Porter's Early Years Porter's Introduction to Photography A Love for Science Committing to a Career in Art


Definitions

Brownie box camera: Made from paper and wood and named after a famous cartoon character, this simple box camera was marketed to amateurs. Like today's disposable camera, the Brownie was a huge success, partly because of its low price of $1 (equivalent to $18 today).

shutter speeds: A camera shutter opens to let light come through to make an image. Shutter speed is how long a shutter stays open. Porter needed a fast shutter speed to capture the motion of birds.

Graflex cameras: This camera allowed Porter to make larger negatives, which provided more detail. It also gave him better focus control and positioning for his bird photographs.

biochemistry: Science that looks at the chemical compounds and processes occurring in living organisms.

bacteriology: The study of bacteria, especially in relation to medicine, industry, and agriculture. Porter was studying the potential of making chemical compounds (polymers) with a single layer of algae cells.

view camera: View cameras are large cameras used for making large negatives. Porter liked the detail he could get with this type of camera. These cameras are heavy and cumbersome, and they require a tripod and longer exposure times than those required by smaller cameras.

Porter's Early Years Porter's Introduction to Photography A Love for Science Committing to a Career in Art
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2002 Amon Carter Museum