A Shot from <em>Citizen Kane</em>

Gamma & Density, which debuted its iPad color-correction system at NAB, has included in the latest edition of the online Gamma & Density Journal a fun, informative cinematography timeline.

I’m not crazy about the interface, which requires you to click from screen to screen like you’re turning the pages of a print magazine to read the complete listings. But “A Short History of American Cinematography” is still an enjoyable read, covering wildly influential technical and creative advances by the likes of Billy Bitzer (Intolerance) and Gregg Toland, ASC (Citizen Kane), as well as mentioning the key films of their non-Hollywood counterparts like Gabriel Figueroa (Los Olvidados) and Kazuo Miyagawa (Rashomon). It also lists winners of cinematography Oscars and notes the dates of introduction of key film stocks that enabled new techniques in the camera and in the lab.

If you know your film history, see if you agree with the milestones selected by credited authors Yuri Neyman (also G&D’s CEO) and Todd Raisenberger. If you’re a little less aware of these film-history landmarks, take it as an opportunity to get a quick crash course in the history of moving picture photography — or share it with a young film student you know.