Trivia Questions and Answers
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210 Photography Trivia Questions, Answers, and Fun Facts

How much do you know about Photography? This category is for trivia questions and answers related to Photography (Hobbies). Each one is filled with fun facts and interesting information.
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1 Which was the first commercially successful make of camera to use 35mm film?
Answer: Leica

31 prototype Leicas were produced in 1923/4, production got under way in 1925, with 870 produced, but by 1930, the yearly total production had risen to 13,400.
    Your options: [ Kodak ] [ Contax ] [ Agfa ] [ Leica ]
  From Quiz: Cameras and Photography of the early 20th Century
2 Astonishingly so, mankind began to show an interest in photography as long ago as 500 BC. What type of camera was described by several far sighted men at that time?
Answer: Pinhole camera

A pinhole camera has no lens but a small hole on one side of a box that is otherwise completely light proof. When pointed towards an image of some sort, the light from this image is reflected upside down on the opposite side of the box to the pinhole. Now here we are in the 21st century and I still can't figure out how that works. This miraculous (to me) discovery was noted by the Chinese philosopher Mo Di, and by the Greek mathematical experts, Euclid and Aristotle, in 500 and 400 BC.
  From Quiz: Photography History
3 What does the acronym DSLR stand for?
Answer: Digital Single-Lens Reflex

Digital Single-Lens Reflex cameras are a newer version of Single-Lens Reflex cameras. Instead of film, they use a sensor, digital processor, and a memory card to store images.
  From Quiz: Don't Be A Fauxtographer!
4 The word 'photography' comes from the Greek 'photos' and 'graphé', which literally means what?
Answer: Drawing with light

The Greek 'photos' means 'light' whilst 'graphé' means 'representation by means of lines', or 'drawing'. Putting the two words together, we get the meaning 'drawing with light', a very accurate way of describing the process of how a camera works.
    Your options: [ Drawing with light ] [ Light chart ] [ Picture image ] [ Sun picture ]
  From Quiz: Can You Please Focus?
5 Chimpy's first stop on his photographic journey is the global headquarters for Canon, Inc. in Tokyo, Japan where he drools over an EOS-1Ds Mark II DSLR. What is the definition of the acronym "EOS"?
Answer: electro-optical system

The EOS system of cameras and accessories was first introduced in 1987. EOS is also a reference to Eos, the Greek goddess of dawn... fitting considering Canon is headquartered in "The Land of the Rising Sun".
  From Quiz: Photography: Lighten Up!
6 What year was the Nikon F introduced?
Answer: 1959

The F had actually been in development since 1955.
  From Quiz: Nikon History
7 To properly expose a scene in full sun, one should set the shutter speed to 1 divided by the film speed and set the aperture to what?
Answer: f 16

Film speed is defined in terms of a full sun exposure at f 16.
  From Quiz: Photo Technology
8 Who can you say is the most famous inventor of early photography?
Answer: Louis Daguerre

Though the first successful picture was developed in 1827 by Niépce, it took 8 hours to expose. Two years later Niépce joined Daguerre in a partnership, but he died only four years later. Daguerre is believed to be the "father" of photography, since by accident he exposed a plate in his chemical cupboard.
  From Quiz: History of Photography
9 How did Kodak get its name?
Answer: It was a name coined by the founder and has no meaning.

George Eastman, who founded the company in 1888, liked the letter "k" and wanted the name to start and end with it. He settled on Kodak, as he considered it impossible to mispronounce and to be unlike any existing words or names.
  From Quiz: Cameras and Photography of the early 20th Century
10 What contribution did Johann Heinrich Schulze make to the field of photography in the early 1700s?
Answer: discovering that silver salts darkened when exposed to light

In 1724 Johann Schulze conducted an experiment with silver and chalk that proved this mixture produced a better photographic effect than simple untarnished silver. Still, the end result was not completely desirable, because the silver salts used continued to darken more and more as they were exposed to light.

Nevertheless, his experiment did provide the basis for further studies into the development of camera images.
  From Quiz: Smile! You're On Candid Camera!
11 Almost 1,000 years later, there is a record of another mathematician, from the Byzantine era this time, using a form of a camera obscura in his work. What was the advance from the pinhole camera to the camera obscura?
Answer: It projected images onto a wall

The camera obscura allowed the light into the dark box in the same fashion as the pinhole camera, but this time, the image seen therein could be reflected back up onto a wall for an audience to see. The inclusion of mirrors within the box allowed the upside down image to be projected on the wall the right way up. This method of photography was used by Anthemius of Tralles (474-558) in his work. The smaller the pinhole, the sharper the image became. So simple, yet so astonishing.
  From Quiz: Photography History
12 What type of lens would you want to bring with you to a zoo, assuming you want to get close pictures of the animals from a distance?
Answer: a telephoto lens

Telephoto lenses allow the user to take pictures of things farther away. They are commonly used when taking pictures of wildlife or sports. They are usually longer and heavier than other lenses.
  From Quiz: Photography Lessons: The Equipment
13 "And the FPS," he continues, "is really great. It's six! Can you imagine?" "Yeah," you reply, nodding your head. "But, what's that?" What does FPS stand for?
Answer: frames per second

Frames per second is the rate at which pictures can be taken. The more FPS the camera can handle, the more photos that can be taken within a second. Most people don't need a large FPS for everyday photos, but it can be useful in high speed or sports photography.
  From Quiz: Photography Lessons: Know the Acronyms
14 The shutter and aperture of the digital camera control the amount of light. What shutter speed setting will make the picture darkest?
Answer: 1 / 1000

1 /1000 of a second is the shortest shutter speed on most cameras. This will make the picture darkest. Changes in shutter speed are measured in stops (equivalent to one aperture step). A 1/2 shutter speed is one stop darker than a 1 second shutter speed.
  From Quiz: What Digital Camera Setting?
15 The camera is the object by which we get the image onto some kind of recording media but the image needs to be 'in focus' first (in order for us to get a decent picture!). Which part of the camera is used to focus a subject onto the recording media?
Answer: Lens

Adjusting the lens will bring something into focus (or out of focus depending on what you are actually trying to achieve with your photo). Having an object 'in focus' will ensure that the resulting picture is clear and not blurry - unless you don't have a steady hand!
    Your options: [ Lens ] [ Viewing screen ] [ Shutter ] [ Flash ]
  From Quiz: Can You Please Focus?
16 What is an 80A filter used for?
Answer: Colour correction

This filter is used when photographing under tungsten lighting (regular light bulbs), without the aid of a flash unit. Tungsten lighting lacks the blue and green spectrum of "white" light. The 80A blue filter corrects this by filtering out the majority of orange and reds.
  From Quiz: The "F" Stops Here
17 The F shared its basic body design with what Nikon Rangefinder camera?
Answer: SP

The Nikon SP is widely regarded as the best Nikon (some say best overall) rangefinder camera.
  From Quiz: Nikon History
18 To bring objects into focus over a greater range of distances from near to far, one should do what?
Answer: decrease the lens aperture

Decreasing the shutter speed may make the whole picture sharper if the camera is not held steady, but the shutter speed does not affect the focus. Focus range is extender by decreasing the lens aperture, which is done by choosing a higher f stop.
  From Quiz: Photo Technology
19 What is the name of the first successful photographic process?
Answer: Daguerreotype

The Daguerreotype was developed by Louis Daguerre. It was discovered by accident in 1835. In 1837 the process was fixed and it was announced to the public in 1839. The French government bought the rights to it in the same year.
  From Quiz: History of Photography
20 The prototype Leica camera subsequently came to be referred to as what?
Answer: Ur-Leica

The prototype Leica, built in 1913, was subsequently called Ur-Leica, meaning "ancestor of the Leica".
  From Quiz: Cameras and Photography of the early 20th Century
21 When Frenchman Joseph Nicéphore Niépce and his brother, Claude, began experimenting with image reproductions, where did his PRIMARY interest lie, aside from developing photographic methods?
Answer: making an engine for propelling boats

While Joseph Niépce created the oldest known photograph still in existence entitled "View from the Window at Le Gras", shot in the early 1800s, his primary interests lay in building what is regarded as the world's earliest internal combustion machinery. He and his brother, Claude, began developing that engine type after Joseph returned home from the Napoleonic Wars.
  From Quiz: Smile! You're On Candid Camera!
22 Ibn al-Haytham (965-1040) experimented further on the science of optics. Of what ethnicity was he?
Answer: Arab

This brilliant man was a polymath who worked extensively in an amazing range of fields. These included geometry, perception, mathematics and physics among others. He wrote many detailed works on same and became known throughout Europe at that time as Ptolemy II. He theorised that light was reflected from any visual body in any straight line and from any angle. He experimented on this theory using lenses, mirrors and reflections, and, almost as a side thought, he described thoroughly how this worked with his detailed description and analysis of the camera obscura. The puzzling thing is why the camera as we know it today didn't come into use far earlier than it eventually did.
  From Quiz: Photography History
23 "It has a great LCD screen, too," he adds, showing you the large, blank screen on the back of his camera. "What does LCD stand for?" you ask. What does he tell you it means?
Answer: liquid crystal display

Many things besides cameras use LCD screens, like cellphones, computers, and watches. LCDs use less power than plasma or LED screens.
  From Quiz: Photography Lessons: Know the Acronyms
24 The ISO setting measures the sensitivity of the image sensor in the camera. What ISO setting is used for the highest sensitivity?
Answer: 1600

An ISO setting of 1600 is the most sensitive. Higher settings are used for darker situations to get faster shutter speeds. However this results in noisier shots. A n ISO of 100 is for normal daylight, 200 to 800 are often used indoors.
  From Quiz: What Digital Camera Setting?
25 The opening of a lens is measured as an 'f-number', but what is this opening called?
Answer: Aperture

The aperture is the opening of the lens which can be adjusted in certain cameras to control the amount of light that is let in through the lens. This affects the depth of field and exposure, with a smaller opening resulting in less light allowed through the lens but allowing for a greater depth.
  From Quiz: Can You Please Focus?
26 In one of the most unforgettable photographs of the 20th Century, a young girl was seen running naked down a road her face contorted with pain. In which war was the picture taken?
Answer: Vietnam

That girl was Phan Thi Kim Phuc and she was aged nine when she was horribly injured by napalm in 1972 during the Vietnam War. The image, taken by Huynh Cong Ut, was voted "Picture of the Year" by the World Press Photo Holland Foundation.
    Your options: [ Korea ] [ Vietnam ] [ Bosnia ] [ Iraq ]
  From Quiz: I Shoot People - The Camera Quiz
27 What is the colour temperature of a "Daylight" fluorescent tube?
Answer: 4700 K

Although fluorescent lamps are now available in different colour temperatures, this is the temperature of a basic Daylight tube for the purpose of photography and video production. Colour temperature is measured in Degrees Kelvin (K). 6500 K is the temperature of real daylight at noon.
  From Quiz: The "F" Stops Here
28 With the relatively short focal lengths and larger aperture camera lenses used with 35mm and digital camersa, what f-stop usually produces the sharpest images?
Answer: a few stops down from the maximum

The minimum aperature produces the maximum depth of field, but for objects in focus maximum sharpness is usually a few stops down from wide open. For long focal length small aperture lenses used with view cameras and other types of cameras, the sharpest aperture will be at small f stops.
  From Quiz: Photo Technology
29 How much time was required to properly expose a photo with the first successful process available?
Answer: Between 10 and 20 minutes

Photos made with the first Daguerrotypes took 10 to 20 minutes to properly expose to available light. People were required to sit still for that long to have their picture taken. Rests were used to keep the subject still.
  From Quiz: History of Photography
30 What is a NOOKY?
Answer: A close up attachment designed to fit a screw-mount Leica camera.

NOOKY was a code-word for the optical, near-focusing device produced by Leitz for Elmar 5 cm lenses from 1935-55.
  From Quiz: Cameras and Photography of the early 20th Century
31 What does HDR stand for?
Answer: High Dynamic Range

HDR typically applies when an image contains both extreme lights and extreme darks, and the idea is to balance the two. HDR typically involves taking three or more pictures while bracketing exposure, then using software to blend the photos into one pleasing, balanced photo.
  From Quiz: Photography: General Knowledge
32 By the mid 13th century, one Albertus Magnus, a Catholic Bishop and scholar, discovered which substance which would later prove to be essential in photography?
Answer: Silver nitrate

Scholar, philosopher and Catholic priest, Albertus Magnus, lived from approximately 1193 until 1280. His reputation was vast and he has often been described as the greatest German philosopher of the Middle Age. He not only read and studied science deeply, he put it into practice with his many experiments, and by making detailed notes of same in all that he did. Unfortunately these experiments, which included alchemy, gave him a bit of a reputation, in a superstitious uneducated world, of dabbling in witchcraft. He managed to survive these dangerous murmurings and lived to be a ripe old age.

Silver nitrate is an inorganic compound which is the honoured ancestor of many silver compounds used today. It was extensively used in photography. Magnus discovered, in his dabblings, that when he separated particles of gold and silver from each other, by dissolving the silver, a solution of silver nitrate, which blackened the skin and captured light, was the result. Silver nitrate is used for various other functions today as well.
    Your options: [ Silver nitrate ] [ Diamond nitrate ] [ Gold nitrate ] [ Quartz nitrate ]
  From Quiz: Photography History
33 An automatic digital camera often uses modes. What mode setting would you best use when you use a tripod and take scenic pictures outside during a vacation?
Answer: Landscape

When using the Landscape mode setting, you select a small aperture, a slower shutter speed and a tripod is recommended. Other modes are optimized for other photographic conditions.
  From Quiz: What Digital Camera Setting?
34 In simple term, when you increase the lens opening (lower F-stop), what happens to your depth of field?
Answer: It decreases

Opening up the lens, creates a tighter depth of field. This means that if you photograph under low-light conditions, your focus will have little tolerance. Using more light, and a higher F-stop means that you have more freedom to zoom and move around without the need to constantly re-focus.
  From Quiz: The "F" Stops Here
35 In a photograph, what causes red eye?
Answer: light from a flash reflected from the back of the eyeball

Red eye comes from the red blood vessels in the back of the eye. Some flash equipment flashes a few times before the actual picture is taken so that the iris of the subject's eye will close down, minimizing the effect.
  From Quiz: Photo Technology
36 What new method or methods enabled a decrease in the exposure time needed to take a picture?
Answer: Other chemicals and wider apertures

Asking for people to sit under a hot sun for 15 minutes was too much. Combining new chemical processes and using lenses with wider apertures, the exposure time was reduced to more acceptable times, of 10 to 30 seconds.
  From Quiz: History of Photography
37 Which German company, in 1931, dropped the price of their basic camera to an artificially low level in order to make money from sales of film?
Answer: Agfa

In 1931 Agfa dropped their price for their box camera to 4 Reichsmarks, and made up the losses incurred by the price drop many times over by sales of the film for their camera.
    Your options: [ Voigtländer ] [ Exacto ] [ Contax ] [ Agfa ]
  From Quiz: Cameras and Photography of the early 20th Century
38 Of what photographic significance is Steven Sasson?
Answer: He invented the world's first digital camera

Steven Sasson was an engineer at Eastman Kodak, and invented the digital camera in 1975. It weighed 8 pounds (about 3.64 Kg) and recorded 0.01 megapixel (10,000 pixels or roughly 100 by 100) black and white photos to a cassette tape.
  From Quiz: Photography: General Knowledge
39 What innovation did the autochrome plate, patented by the Lumiere brothers in 1903 and marketed from 1907, allow you to have in your portrait?
Answer: Full color photographic image

Monochrome photography, often referred to as black-and-white, is generally based on the reaction between silver halides and light, which means that the image is composed of shades of grey. The stability of the image was improved by treatment of the paper on which the print was made with sepia (producing a reddish-brown range of colors) or selenium (producing a silvery range of colors). For those who could afford it, an artist could be hired to paint a photographic image with watercolors, to make them more realistic. However, the Lumieres produced the first commercial film that produced actual color photographs. The glass plate was first coated with a sticky substance such as pitch, to hold things in place; a layer of potato starch grains (roughly 10 microns in diameter) which had been dyed red, blue and green before being thoroughly mixed to look grey to the naked eye was spread thinly on the plate, then lampblack was dusted over to fill in any gaps between the grains of starch; this was covered with shellac, so that the water in the emulsion layer to follow would not damage the starch; a gelatine layer containing panchromatic photosensitive chemicals finished it off. Panchromatic chemicals reproduce all frequencies of light accurately, unlike simple silver halides, which are more sensitive to the blue end of the spectrum than to the lower-frequency colors. Their use allowed the production of realistic colors, although the images were often fuzzy, due to the roundness of the starch grains.

While the autochrome process was able to produce lifelike color photographs, its extensive filtering of the light meant that exposure times were quite long, so the convenience of hand-held cameras was sacrificed. They were quite popular for formal studio photographs, but not for family photos. That had to wait until 1936, when Kodak produced a color film roll that could be used in the same cameras as those using their black-and-white films.
  From Quiz: Baby It's You
40 In 1881 an American farmer invented the first "roll film" camera, which brought photography to new levels among the masses of those who enjoyed taking their own pictures. What was the name of this farmer who hailed from Cambria, Wisconsin?
Answer: Peter Houston

While Peter Houston developed the earliest roll film camera, it was his brother, David, who patented the containers that held the rolls of flexible film, along with several of the working parts of his brother's camera.

Later, in 1889, Houston sold these patents to George Eastman of Eastman Kodak fame for $5,000.00.
    Your options: [ Michael Jellique ] [ Adrian Denver ] [ Bjorn Bjeck ] [ Peter Houston ]
  From Quiz: Smile! You're On Candid Camera!
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