Two leaves bright leaves stand out against a murky background in this very old photograph

William Henry Fox Talbot, Black Cherry Leaves, likely 1839, photogenic drawing negative, 7 1/4 x 9 in. (image/paper), The William T. Hillman Collection

Sun Print Sundays

Drop by our Children’s Studio every Sunday afternoon in January for this all-ages workshop. You’ll learn how a pioneering inventor created the first photographs on paper. Free with admission!

How do you take a picture without a camera? One way is by using the sun! This photographic technique was developed in the 1800s when photography and cameras were still very new. Small objects are placed on light-sensitive paper, then exposed to the sun. The objects block the sun and leave their shape behind. The paper then is rinsed with water, creating an image of the objects.

Bring some small objects of your own or use some provided to create your own photographic composition. Visit the exhibition William Henry Fox Talbot and the Promise of Photography to see how this early innovator pushed the limits of photography and created the first lasting photographic image on paper.