as typical images made by various camera types. Todd Gustavson, the Curator of Technology at the George Eastman House, traces the technology behind each one, and provides insights into the innovators behind the lenses.
From the world-famous Eastman House comes a lavish, expansive guide to nearly 200 years of photographic invention and innovation. Richly visual and wonderfully informative, it showcases 500 groundbreaking cameras from the museum's collection that forever changed our perception of the world, and of ourselves.
Todd Gustavson, curator of technology at the George Eastman House, organizes the cameras into genealogical categories--from detective to digital, stereo to subminiature. Alongside the 35mm, you'll see curiosities like stereoscopic cameras, postcard cameras, and spy cameras hidden in watches, buttons, and fountain pens.
Essays by experts in the field--including Robert Shanebrook, Martin Scott, and Mark Osterman--trace the technological development of the camera and provide insight into the innovators behind the lens.
About the Author
Todd Gustavson is Curator of Technology at the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York. He is responsible for the cataloging, storage, and maintenance of one of the worldandrsquo;s largest collections of photographic and cinematic equipment, containing more than 20,000 artifacts. He has curated or co-curated many exhibitions for the museum, including the critically acclaimed traveling exhibition The Brownie at 100. He lives in NY.
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