Eadweard J. Muybridge Pioneer of 3D Photography


    Eadweard MuybridgeToday April 9, 2012 Google celebrated the life of Eadweard J. Muybridge with the honor of a Google Doodle on their FrontPage. If you do not know who Eadweard J. Muybridge is you are not alone. Google have the ability to pick people whom we should know but seldom do. At least for me this were the case today with Eadweard J. Muybridge. I must admit that I do feel somewhat embarrassed that I did not know Eadweard J. Muybridge before the Google Eadweard J. Muybridge Doodle today.

    With the 3D Car Shows site I am regularly involved with photography and often play photographer for the site. I do not have formal Photography education and this might be another reason why I have not heard about Eadweard J. Muybridge before. Eadweard J. Muybridge is considered by many people as the pioneer in Motion still photography that lead to the development of Motion Films.

    Back in the day when Eadweard J. Muybridge were one of the USA pioneer photographers he did not have the technology and fancy equipment that we have today. Yet he played an important part in the development of movies. He developed a projector system on which he could display his photography, instead of using film. Eadweard J. Muybridge used the projector and his photography to create his films.

    Google Galloping Horse Doodle Eadweard J. Muybridge

    Some of the first work Eadweard J. Muybridge done was the Galloping Horse; this is the reason behind the horses in the Google Doodle. If you look closely at the Google Doodle you will see that all the horses in the doodle are different pictures of a horse running. If you put these photographs of the horses in sequence and only watch one photograph at a time, then the next one and next it would create the illusion of the horse running. This is how animation works, to create animation you need to have different frames (Photographs) with movement and view them at a certain speed to see the animation.

    The artist who created the Google Galloping Horse doodle did a stunning job to show people the basics of animation and to tie the Google Doodle with the work of Eadweard J. Muybridge. Not only is the running horse one of the first movies ever created but also part of Eadweard J. Muybridge first works.

    Eadweard J. Muybridge or rather Edward James Muggeridge loved to change his name

    Like most artists Eadweard James Muybridge was an eccentric character he changed his name frequently.  In the 1870s, he changed his first name to Eadweard, to match the spelling of King Edward shown on the plinth of the Kingston coronation stone, which was re-erected in Kingston in 1850. He used Eadweard Muybridge for the rest of his career. His gravestone carries his name as Eadweard Maybridge.

    Eadweard J. Muybridge born in the United Kingdom and famous for his work in the USA

    Muybridge was born in Kingston upon Thames, England on 9 April 1830. He immigrated to the United States, arriving at the age of 25 in San Francisco in 1855. He started a career as a publisher’s agent and bookseller. He left San Francisco at the end of the 1850s, and after a stagecoach accident in which he received severe head injuries, returned to the United Kingdom for a few years.

    While recuperating in the UK, he took up photography seriously sometime between 1861 and 1866, where he learned the wet-collodion process.

    He returned to San Francisco in 1866 and rapidly became successful in photography, focusing principally on landscape and architectural subjects.

    Muybridge often travelled back to England to publicize his work. On 13 March 1882 he lectured at the Royal Institution in London in front of a sell-out audience, which included members of the Royal Family, notably the future King Edward VII.He displayed his photographs on screen and described the motion picture via his zoopraxiscope.


    Wikipedia Eadweard J. Muybridge

    Did Eadweard J. Muybridge get away with murder?

    Before Eadweard J. Muybridge completed his breakthrough work in film, for which he earned a Google doodle on the 9th April 2012, the photographer killed a man. History may have been very different if Eadweard J. Muybridge had gone to jail.

    Muybridge decided to take matters into his own hands. He shot Larkyns through the heart. When Muybridge was put on trial in 1875, he pleaded insanity, but then changed his defense to “justifiable homicide,” or killing without bad intent.

    This argument most likely wouldn’t have held up in US court today, but murder laws were much more subjective in the 19th century California. Thus, the jury let him go. Under modern law, he would have been thrown in jail – perhaps barring him from his subsequent innovations and motion films.

    Modern Day Photography and Films and Eadweard J. Muybridge innovation

    Today we are still using the techniques and ideas from Eadweard J. Muybridge. If you are a web developer or graphic designer and create advertisements for the internet, you probably use gif images to create animation. In some countries internet are slow or bandwith are costly. Instead of creating full frames of 24 frames per second graphic designers will use less frames to create animation similar to Eadweard J. Muybridge animation. This allow for some sort of animation in an advertisement making it small enough to deliver it smoothly over the internet.

    Eadweard J. Muybridge played with 3D Photography

    Eadweard J. Muybridge did not only work on animation photography but also stereo photography or better known as 3D Photography. Although it is a very primitive means of creating 3D he already had the vision in his early days. He took stereo images of his subjects by taking images of the same object at different angles, making him likely the first ever 3D Photographer.

    Youtube Video: Eadweard J. Muybridge

    We have created this video to provide you with more information about Eadweard J. Muybridge. In the video we show the running horse and the concept behind frame animation photography. We also show an example of a virtual tour of a car using the innovation and techniques that Eadweard J. Muybridge used to create some of the first ever motion picture movies.


    We hope that you have enjoyed this article and now know a little more about Eadweard J. Muybridge than you did before reading this article. We here at 3D Car Shows love Google Doodles; in most cases the Google Doodle points us to interesting persons and historic events, with a busy lifestyle it provides an excellent opportunity to build our General Knowledge. If you learned something today, please share this article or leave a comment!