World Photography Day commemorates the invention of the daguerreotype, a photographic process developed by Louis Daguerre in 1837 that marked a significant milestone in the history of photography. The day is dedicated to the art and science of photography.
World Photography Day is celebrated every year on August 19.
World Photography Day commemorates the announcement of the daguerreotype process to the public on August 19, 1839, by the French Academy of Sciences. The daguerreotype process was one of the earliest methods of capturing permanent images on a light-sensitive surface.
The day traces its origins to 1837 when the first ever photographic process, the ‘Daguerreotype’ was developed by the Frenchmen Louis Daguerre and Joseph Nicephore Niepce. On January 9, 1839, the French Academy of Sciences announced this process, and later in the same year, the French government purchased the patent for the invention and gave it as a gift, “free to the world.”
However, the first durable colour photograph was taken in the year 1861 and there is even speculation about the first digital photograph being invented in 1957, 20 years before the invention of the first digital camera.
World Photography Day highlights photography as a legitimate form of art, encouraging photographers to experiment with different techniques, compositions and styles. It encourages people to appreciate the power of photography in telling stories, capturing emotions and preserving memories.
It is a day to discuss the technical aspects of photography, advancements in equipment and the evolution of photographic techniques when photographers and enthusiasts often share their favourite photos, stories behind the images and insights into their creative process.
Photographers and photography enthusiasts around the world celebrate the day by taking photos, sharing their work on social media platforms and participating in photography-related events. Many photography exhibitions, workshops and contests are organised on World Photography Day to showcase the talents of photographers, reflect on the significance of their craft and the role that photography plays in documenting history, culture and personal experiences.
This day, people from all walks of life come together to appreciate the visual storytelling that photography offers and celebrate the photographers who capture moments that inspire, inform and provoke emotions while recognising the impact that their work has on the world.