We’ve written about the world’s largest indoor picture ever taken and the world’s highest resolution picture ever taken, but today it’s all about the oldest picture ever taken. It’s this little picture of a man leading a horse, which was taken in 1825. Even though this photograph is known as the oldest photo in the world, the skeptic in me wonders how anyone can accurately determine that. Nicephore Niepce created it, and it was made using a technique he invented called heliogravure.
According to Willy Ronis, a photographer who describes traditional heliogravure on his website, “The process involves two distinct steps. First, in a complex photochemical procedure that creates the intaglio surface, the photographic image is fixed and etched upon a specially prepared copper plate. The finished plate is then placed on a hand-turned press, and the image is printed onto dampened etching paper using special inks.”
Nicephore Niepce is also credited with having the oldest photography lab, and you can see old newspaper clippings with pictures of it on Niepce. Back then, photographs (although they weren’t called that) were viewed as a way to document history, and they weren’t artistic like they are today of course. This particular photograph was sold to the French National Library for $392,000 in 2002.
Via: [Book of Joe]