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Conception Of Photography

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An unknown author once said, “[T]he question is not whether photography is fine art per se – neither painting not sculpture can make that claim – but whether it is capable of artistic expression; whether in the hands of a true artist its productions become works of art.” This quote, published in 1862, in the Photographic Journal; although quoted over 150 years ago, during a time when artistry was taking different forms and evolving, this statement is no less true today. During these early years, photographers were in the infant stage; first crawling, experimenting with the camera, film, and subject matter, followed by the teenage grouping. Seen by groups of artist who followed similar paths and doubts, ‘What would the finished piece look like…show more content…
During the mixing of chalk, nitric acid, and silver, Professor Schulze observed darkening, in areas subjected to bright light; these hazardous materials are the start of today’s film. However, the notion of photography was discovered through photosensitive paper developed by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce and permanent images are subsequently created. It is surprising that photography ever made it out of the infantile stage as risk of chemical poisoning; such as mercury, silver nitrate, and lye, was ever-present in development of the film media. Louis Daguerre’s images created on silver-plated copper were coated with silver iodide to be "developed" with warmed mercury. We know today silver iodide and mercury kills by poisoning the human body and shutting down bodily organs. Frederick Archer adds to the imbalance, mixtures with nitrated cotton dissolved in ether and alcohol; two poisons and one explosive material, all of which, in time, lead to madness or…show more content…
They were highly posed and not seen as art but a way create and save the memory. Clerk-Maxwell, in the 1860’s, brings into the fold, color photography involving photographs taken through filters of red, green, and blue. Nevertheless; in each of the improvements of film development, there is still the eye behind the lens. This is when photography began its evolution to a finer art form; fine style, form, and expression into the finished piece. Clementina Hawarden, one of the first female photographers, found beauty in the lens as seen in Clementina and Florence Elizabeth Maude, 1863-64. I find Julia Margaret Cameron, Mrs. Herbert Duckworth, 1867, similar to the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci, whereas form, grace, and light are used. Louis Figuier and my thoughts on photography as fine art are summed best when one identified photography in this manner; until photography the artist’s tools were limited to brush, pencil and the burin; however, through the photographic lens and the mind behind it, a new instrument is born. Although, the technique is somewhat similar to engraving or drawing; in the end it is a feeling, not the process marking the
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