CAMERA – A History of Photography from Daguerreotype to Digital

Camera – Todd Gustavson 2009 book published by Sterling Innovation NYC London

Toronto. At our May 1999 meeting we had the pleasure of hearing Todd Gustavson talk about the Cameras of George Eastman House (GEH). A decade later in 2009, Todd published a book titled “CAMERA – A History of Photography from Daguerreotype to Digital” when he was the Technology Curator at GEH.

This book covers the history of photography from its beginnings in 1839 to 2009 with an American perspective. The book is profusely illustrated with examples of cameras and prints from the vast GEH collection. The cameras are to a large extent American manufacture and in later times often of Kodak manufacture.

Many of the cameras featured I saw at the PHSC meetings and fairs over the past decades. Some I was tempted to buy, others to handle and look over in awe.

The book wraps up with the Kodak EasyShare One camera – the first camera to offer wifi and image uploading with a 3x optical zoom lens and 4 MPX sensor. While smart phones of the day could upload images, their built-in cameras used plastic lenses, lower pixel counts, and tiny sensors. The last essay, titled The Future of Image Capture by Alex Gerard is especially timely. The key to the essay is the concept that future digital cameras will more closely match the human eye in terms of resolution and sensitivity.


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