History of photography, method of recording the image of an object through the action of light, or related radiation, on a light-sensitive material. The word, derived from the Greek photos (“light”) and graphein (“to draw”), was first used in the 1830s. For a discussion of the technical aspects of the medium, see photography, the technology of. For treatment of motion-picture photography, or cinematography, see a motion picture, history of, and motion-picture technology. As a means of visual communication and expression, photography has distinct aesthetic capabilities.