Joseph Plateau is a Belgian Physicist, and the first person to
present the illusion of moving images.This lead to the invention
of thestroboscope.The stroboscope work by using flashing lights
to brighten a vibrating or rotating object to create the sense it is
This then lead to the invention of the Phenakistoscope in 1832, and was one of the
earliest devices used for animations. The device consists of two discs, one in which
contained the drawings and the other contained slits, so the viewer is able to look
through and view the animation. This created an illusion that the drawings were
moving, leading to the development of cinema.
The Phenakistoscope was only used to show basic animations and only allowed one
person the view it at a time.The image would become blurry if it was spun too fast
and the animation would have been affected if the discs were spun in the wrong
William Horner was a British Mathematician. Using Joseph
Plateau’s idea of the Phenakistoscope, Horner created
the Zoetrope in 1834,however was originally named the
The Zoetrope is a cylinder consisting of vertical slits cut into the sides. The inside of the
cylinder holds a band portraying a sequence of photographs. The cylinder is then spun
to create the illusion of a moving image on the band, whilst it spins viewers are able to
see the moving images through the slits on the cylinder.
The faster the cylinder was spun the more motionless the animation would appear,
however if the cylinder was spun too fast the images would be seen as a blur. The
cylinder was only made to more in one direction, and if it was to be spun the wrong
way the animation would not appear to be as affective and would not be as motionless.
Another downfall was the sizes of the slits as they were too small for viewers to see
Eadweard Muybridge was an English photographer, well
known for his studies on motion and motion picture
projections. Muybridge was known for his invention of
the Zoopraxiscope in 1879.
The was considered as the first projector to display films. Images are displayed on
glass disks and then rotated in fast cycles to give the illusion of a motionless animation.
Originally the images were silhouettes painted onto the glass disk, however this then
developed. In the 1890’s, outlines of drawings were photographically printed onto the
disk, then painted by hand in colour.
The downfall of this device was the size of it. It was very large to set up and was only
able to be viewed in dark environments.
Thomas Edison was a famous inventor and business man, and
created many devices that we use to this day. Edison was well
known for his inventions for the light bulb, the phonograph,
the motion picture camera and the kinetoscope.
The kinetoscope was an early device for motion picture invented in 1891.The device
consisted of fast moving film between an electric light bulb and a lens to create the
illusion of a moving image.Viewers were able to see the animation by looking into a
small peephole. A spinning wheel was placed behind the peephole and contained a slit
which acted as a shutter whilst forty six frames passed every second to create a
Only one person at a time was able to view the animation and it only lasted for 5 to 10
seconds. Also the Kinetoscope was a large device of about four foot.
The Lumière Brothers
Auguste and Louis Lumière were one of the earliest
contributors to film.The brothers are most famous
for creating the Cinematograph in the 1890s, which
developed into modern day cinema.
The Cinematograph was a film camera and a projector. The first time the film camera
was shown was at a private screening in 1895, however the first public screening was
held on 28th December 1895 in Paris, France.The screening featured a short film called
Sortie des Usines Lumiere a Lyon, and became a big part in history.
However, as this was only the beginning of film and projectors, the quality of the image
was very poor.Also due to the large device it was not easy to move from place to
place, unlike the modern day cameras and projectors.