The Bluest of Blues: Anna Atkins and the First Book of Photographs
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A gorgeous picture book biography of botanist and photographer Anna Atkins—the first person to ever publish a book of photography.
After losing her mother very early in life, Anna Atkins (1799–1871) was raised by her loving father. He gave her a scientific education, which was highly unusual for women and girls in the early 19th century. Fascinated with the plant life around her, Anna became a botanist. She recorded all her findings in detailed illustrations and engravings until the invention of cyanotype photography in 1842. Anna used this new technology in order to catalog plant specimens—a true marriage of science and art. In 1843, Anna published the book Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype.
The New York Public Library preserves much of Anna Atkins’s original work, including an edition of her groundbreaking book Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions. Explore her unique photographs through our digital collections.
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Author and Illustrator: Fiona Robinson
Dim: 9'' x 12''
Item Number: 9781419725517