Eadweard Muybridge

Eadweard Muybridge (1830 – 1904, born Edward James Muggeridge) was an English photographer important for his pioneering work in photographic studies of motion, and early work in motion-picture projection. He adopted the first name Eadweard as the original Anglo-Saxon form of Edward, and the surname Muybridge believing it to be similarly archaic.

At age 20, he emigrated to America as a bookseller, first to New York, and then to San Francisco. On a return trip to England in 1860, he suffered serious head injuries in a stagecoach crash. He spent the next few years recuperating in England, where he took up professional photography, learning the wet-plate collodion process, and secured at least two British patents for his inventions. He went back to San Francisco in 1867, and in 1868 his large photographs of Yosemite Valley made him world-famous.

Today, Muybridge is known for his pioneering work on animal locomotion in 1877 and 1878, which used multiple cameras to capture motion in stop-motion photographs, and his zoopraxiscope, a device for projecting motion picturest hat pre-dated the flexible perforated film strip used in cinematography. In the 1880s, he entered a very productive period at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, producing over 100,000 images of animals and humans in motion, capturing what the human eye could not distinguish as separate movements.

Muybridge spent much of his later years giving public lectures and demonstrations of his photography and early motion picture sequences, travelling back to England and Europe to publicize his work. He also edited and published compilations of his work, which greatly influenced visual artists and the developing fields of scientific and industrial photography. He returned to his native England permanently in 1894, and in 1904, the Kingston Museum, containing a collection of his equipment, was opened in his hometown.