A man eating rice in China, 1901
[–]dragon_bone 417 1
People used to be happy?
[–]Penta-Dunk[S] 253 49
Hahah, funny story actually. Back then, taking a photo was considered to be important, like a portrait of yourself. Your descendants would see that exact picture of yourself so you had to look serious and respectable, which is why people rarely smiled. However that belief only existed in certain parts of the world, and it hadn’t reached China yet, where not everyone had cameras. So when the British photographers came into this Chinese town and took pictures of locals they told them to “strike a pose”, and they chose to use any random pose instead of the usual serious face.
[–]blazeeeit 114 34
Hold up op! So before film was invented, people were using daguerreotypy (more commonly known as “silver plate”) process to create pictures. Such process requires the exposure time from a few seconds up to several minutes, which requires the subject to be standing still during the exposure process. Smiling as we all know is a hard facial expression to maintain for such long period of time in addition the awkwardness that we experience, therefore people chose a more serious or relaxed expression when taking photos, and later this becomes a “tradition” in the early age of photography.
[–]Penta-Dunk[S] 45 28
Hey! You got me. My version comes from the original source’s description, so it’s much different than yours hah. The only prize you win for being right is explaining the same thing to the rest of the commenters asking the same question ;)
[–]tragiktimes 18 16
When a person can admit they're misinformed with such poise, it gives me hope for the world.
[–]ronin4740 972 4
Not believing the 1901... Time traveller or photo shop.
[–]Benedict_Indestructo 319 4
I agree, the photo is way too clear.
[–]PronunciationIsKey 7 26
Is it an apothecary table?
[–]digdug04 138 2
You’d be surprised how high quality old cameras were. As long they had a skilled operator you could get excellent quality photos. In this case this guy had to sit there and smile very still for a while
[–]Penta-Dunk[S] 61 34
By the 1900’s photography had advanced a lot so you’re right, except he only had to hold still for maybe a few seconds. It blows me away how many people in this thread don’t realize that photography was way more advanced in the 1900s compared to the 1800s. Assuming you had a decent camera pictures could be really good quality and you wouldn’t have to hold still for as long as you did in the 1800s.
[–]Automatic_nun_gun 8 30
Yup film cameras have changed in size and form factor but the picture quality has changed a lot less than people would think. Digital is where a lot of the big strides have been made.