Eadweard Muybridge demonstrating animal motion, 1889.
4 0 c m
actual image size: 25cm x 32cm

Eadweard Muybridge demonstrating animal motion, 1889.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library


Plate taken from the 'Illustrated London News'. Eadweard Muybridge (1830-1904), carried out a photographic investigation into the motion of animals beginning in 1889. To determine whether or not a horse lifts all four legs off the ground when trotting, something which cannot be observed with the naked eye, Muybridge took several of short-exposure shots with a series of cameras, placed so as to capture the various stages of motion. He later experimented with re-creating the motion using a series of pictures inside a rotating disk. With stroboscopic illumination, the illusion of motion is projected onto a screen. This device was known as the zoopraxiscope.

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