Eadweard Muybridge was one of the world’s most influential and innovative photographers. He was well known for producing sequential images of moving animals and humans as artistic and scientific experimentations that changed the way we understand motion and for revealing photographic capabilities critical to the development of early photography and cinema. These photographs were often presented with Muybridge’s invented zoopraxiscope, a mechanism that projected the stills as a moving image.
In this black-and-white sequential image from the famous Animal Locomotion series, Muybridge presents three horizontal rows of 12 images showing a nude male figure walking up an incline. Shot from the side, front and back, Muybridge was able to capture the change in the gate of the figure’s walk as well as shifts in muscle movement and the balanced positioning of arms and torso as the man’s legs force the body up the slant.