Photo History Timeline

 

Etymology (Photography)

The coining of the word "Photography" is usually attributed to Sir John Herschel in 1839. It is based on the Greek φῶς (phos), (genitive: phōtós) meaning "light", and γραφή (graphê), meaning " to draw or write", together meaning "drawing with light" or "Writing with Light".

 

Basic Timeline of Important Photographic Developments

 

Events In 500 B.C.

500 Mo Ti (China): Founder of Mohism, Mo-ti, is attributed with the first known mention of the basic concept of a pinhole camera.

 

Events In 300 B.C.

330 Aristotle (Greece): Aristotle makes practical use of the principles of a pinhole camera by observing the sun during a partial solar eclispse by using gaps between leaves of tree and holes in a sieve.

 

Events In 1000's

1000 Ibn al-Haytham al Hazen Alhazen (Persia): Alhazen studied the reverse image formed by a tiny hole and indicated the rectilinear propagation of light. During this same time, English monk and scientist Roger Bacon also mentions the concept of a pinhole camera.

 

1050 Shen Kuo (Japan): Shen experimented with camera obscura, and was the first to apply geometrical and quantitative attributes to it in his book of 1088 AD, the Dream Pool Essays. Shen never claims in his book that he was the first to experiment with a pinhole camera.

 

Events In 1400's

1490 Leonardo DaVinci (Italy): familiar with the work of Alhazen in Latin translation and after an extensive study of optics and human vision, published the first clear description of the camera obscura in Codex Atlanticus (1502):

 

"If the facade of a building, or a place, or a landscape is illuminated by the sun and a small hole is drilled in the wall of a room in a building facing this, which is not directly lighted by the sun, then all objects illuminated by the sun will send their images through this aperture and will appear, upside down, on the wall facing the hole.

 

You will catch these pictures on a piece of white paper, which placed vertically in the room not far from that opening, and you will see all the above-mentioned objects on this paper in their natural shapes or colors, but they will appear smaller and upside down, on account of crossing of the rays at that aperture. If these pictures originate from a place which is illuminated by the sun, they will appear colored on the paper exactly as they are. The paper should be very thin and must be viewed from the back."

 

Events In 1500's

1550 Girolamo Cardano (Italy): In his book, "De Subtilitate", mentions biconvex glass (i.e. curved on both sides, thickest in the middle) making the camera obscura image sharper.

 

1568 Daniele Barbaro (Italy): Wrote "la pratica della perpettiva", which describes adding a diaphragm to the lens of a camera obscura to control both the amount of light passing through a lens and the depth of field. 

 

1589 Giambattista della Porta (Italy): is published. In this Renaissance-era best-seller, della Porta becomes the first to discuss the optical principals that were later used in the development of the SLR (Single Lens Reflex camera), as well as the telescope.

 

Events In 1600's

1611 Johannes Kepler (Germany): The famed astronomer designs a camera obscura made up of a collapsible tent - arguably creating the first portable camera.

 

1614 Angelo Sala (Italy): Records the darkening effects of silver nitrate when exposed to sunlight.

 

1666 Issac Newton: Demonstrated that light is the source of colour. He used a prism to split sunlight into its constituent colours and another to recombine them to make white light.

 

Events In 1700's

1727 Prof. Johann Heinrich Schulze: Professor J. Schulze mixes chalk, nitric acid, and silver in a flask; notices darkening on side of flask exposed to sunlight. This event becomes the accidental creation of the first photo-sensitive compound.

 

1758 Achromatic Lens: is developed for telescopes. This also improves the camera obscura image.

 

1765 Joseph Nicephore Niépce (France): Born.  Joseph, who loved lithography but couldn't draw, invented the process by which a projected image could be affixed to light sensitive material. By the age of 53, the major technical elements were present in his work: camera, biconvex lens, and diaphragm. He was able to produce a sharp negative onto silver chloride and make it permanent (i.e. it didn't fade immediately) enough to mail to his brother. (d. 1833)

 

1771 Thomas Wedgwood (England): Born.  His experiments proved that chemically transferring images of objects and pictures (as opposed to manually or mechanically doing so) with the aid of light, could be achieved. Wedgwood used nitrate of silver on white paper or leather. The only drawback was that the image was not permanent and faded to black if exposed to any further light. (d. 1805)

 

1787 Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre (France): Born.  Building on Niépce's work, Daguerre was able to produce the first permanent positive image made from nature, thus creating the daguerrotype. (d. 1851)

 

1796 Aloys Senefeldr (Germany): Invents lithography

 

Events In 1800's

1800 Thomas Wedgwood:  The first image created using a chemical process and focused light is made by Thomas Wedgwood. The image is highly unstable and deteriorates rapidly.

 

1801 Thomas Young:  Suggested that the retina at the back of the eye contains three types of colour sensitive  receptor, one sensitive to blue light, one to green and one to red. The brain interprets various combinations of these colours to form any other colour in the visible spectrum.

 

1807 William Hyde Wollaston (England):  Invents the "camera lucida." The device looks like a spy glass (Prism) and peering through it combines the subject and the drawing surface in the same view.

1815 Julia Margaret Cameron (England): Born.  Known for her romantic portraits of prominent people of the Victorian Era.(d.1879)

 

1819 Sir John F Herschel: an astronomer and scientist noticed that the hyposulphite of soda dissolved in silver salts (at this time as a mere observation of the properties of these substances, and perhaps had no idea of how this might be useful)

 

1821 Alexander Gardner (Scotland): Born.  Emigrating to the US and settling in New York in 1856, Gardner becomes employed by famed photographer Matthew Brady, and becomes an expert in the then-new collodion (wet-plate) process. When the Civil War breaks out, Gardner is sent into the field and produces some of the first modern war photos. (d. 1882)

 

1822 Mathew Brady (USA): Born.  He and his staff (including Alexander Gardner) cover the American Civil War, exposing 7000 negative plates and revealing with new frankness the horrors of war. A major contributor to American History, he photographed, with one exception, every President of the United States from John Quincy Adams to William McKinley, the sixth to the twentyfifth Presidents. (d. 1896)

 

1826 First Permanent Image (France):  While trying to create a lithographic image, Joseph Niépce made the first "permanent" image using light sensitive material and dubs the process heliography. The earliest surviving photograph, an image of a nearby rooftop, takes somewhere between 8 and 20 hours to expose.

 

1831 James Clerk-Maxwell (Scotland): Born.  A Scottish physicist, he first demonstrated a color photography system involving three black and white photographs, each taken through a red, green, or blue filter. The photos were turned into lantern slides and projected in registration with the same color filters. This is the "color separation" method. (d. 1879)

 

1834 William Henry Fox Talbot (England): Invents "salted paper print", a printing out process.

 

1839 Daguerrotype Introduced: The Daguerrotype is a positive only process allowing no reproduction of the picture developed with toxic mercury vapor. The daguerrotype brings about the creation of modern portrait photography. However, the extreme delicate nature of the image makes handling of daguerrotypes nearly impossible! The first process for making permanent positive images from nature was publicly introduced in 1839.

 

1839 Hippolyte Bayard: exhibited 30 photos in Paris on July 14, (using silver chloride paper, light, potassium iodide, and camera exposure) but his exhibition was completely overlooked as everyone was only paying attention to the work of Daguerre, and Bayard received no government support or fame as Daguerre had.

 

1839 Hertschel (France): Invented method of sensitizing glass with silver halides and first glass plate negative. Coins the terms "photography", "negative" and "positive".

 

1840 Petzval: Designs the first lens specifically for photographic purposes.

 

1840 Mungo Ponton (Scottish): demonstrated how he used potassium bichromate to sensitize his papers (instead of silver salt which was more expensive) and the ability to control the sensitivity of the paper according to how much of the chemical was mixed with water before being spread on the paper.

 

1840 Hercules Florence (a Frenchman living in Brazil): claimed he had made photographics with a camera and by contact printing as early as 1832 and provided notebooks from 1833 to 1837 which clearly documented his technique and had indedpendently used the word ÒphotographieÓ to describe what he had done.

 

1841 William Henry Fox Talbot (England):  announced an improvement in his photogenic drawing process: the Calotype(beautiful picture), which developed a latent image (instead of waiting for the image to appear on the sensitized surface during exposure). It created negatives which were then used to make positives. He patented this on Feb. 8, 1841.

 

1843 Talbot: set up a photofinishing lab for calotype negatives in Reading, England.

1843 Ann Cooke (England): First woman to open a photographic portrait studio and the only woman to be granted an operating liscence for the daguerreotype process.

1846 Calvert Richard Jones (England): he was a student of Talbot's and is the creator of the oldest surviving instance of photo manipulation.

 

1849 Jacob Riis (Denmark): Born.  Riis pioneers photojournalism using images of slums and tenements in New York to effect social change.

 

1850 Jane Wigley (England): First to use a prism inserted into the camera to reverse the inverted Daguerreotype. (precursor of the TTL viewfinder.)

 

1851 Frederick Scott Archer: invented a new process (unpatented thus making it free for anyone to take photographs) allowed negatives to be made using glass coated with silver salts and collodion.

 

1851 Collodion (wetplate) process introduced:  A great leap beyond the Daguerrotype and calotype, the collodion process delivers fine details and allows for the production of multiple prints. The collodian process becomes the premiere photographic method during the U.S. Civil War.

 

1853 The Photographic Society of London:  (later the Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain) was founded for amateur and professional photographers who were interested in shooting fine art images.  Most of these images were meant to be allegories, and photographers found inspiration in paintings (while some painters used photographs of models for their paintings).  Large format prints were made when the image was printed from many negatives carefully masked together.   Landscapes were very hard to do because the latitude of the film was so limited and the film itself was only sensitive to the blue part of the spectrum (orthochromatic).

 

1854 George Eastman (USA): Born Developed dry plates, film with flexible backing, roll holders for the flexible film. Goes on to found Eastman Kodak, which will become the most prolific producer of photographic materials in the world. (d. 1932)

 

1855 Stereoscopic Era:  The beginning of stereoscopic era, providing affordable home entertainment to the masses with unique 3-D images. The stereoscopic era unofficially ends at about the beginning of the 20th century.

 

1855 Direct Positive Images:  Direct positive images on glass (ambrotypes) and metal (tintypes or ferrotypes) become popular in the U.S. Surviving direct positives are today seen as sought-after relics of a bygone era.

 

1855 ReTouching: The controversy over image retouching begins when Franz Hanfstaengle (leading portrait photographer of Germany) showed a re-touched negative with a print made from it before re-touching.

 

1856 Nadar: (a leading large format portraitist, who was previously a second rate painter, was one of the first to use electric light to illuminate his portraits and became one of the most important photographers of his day) wrote: "Photography is a science that attracted the greatest intellects, an art that excites the most astute minds and one that can be practiced by an imbecile, photographic theory can be taught in an hour, the basic technique in a day. But what cannot be taught is the feeling for light nor can one be taught how to grasp the personality of the sitter producing an intimate likeness, as opposed to a banal portrait."

 

1857 Eugene Atget (France) Born:  Is born an orphan and by 1914 is gaining recognition in Paris as an acclaimed Art Photographer, photographing the city of Paris and its inhabitants. By the time of his death in 1927, he had left 2000 8x10 glass plate negatives, and over 10,000 prints. (d. 1927)

 

1858 Nadar:  recorded the First Aerial photograph from a balloon.

 

1858 Fading Away by Henry Peach Robinson: a very controversial fine art photo, an acted out scene depicting a girl who was made to look "near death" surrounded by her family was deemed to be in poor taste.  The scene was felt to be in poor taste because it was a photograph and thus assumed to be literally depicting reality (it would not have been read this way as a painting)

 

1861 James Clerk Maxwell: reproduced a colored ribbon by the three color additive process.

 

1862 Paul Sabatier (France):  Describes Solarization in French journal. He is later given credit for the process but it was Blanchere who first published his observations of the effect in 1859.

 

1863 Julia Margaret Cameron:  This accomplished and renowned British Photographer receives her first camera.

 

1864 Alfred Stieglitz (United States):  Alfred Stieglitz is born. With his gallery "An American Place" in New York, he transforms photography from a mechanical process to an art form on par with painting & sculpting.. (d. 1946)

 

1866 Antony Samuel Adam-Salomon: (sculpter turned top portrait photographer) who's work inspires Alphonese de Lamartine  (who once called photography "a plagiarism of nature") confessed:  "After admiring the portraits caught in a burst of sunlight by Adam Salomon, the sensitive sculptor who has given up painting, we no longer claim that photography is a trade, it is an art, it is more than an art, it is a solar phenomenon, where the artist collaborates with the sun."

 

1866 Retouching:  becomes more and more common as sitters in portraits want blemishes hidden, features softened, wrinkles smoothed away etc.

 

1866 Publicity Shots:  Specialists in publicity portraits of actors emerged as the demand for this type of image increased, and actors posed "in character" and "on set" for these images.

 

1871 Crime Scenes:  Paris police begin using photographs as a way to record evidence at crime scenes.

 

1871 Richard Leach Maddox (England):  Invents gelatin dry plate silver bromide process, allows for development of exposed negatives at a later time. This innovation frees photographers from having to develop wet plates onsite.

 

1872 Eadweard Muybridge:  His most famous work began in 1872, when he was hired by Leland Stanford (later the founder of Stanford University) to photograph horses. Stanford reputedly had made a bet that for a moment, all four of a racehorse's hooves are off the ground simultaneously, and he hired Muybridge to take the pictures to prove him right. This was difficult to do with the cameras of the time, and the initial experiments produced only indistinct images. The photographer then became distracted when he discovered that his young wife had taken a lover and may even have had their child by him. Muybridge tracked down the lover and shot and killed him. When Muybridge stood trial, he did not deny the killing, but he was nonetheless acquitted. Muybridge left San Francisco and spent two years in Guatemala. On his return, Muybridge resumed his photography of horses in motion, this time far more successfully. He set up a row of cameras with tripwires, each of which would trigger a picture for a split second as the horse ran by. The results settled the debate once and for all: all four hooves do leave the ground at once, as the top middle image in this sequence demonstrates. 

Muybridge spent the rest of his career improving his technique, making a huge variety of motion studies, lecturing, and publishing. He invented the Zoopraxiscope, a precursor of the modern movie projector. As a result of his motion studies, he is regarded as one of the fathers of the motion picture. Just as Niépce's First Photograph had, Muybridge's motion studies showed the way to a new art form.  At the end of his life, Muybridge returned to England, where he died in 1904.

 

1874 Lewis Hine (USA): Born.  Photographer for social reform, he documented Ellis Island immigrants, the slums of NYC and was an advocate for child labor laws. Hired by US National Child Labor Committee in 1909 to photograph children working in the coal mines. (d. 1940)

 

1879 Edward Steichen (USA): Born.  A notable photographer in his own right, Steichen was the first curator of photographs at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where he curated the famous "Family of Man" exhibition in 1953. (d. 1973)

 

1879 Ilford (UK):  Ilford begins manufacturing photographic materials.

 

1880 Kodak (USA):  Founded by George Eastman, introduces the first camera to the general populace. Hand cameras (that did not require a tripod) became widely available. They were mass produced and there was a bewildering variety to choose from.  They dramatically increased the potential output of images of photographers. George Eastman, at age 24, sets up Eastman Dry Plate Company in Rochester, New York. His company produces the first half-tone photograph to appear in a daily newspaper, New York Graphic.

 

1886 Edward Weston (USA): Born.  When he was sixteen years old, his father gave him a Kodak Bulls-Eye #2 camera and he began to photograph at his aunt's farm and in Chicago parks. This was the first step in Weston's rise to become one of America's most prolific photographers. Weston's work was about what lies beyond the subject and its form. Weston was for using photography as a transformative process of reducing the subject to its fundamental structure, uniting rational thought and subjective feeling. For Weston, "the thing itself" was not the recording of what was in front of the camera, it was the thing's essence. (d. 1958)

 

1888 Celluloid film invented:  This becomes the forerunner of all modern photographic and motion picture film. The lightweight material, although flammable, makes glass plates obsolete and allows photography to branch out to the general public.

 

1888 George Eastman (USA):  The most famous early hand camera, the "Kodak" invented and manufactured by George Eastman (a box camera that used roll film long enough for 100 circular exposures on it. initially the paper coated in light sensitive gelatin, the paper stripped from the base after processing) "You click the button.. we do the rest." (the cameras were sold for $25 including processing and printing of all good photos)

 

1888 The Royal Geographic Society:  First published National Geographic in the United States. It becomes the definitive picture narrative of landscapes, geography, and anthropology.

 

1889 Hannah Hoch (Germany): Born.  The only woman in the Berlin DADA group, working exclusively on Photo-Montage. (d. 1978)

 

1889 Documentary photography: (as a conscious photographic pursuit) can be said to have been born when The British Journal of Photography urged the formation of a vast archive of photographs containing a record, as complete as could be made of the present state of the world.

 

1890 Photography School:  The first schools dedicated to teaching the techniques of photography and retouching open. Only those who could afford the tuition and the time away from their household duties could attend.

 

1890 Man Ray (Emmanuel Radnitsky) (USA): Born.  Born in Pennsylvania, Man Ray expanded the accepted limits of photography by using then experimental methods of photography including the pictograph and solarization. (d. 1976)

 

1891 Rodinal:  Rodinal fine grain developer is introduced by Agfa. It is still valued today for it's ease of use and high quality results.

 

1893 Roy Stryker (USA): Born.  Roy Stryker was hired by the Farm Security Administration in 1935 to run the historical section. Stryker would hire Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein, et al. to photograph rural hardships over the next six years. Stryker appointed photographer Arthur Rothstein to draft technical and aesthetic guidelines for the photographic campaigns of the Historical Section. Stryker then hires photographers Carl Mydans (up to the summer of 1936 Walker Evans (up to September 1937) and Dorothea Lange (with interruptions up to 1942). (d.1975)

 

Events In 1900's

1900 Brownie:  Kodak introduces the Brownie, a low cost and extremely simple camera which brings photography to the masses. It enables anyone to become a photographer, and goes on to be one of the most popular consumer cameras of the 20th century.

 

1902 Ansel Adams (USA): Born.  Ansel Adams is born in San Francisco. Noted for his development of the Zone System, a highly precise method of exposing, developing, and printing B&W images. His epic photographs of the American West - most especially Yosemite National Park - come to symbolize the sheer enormity and beauty of America to people the world over. (d. 1984)

 

1902 Leni Riefenstahl (Germany): Born.  Known by many as the "Mother of the Documentary" her photographer and cinematography work is also hailed as the hallmark of propaganda filmmaking. Controversy swirls about her name even to this day. Was she a Nazi sympathizer or a documentary and art filmmaker? She claims to have been making art, but she also tells in her book "Hinter den Kulissen des ReichsparteitagFilms" how she helped plan the 1934 Nazi Party convention in Nuremburg with the purpose in mind of making a more effective film. Perhaps the most enduring contribution she has made to photography is the way her work fosters the ongoing discussion on the interconnectivity between art and society and therefore art and politics. (d. 2003)

 

1906 Lee Miller (USA): Born.  One of the first Staff Photographers for Time and Life, and in 1942 becomes the first official Photographer to the US Army Air Corps where she covered both WWII and the Korean War. She is also the first woman to fly on a bombing mission, which occurred over North Africa. (d. 1977)

 

1907 Margaret Bourke-White (USA):  Discoverer of solarization effect. At the age of 22, she moved to Europe to assist and model for Man Ray. During that time, she accidentally stumbled onto the 'Solarization effect' that Man Ray was to use so effectively. She was later commissioned by the U.S. Army to photograph concentration camps, and also shot for Vogue. (d. 1971)

 

1907 Autochrome plate:  Autochrome plate, the first commercial color film, introduced by the Lumiere brothers in France. The method involved creating an emulsion suspended within a mosaic of potato starch granules and lamp black. Autochromes that have survived in good condition are noted for their startlingly faithful representations of color and detail.

 

1908 Henri Cartier-Bresson (France): Born.  Regarded as one of the greatest photographers of his time, Henri Cartier-Bresson was a shy Frenchman who elevated "snap shooting" to the level of a refined and disciplined art. His sharp-shooter's ability to catch "the decisive moment," his precise eye for design, his self-effacing methods of work, and his literate comments about the theory and practice of photography made him a legendary figure among contemporary photojournalists. (d. 2004)

 

1913 Robert Capa (Hungary): born.  One of the pioneers of modern-day political and war photography, Capa wins worldwide fame for his photograph of a soldier frozen at the moment of death while being shot during The Spanish Civil War. His few surviving frames of Omaha Beach become the quintessential images of D-Day. Capa goes on to help found the Magnum Photo Agency in 1947. Dies by stepping on a landmine in Indochina in 1954.

 

1913 Leica established:  Leica introduces 35mm photography. The first commercial camera, the Leica I, hits the market in 1924.

 

1923 Diane Arbus (USA):  Studies photography under Lisette Model, becomes a well known Photographer specializing in Documentary Portraits in New York City, exhibits at Museum of Modern Art New York, later goes on to teach at Parsons, Cooper Union, and RISD. She is known for going where few other photographers would go at the time, to document the fringes of American society. Dies by her own hand in 1971. (d. 2004)

 

1923 Richard Avedon (USA): Born.  Richard Avedon is born. He becomes perhaps the most prominent and well respected American photographer of the second half of the 20th Century.

 

1931 Strobe Photography:  Development of strobe photography by Harold ("Doc") Edgerton at MIT. This eventually leads to the modern photographic flash superseding the disposable flashbulb.

 

1932 Photoelectric cell:  First light meter with photoelectric cell introduced.

 

1932 Group f/64 founded:  American pioneers Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Willard Van Dyke, John Paul Edwards, and Imogen Cunningham found group f/64. They took the name from their preferred aperture setting, the smallest of the time. The organization continues until 1935 but its philosophy and aesthetic continues in what is known as the West Coast School.

 

1935 Farm Security Administration:  Farm Security Administration Founded (known as the Resettlement Administration until 1937) One of the FSA's tasks, assigned to the Historic Section, was photographic and sociological documentation of the work of the RA providing pictorial information on rural and small-town living conditions.

 

1935 Kodachrome:  Kodak introduces Kodachrome, the first color positive transparency film, which also leads to home color motion picture film. Kodachrome becomes the premiere color slide film until the 1990s.

 

1935 WPA (Works Progress Administration):  WPA is created by Roosevelt Administration. Notable Photographers from the era are Dorothea Lange (1895 - 1965) and Walker Evans (USA) (1903 -1975)(USA)

 

1936 Life:  Life magazine is first published. It goes on to become perhaps the most significant image-oriented publication of the 20th century.

 

1942 Kodak:  Kodak introduced Kodacolor, the first color negative film, enabling color prints to be made.

 

1937 Lisette Model:  Lisette Model-begins her Photographic venture leading her to an exhibit in New York's Museum of Modern Art in 1940. Worked for Hapers Bazaar 1941-53 and also taught Photography in NYC from 1951-82; one of her students being Diane Arbus.

 

1943 Russian Galina Sankova:  Russian Galina Sankova-photojournalist and documentarian, photographs Russian children in German concentration camps, during WWII, in a body of work entitled "On the Trail of Horror". One of the most predominant Russian Female Photographers of her time.

 

1946 Freestyle:  Freestyle is founded by Sam Fatman and Irving Resch in New York selling surplus military film supplies. After a move to Los Angeles, Freestyle continues to this day to offer a complete line of high value products with the creative professional and educator in mind.

 

1947 Magnum Photos:  Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, and David Seymour start the photographer-owned Magnum picture agency.

 

1948 Edwin Land (USA):  Dr. Edwin Land introduces the Polaroid camera to the photo market.

 

1954 Minor White:  Minor White first publishes magazine Aperture.

 

1954 Tri-x:  Kodak introduces "Tri-x", as the first high speed B & W film. It is still preferred today for its flexibility, ease of use and classic look.

 

1954 Cindy Sherman (USA): born.  Rises to prominence with her "Untitled Film Stills". One of the most noted series of self portrait work of the 20th century.

 

1955 "Family of Man":  "Family of Man" exhibition is organized by Edward Steichen(USA). It was the first major retrospective of photographs and elevated the medium to art.

 

1959 Nikon:  Nikon introduces the Nikon F, the first true SLR system camera. The F-series continues to set the standard for SLR photography to this day.

 

1963 Instant Film:  First color instant film developed by Polaroid.

 

1972 110-format film:  110-format film and cameras introduced by Kodak with a 13x17mm frame. The format remains popular until the 1980s, when it falls out of favor.

 

1973 C-41:  C-41 color negative process introduced, replacing C-22.

 

1973 One-step:  Instant photography first sold by Polaroid as the SX-70.

 

1975 E-6 Slide Processing:  Modern E-6 slide processing is introduced.

 

1981 Ansel Adams:  Ansel Adams purchases his first package of Oriental B & W Paper from Freestyle. We later go on to introduce this well-regarded paper to America. Freestyle continues to offer unique, high value products for the creative photographer.

 

1984 Canon:  Demonstrates first digital still camera, opening the door to an entirely new age of photography.

 

1985 Minolta:  Minolta markets the world's first autofocus SLR system (called "Maxxum" in the US)

 

1986 Arista:  Arista line of Paper and Film are introduced by Freestyle as a value leader in the B & W market.

 

1990 Adobe Photoshop Released:  The first version of Adobe Photoshop is released, giving birth to the digital darkroom.

 

1992 PhotoCD:  Kodak introduces PhotoCD

 

Events In 2000's

2002 Arista.EDU:  Arista.EDU is introduced by Freestyle as a low price, high quality line of B & W films and papers with the educator in mind.

 

2005 Agfa: Longtime German giant AGFA goes out of business.

 

2005 Arista.EDU Ultra and Arista II:  Arista.EDU Ultra and Arista II is released.

 

2006 Varycon, Slavich:  Freestyle introduces American audiences to Varycon and Slavich B & W paper, from Croatia and Russia, respectively.

 

2007 Forte: Hungarian paper & film manufacturer goes out of business.

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