Origins of color photography

First color photo

The first color photograph made by the three-color method suggested by James Clerk Maxwell in 1855, taken in 1861 by Thomas Sutton. The subject is a colored ribbon, usually described as a tartan ribbon.

In Scotland, James Clerk Maxwell experiments with an additive color process to produce positive images, using three glass plate negatives exposed through red-, green- and blue-colored water filters.
In France, Auguste and Louis Jean Lumière patent Autochrome, a process that uses colored starch in glass plate film emulsion to filter light. Marketed by 1907, this is the first commercial success for color photography.
Kodak develops a panchromatic film emulsion, sensitive to red, green, and blue light.
Leopold Godowsky, Jr. and Leopold Mannes create a film with three color-sensitive emulsion layers, and Kodachrome film is born.
The Polaroid Corporation is founded by Edwin Herbert Land in Massachusetts.
In Oregon, William Gruber invents the View-Master, and collaborates with Harold Graves, President of Sawyer’s Photographic Services, to market it.
Polaroid introduces Polacolor Type 48, the first instant color film.
Scitex Corporation, Ltd. is founded in Israel.
Early Mac with PhotoShop v. 1
Adobe Photoshop 1.0 for the Macintosh computer is released.
1991 Kodak launches the DCS-100 1.3 megapixel camera, the first commercially available digital SLR camera (based on a Nikon F3 body).
Nikon announces the D1 2.7 megapixel camera, its first commercially viable digital SLR.
Kodak takes Kodachrome 25 off the market.
Canon launches the EOS 1Ds 11 megapixel camera, the first digital 35mm SLR with full-frame sensor.
Kodak announces it will no longer sell reloadable 35mm cameras in North America and Western Europe by 2005.
Flickr photo-sharing website is launched by husband and wife team, Stewart Butterfield and Caterina Fake.
October 22, 2004
The very last slide projector rolls off the Kodak assembly line and is donated to the Smithsonian Institution at a ceremony at the George Eastman House in Rochester, N.Y.
May 9, 2005
Kodak takes Kodachrome Super 8 film off the market. Laboratory development of this film is available until 2007.