Photography is the process of creating pictures using the action of light. It is concerned with light pattern recording, as reflected from objects, onto a medium that is sensitive through a timed exposure. It is done mechanically, chemically or digitally by a device popularly known as a camera.

Photography can be categorized under imaging technology and has attracted the interest of scientists and artists from its beginnings. Its capacity has been taken advantage of by scientists in order to achieve accuracy in recording, such as Eadweard Muybridge who studied human and animal locomotion (1887). Equal interests have been given by artists but have also tried to venture into other avenues than the photo-mechanical illustration of reality, such as the pictorialist movement. Photography has been used by the military, police and security forces for surveillance, recognition and storage of data.

A camera is composed of an enclosed chamber with an aperture at one end to allow light to enter, and a surface used for recording and viewing to capture the light at the other end. The diaphragm controls the diameter of the aperture, although some cameras have a fixed-size aperture.

Rangefinder cameras focus through a coupled parallax unit above the camera. Single-lens reflex cameras gives the photographer the flexibility in determining visual spotlight and arrangement by utilizing the objective lens and moving mirror in projecting the picture onto a ground glass or screen made of plastic micro-prism. Twin-lens reflex cameras use an objective lens and a unit for focusing lens in a parallel body in order to compose and focus. View cameras utilize a screen made of removal ground glass that can be replaced by either a photographic plate or a reusable holder which contains sheet film prior to exposure.

Light is captured by traditional cameras into photographic film or photographic plate. Video and digital camera utilize electronics, or CMOS sensors to catch transferrable or storable images into tapes or computer memory inside the camera for future playback or processing.

Movie cameras capture many images in succession; still cameras are built to capture single images. However, overlapping happens, as still cameras are often used to catch moving images during special effects work and modern digital cameras are often capable of trivially switching between still and motion recorder modes. A movie camera that stores images into magnetic tape by using analog or digital technology is a video camera.

Stereo camera have the ability to take photographs with "three-dimensional" appearance by using two different photographs which are joined together to form the illusion of depth in the composite image. It has two lenses side by side used for making three dimensional prints or slides. Three or more lenses are used by stereo cameras used in creating lenticular prints.
Date imprinting features are found in some film cameras for use in printing a date on the negative.

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