Changing styles of portrait photography

Robert Cornelius was the first to take a self-portrait (selfie) in 1839 and he was from Philadelphia he removed the lens cap ran into the photograph and then recovered the lens, in doing this he created an image of himself.


Due to social and economic change throughout the generations tree is a great difference in portraits say from 1870 to the present. in the 1870s/ 1880s people’s behaviour was restricted in the way they acted, or had to be perceived to the rest of the world in a proper manner. there was a lot more class in portraits back then and photographs were used to make people seem regal and wealthy. whereas with the arrive;l of other camera options other than a studio session say the brownie came along by Kodak and changed the diversity of photography making photography more accessible to the lower class and made photography more ‘snappy’ and personal.

a typical Victorian photo studio looked very simplistic was only a camera natural lighting or candles and a backdrop with the client sat in mid frame with not much expression, and typically a large format camera would be used. typically in the earliest times of photography people had stern faces due to the fact they had to hold the pose for a long period of time, a smile was a lot harder to maintain then a straight face was, so a stern face in a photograph became the norm, until say an hour pose became, minutes and eventually seconds. sadly pictures of the deceased also became the norm many children were held by their mothers made to look more lifelike in the photographs as when children are told to hold still for a photograph for several minutes this may be slightly difficult, but with deceased people the photographer had an easier time positioning the subjects and taking photographs without them moving at all, however morbid it may be.

photography has com a very long way since 1839 to the present and modern-day photo studios have vastly changed. in a  modern-day photo studio you would find various kinds of studio lighting from beauty lamps to soft boxes and typically white backgrounds with bright settings. modern poses whilst in the photography studio can be various types be it whatever emotion he clients want to portray unlike old and early photography types in modern photography the pose is held for merely a second as opposed to minutes at a time.

in modern studio sometimes people mimic the techniques and general look of older studio photography styles. this wedding photo taken by Alex aapienza is using the Ambrotype glass plate process in 2014, and this looks very similar to older photographs. tumblr_nf5bc0sgaZ1tlft4ro1_500

wet plate, is dedicated to an antique photographic process discovered in the mid 19th century, also being a main photographic method used till the 1880s. It refers to the process of pouring a solution collodion onto a plate of thin iron or glass, then placing the plate into a camera and exposing it to the light and (at the end) developing that plate while it’s still wet, which is why the process is named “wet plate”. the images resulting from this process can be ambrotype, glass negatives or tintype. even though the process takes a while (to say the least) the wet plate collodion technique is getting back its popularity amongst a lot of new and contemporary photographers today.


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