Travel & Outdoors | 29 November 2016The First Snowflake Photography Share article facebook twitter google pinterest Snowflakes are unique and beautiful. They are so delicate that they can be incredibly hard to capture. The first snowflake camera was invented in 1885, when Wilson Bentley attached a microscope to a camera to accurately see the details of the snowflake. Here’s a peek from The Snowflake: Winter’s Frozen Artistry. Wilson Bentley, a farmer from the small town of Jericho, Vermont, created the ?rst photographic album of falling snow, which awakened the world to the hidden wonders of snow?akes. As a teenager in the 1880s, Bentley became interested in the microscopic structure of snow crystals, and he began experimenting with the new medium of photography as a means of recording what he observed. He constructed an ingenious mechanism for attaching a camera to his microscope for this purpose, and he succeeded in photographing his ?rst snow crystal in 1885, when he was nineteen years old. To say Bentley was dedicated to snow?ake photography is an understatement. The winter pastime became his lifelong passion, and over the course of forty-six years he captured more than ?ve thousand snow crystal images on glass photographic plates. He resided in the same Jericho farmhouse for his entire life, photographing snow?akes each winter using the same equipment he constructed as a teenager. Bentley’s photographs appeared in numerous publications over several decades, providing for many their ?rst look at the inner structure and symmetry of snow crystals. And with thousands of snow?akes, all unique, the world was exposed to their incredible variety as well. The now familiar old chestnut that no two snow?akes are exactly alike appears to have had its origin in Bentley’s photographs. In the late 1920s, Bentley teamed with W. J. Humphreys, chief physicist for the United States Weather Bureau, to author his magnum opus, containing more than two thousand snow crystal photographs. Alas, the sixty-six-year-old Vermont farmer died of pneumonia just a few weeks after the work was published. In the decades that have followed this seminal work, many others have taken up the challenge of capturing the structure and beauty of snow crystals using ever-improving cameras and lenses. We like to think that Wilson Bentley would smile and give a knowing nod of approval if he could see how snow?ake photography has ?ourished over the years. Buy from an Online Retailer US: UK: Take a deeper look at the unique, hidden beauty of winter with the world’s foremost snowflake expert. From ten thousand feet above the Earth, a snowflake begins its fall. Its journey starts when ice forms around a nucleus of dust and is blown by the winds through clouds where the crystals blossom into tiny ice stars. Because it weighs next to nothing, a snow crystal may take hours to fall–finally landing where Caltech physicist Kenneth Libbrecht can use microphotography to record the tiny, intricate, frozen artistry of the snowflake. In The Snowflake: Winter’s Frozen Artistry, Libbrecht teams with author Rachel Wing to create the most fascinating book on snowflakes ever published. This book defines the art and science of snowflakes for generations. Join Libbrecht and Wing as they charmingly chronicle the creation of snow crystals, both in nature and in the laboratory. The Snowflake: Winter’s Frozen Artistry touches the hand of Mother Nature, showing incredible microphotography of individual snow crystals from all over the world. The book tells the history of snowflake observations mixed with an entertaining blend of tales of hunting snowflakes, snowflakes in literature and art, and the science of snowflakes, to bring a flurry of delightful snowflakes into the hands of warm-bodied humans everywhere. With this captivating book, we can better appreciate snowflakes, winter’s frozen artistry. Share article facebook twitter google pinterest If you have any comments on this article please contact us or get in touch via social media.