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posted by Constantinos Alpha alias Constantinos_A on Friday 11th of January 2019 11:52:49 AM

Camera obscura (plural camera obscura or camerae obscurae from Latin, meaning "dark room": camera "(vaulted) chamber or room," and obscura "darkened, dark"), also referred to as pinhole image, is the natural optical phenomenon that occurs when an image of a scene at the other side of a screen (or for instance a wall) is projected through a small hole in that screen, as a reversed and inverted image (left to right and upside down) on a surface opposite to the opening. The surroundings of the projected image have to be relatively dark for the image to be clear, so many historical camera obscura experiments were performed in dark rooms. The term "camera obscura" also refers to constructions or devices that make use of the principle within a box, tent or room. Camerae obscurae with a lens in the opening have been used since the second half of the 16th century and became popular as an aid for drawing and painting. The camera obscura box was developed further into the photographic camera in the first half of the 19th century when camera obscura boxes were used to expose light-sensitive materials to the projected image. The camera obscura was used as a means to study eclipses, without the risk of damaging the eyes by looking into the sun directly. As a drawing aid, the camera obscura allowed tracing the projected image to produce a highly accurate representation, especially appreciated as an easy way to achieve a proper graphical perspective. A camera obscura device without a lens but with a very small hole is sometimes referred to as a "pinhole camera", although this more often refers to simple (home-made) lens-less cameras in which photographic film or photographic paper is used. The earliest known written record of the camera obscura is to be found in Chinese writings called Mozi and dated to the 4th century BCE, traditionally ascribed to and named for Mozi (circa 470 BCE-circa 391 BCE), a Han Chinese philosopher and the founder of Mohist School of Logic. In these writings it is explained how the inverted image in a "collecting-point" or "treasure house" is inverted by an intersecting point (a pinhole) that collected the (rays of) light. The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BCE), or possibly a follower of his ideas, touched upon the subject in the work Problems - Book XV, asking: "Why is it that when the sun passes through quadri-laterals, as for instance in wickerwork, it does not produce a figure rectangular in shape but circular?” and further on: “Why is it that an eclipse of the sun, if one looks at it through a sieve or through leaves, such as a plane-tree or other broadleaved tree, or if one joins the fingers of one hand over the fingers of the other, the rays are crescent-shaped where they reach the earth? Is it for the same reason as that when light shines through a rectangular peep-hole, it appears circular in the form of a cone?" Many philosophers and scientists of the Western world would ponder this question before it became accepted that the circular and crescent-shapes described in this "problem" were actually pinhole image projections of the sun. Although a projected image will have the shape of the aperture when the light source, aperture and projection plane are close together, the projected image will have the shape of the light source when they are further apart.



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  • Published 02.05.23
  • Resolution 1024x683
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  • File Size 91601 byte.

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