Photo Facts

Largest camera in the world

What is the world’s largest camera?

In 2006 The Legacy Project created the world’s largest pinhole camera—large enough to fit an aeroplane inside it. An abandoned aircraft hangar was used in Irvine, California, with a 6mm hole in the side for the aperture and an exposure time of 35 mintes. The ‘print’ was a treated sheet of canvas 101 metres x

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Enlarging photos

Can parts of old photos be enlarged to show more detail?

In many cases, absolutely, and it’s a great way to discover new and interesting facets of a print. The measure of success really depends on the amount of detail in the original print. A high-resolution scan is taken of the photo and the image enlarged and then cropped to the desired size and dimensions in

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First colour photograph

When was the start of colour photography?

The earliest methods involved adding colour to photographic images. In 1842, Benjamin Stevens and Lemuel Morse of Lowell, Massachusetts, were granted the first American patent for their method which involved painting the photo with gum or varnish and then painting over it. The two main methods used in the early years of colour photography were

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Most expensive camera sold and rare

What is the most expensive camera ever sold?

In May 2012 a rare 1923 Leica was auctioned in Vienna. It’s one of the twenty five test versions made by Leica’s German optical engineer Oskar Barnack, produced to test the market for lightweight 35mm cameras. It sold for USD$2.8 million. Both the buyer and seller remain anonymous.

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World's smallest camera

What is the world’s smallest camera?

At the time of writing this (technology changes so quickly, doesn’t it?), the world’s smallest camera by volume is the Chobi Cam by Japanese manufacturer JTT. Measuring 0.98 x 0.98 x 1.02 inches. It rests comfortably on your finger and you have a choice of three lenses. Running a close second is the better known

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Most famous photo

What is the most famous photo ever taken?

I guess it depends where you were at the time. Here’s a list of sixteen contenders—I had to stop somewhere. I’m sure there are many more you’d like to add. Lunchtime Atop a Skyscraper by Charles C Ebbets in 1932. A bunch of building workers perched on a girder above New York. The photographer wasn’t

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Cuttlefish and sepia tone

What makes a photo have that sepia look?

Most sepia photographs in your collection started out as black and white prints. Brown cardboard was commonly used as backing, and it’s a combination of leeching of the brown colour from the cardboard, and oxidation, that turned most photos of that era sepia. When I restore your photos, I return them to their original, true,

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Invention of the first camera

When was the first camera invented?

The first camera was the pinhole camera (or camera obscura), invented around 1000 AD by Alhazen (Ibn Al-Haytham). Around 330 BC, Aristotle observed that the image of the sun when shone through a square hole was circular. In a way, this was the first demonstration of a pinhole camera, though no-one realized the circular image

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Restoration of photo behind glass

Can photo restorers repair damaged photos behind glass?

Because prints often damaged by oxidation, sunlight, or water, are difficult or impossible to remove from the glass without ruining them, photo restorers are often asked this question. A photo-restoration specialist can take a special high resolution scan of the print. We then work on the image to eliminate refraction caused by scanning through the

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First war photo taken

Who was the first war photographer?

Sadly, we don’t know. The first military photographs are from the Mexican-American War (1846-1848) and were taken in 1847 by an unknown photographer. They were glass-plated daguerrotypes and the prints show amazing detail. In 1855, Roger Fenton, an Englishman, was assigned to shoot the Crimean War by publisher Thomas Agnew. In those days exposure times

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First mobile phone pic

When was the first publicly shared mobile (cell) phone photo transmitted?

When Philippe Kahn, a technology innovator and entrepreneur, took photos of his new-born daughter, Sophie, on June 11, 1997, the whole world knew about it. He wirelessly transmitted the photos he’d taken on his phone to a couple of thousand friends and associates around the world. Kahn’s cell phone transmission is the first known publicly-shared

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First photo from the air

Who took the first aerial photo?

Unfortunately, none of his photos survive, so the kudos goes to James Wallace Black and Samuel Archer King and the photo entitles, ‘Boston, as the Eagle and the Wild Goose See It.’ It was taken by on October 13, 1860, looking at Boston from a height of 630 metres (2,066 feet).

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