Sketch by Fox Talbot, English, early 19th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This pencil drawing, from a sketchbook by Fox Talbot, depicts a maple leaf. William Henry Fox Talbot (1800-1877) was an English physicist and pioneer of photography. In 1839 he announced his invention of 'photogenic drawing' in the same year as the invention of the daguerrotype by Louis Daguerre (1789-1851). The sketch was drawn, using a camera lucida, during Fox Talbot's honeymoon in Italy. His disatisfaction with images such as this urged him to pursue his photographic experiments.