Eadweard J. Muybridge’s Birthday Celebrated in Google Doodle
Another unique image is presented in today’s Google Doodle as the search engine king commemorates the 182nd birthday of Eadweard J. Muybridge, the man known as the motion picture innovator which pioneered works on animal locomotion using multiple camera to capture motion.
The galloping horses depict the work of art known as Sallie Gardner at a Gallop or “The Horse in Motion,”a series of photos which stands as one of the earliest forms of videography.
Using 24 cameras, Eadweard J. Muybridge captured a series photos at the Palo Alto Stock Farm. The photos were that of the running habits of race horses owned by Leland Stanford, a businessman and former governor of California in 1872.
Stanford asked the help of Muybridge and hired him to settle a popularly-debated question – whether all four of a horse’s hooves are off the ground at the same time during the trot. With Muybridge’s “The Horse in Motion,” it showed that the hooves do all leave the ground simultaneously. However, they were not as artists had depicted them, with the legs stretched out fore and aft, but with the four legs tucked up under the horse.
Born in Kingston-upon-Thames on 9 April 1830, Muybridge started his career as a publisher’s agent and bookseller when he emigrated to the US in 1855. He took up photography seriously sometime between 1861 and 1866. By 1867, he began his reputation in photography with photos of Yosemite and San Francisco.
In 1874, Muybridge killed Major Harry Larkyns with a gunshot upon discovering that he was a lover of his wife. He was acquitted of the case and eventually left the US leaving his son Florado Helios Muybridge in an orphanage believing he was a son of Larkyns.
Muybridge returned home to England for good in 1894, where he wrote and published a pair of books on his work prior to his death May 8, 1904.