Photography has come a long way since the first camera was invented in 1568. In this modern day when everyone has a phone that can take pictures anytime, anywhere, it’s hard to believe that just a few Ten years ago, ancestors only had black and white photos. But that does not mean that people a few decades ago, a few hundred years ago, were not as creative, even if the tools were more limited. There have been many interesting photography trends of the ancients that people today dare not imitate.
1. Take a photo after death
Photographing a corpse was a pretty popular photography trend in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Photography at that time was very expensive and most people didn’t take pictures during their lifetime. The only chance to be photographed again is after death. In fact, it is often the only photograph of the deceased.
Since a deceased person’s body usually becomes stiff after a few hours, loved ones will often have to call a photographer before the person dies. Photographing corpses is slowly disappearing as advances in medicine help people live longer. Many also died in hospitals instead of their homes. Cameras and photos also get cheaper over time and most people have other photos of their loved ones so this trend is curtailed.
2. Take a picture of the hidden mother
Early photography had long exposure times. The subject being photographed needs to be still for 30 seconds before the photo can be taken. And with children, it is very difficult for adults to keep them sitting and staring at the camera for so long. So that’s why old photos of children sometimes show a mother, but you have to look closely to see it.
Mothers will hold and hold their children to sit still but have to cover themselves with clothes to blend in with the background. Some are even disguised as chairs, backdrops, curtains, or anything else that can hide themselves.
3. Ghost photography
Usually, photographers always ask guests to sit still to avoid ghosting on photos. In 1861, photographer William H. Mumler discovered a method of creating consistent ghosts in his photographs.
But instead of creating a unique genre of photography, Mumler used her knowledge to trick her clients. He claimed he could take real pictures of ghosts, and before long, customers flocked to Mumler’s store to take pictures with the ghosts of their deceased loved ones. It was soon debunked that the ghostly photographs of Mumler were fake. However, when he appeared in court, he was acquitted.
4. Pictures without smiles
People rarely smile in early photographs, especially in pictures taken during the 19th and early 20th centuries. There are many reasons for this. Photography was originally seen as an extension of painting and paintings had to look natural. This means that the person in the photo is also not allowed to smile or show emotions.
Another reason is the long exposure times of early cameras. They are required to maintain a facial expression to avoid ending up with an open mouth. Most people choose non-emotional facial expressions as this is the safest option.
Another reason is that Victorians (England) did not smile. There is a common belief that only fools smile. No one wants to be seen as an idiot because they laugh in a photo.
5. Headless Portrait
Photographers in the olden days crafted photos a century before computers and photo-editing software were invented. Some photographers have long discovered a method of cutting and pasting two photos together to create a new photo.
Swedish photographer Oscar Rejlander used this technique to create the genre of headless portraits in the 19th century. Although this type of portrait can be created easily with today’s photo-editing software, it A few hundred years ago it was a work of art.
6. Pigeon Photography
In 1907, Dr. Julius Neubronner filed a patent for a pigeon camera. As the name implies, the camera is attached to a pigeon. The timer allows it to automatically take pictures while the pigeon is in flight. This can be considered as the first version of the unmanned camera. It sounds weird, but it also produced the first panoramic aerial photographs.
7. Manual editing
People started looking for ways to look better in photos right after the invention of photography. But there were no computers or photo editing software in that era. Victorians in England solved this problem with… pencils to manually edit the glass panels used to create the photographs.
Sharp pencils are used to draw bolder lines on the body. Blunt pencils are used to make dark areas of the body appear brighter. The cheeks are often shaded because they often appear darker in the finished image. Photo editing was so popular in the Victorian era that almost every photo was manually edited as such.
8. Coloring pictures by hand
Some photos of the 19th and early 20th centuries have color, although color photography was only perfected in the mid-20th century. So how did the ancients do it? The answer is that they manually fill the image with color. By 1950, when color photography was born, of course this trend disappeared.
9. Trends in red shirt photography
This trend emerged after the maturation of color photography and was created by magazines. When color images were first introduced, editors soon realized that readers were focused on the colors in the images instead of the lines and movement that were the focus in the age of black and white photography. So they had to create an image with the most prominent highlights and selected red. The models in the photo are asked to wear red and they will stand out to attract the viewer.