Making a photograph today is a matter of pressing a button and letting a bunch of electronics do their thing. Before that we had film, and before film we had even more cumbersome processes. Did you know that making photographs once involved materials like egg-whites, asphalt, and platinum? Watch these videos to hear and see how the magic of photography came to be.

The series, produced by George Eastman House, takea you through just how photographs were invented and refined, starting from the very first experiments with the camera obscura and light-sensitive silver salts. It's incredible fascinating to see the actual processes demonstrated on camera. It's also pretty important, I think, to have a rudimentary knowledge of how such an influential technology works. Here they all are: