Early Norfolk Photographs
1840 - 1860
Artists' Aids
camera obscura Camera Obscura
The photographic camera evolved from the portable camera obscura which had its beginnings in the late 17th century CE. As long ago as the 5th century BCE in China, Mo Ti and Chouang Chou saw an optical image which had been projected through a pinhole onto a screen in a dark place. They had witnessed a natural process that was central to the development of the camera obscura (L. ‘dark chamber’) which projects a two dimensional, inverted and laterally reversed, full colour representation of the exterior three-dimensional space. The additional dimension of time is involved, as any movement is projected in the image. ┬áIn 1545 R. G. Frisius1 published an engraving of the safe observation of a solar eclipse using a camera obscura.

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Camera lucidaCamera Lucida
William Hyde Wollaston FRCP, FRS, (1766-1828) was motivated to invent the camera lucida by his lamentable ability to draw1. William was the son of the Reverend Francis Wollaston, FRS, who married Althea Hyde. In the late 1750s they moved from London to East Dereham, Norfolk as Francis planned a large family that he felt would flourish best in a country setting. William was the third of seventeen children.

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