The history of pictures as they are known today is relatively short. In fact, the history of photography is also very short, not to mention that of digital images, which is the most common form of photographs these days. Digital pictures or images have been around for about 60 years now, although the increase in quality and improvements they have seen has grown almost exponentially in the past 15 years. Today, any smartphone in the market carries a high definition camera and the possibilities to upload digital images onto the Internet instantly are numerous.
Nowadays, there are plenty of websites, not to mention phone apps that one can use in order to upload digital pictures, simply to store them in the cloud or, eventually, to share them with the world. Among the best known websites or apps out there one can mention Instagram, Facebook (even though it’s not a primarily photo-based social network), Pinterest, iCloud, DeviantArt, Tumblr (same as with Facebook), Photobucket, Google Photos and, of course, Flickr. The way photos are shared with family, friends or with the rest of the world today have changed greatly as compared to how it was some 15 years ago or even more. Services like Flickr enable people to share photos in a matter of a few clicks and in an amazingly rapid fashion.
However, people have been sharing pictures almost since the beginning of time, or ever since humans developed a sense of aesthetics and art. The first pictures or images shared by humans were paintings on caves and walls and it is unknown whether they were done for artistic, scientific or religious purposes. Other historical records of early pictures include murals, symbols and other kind of art plastered on walls, vases, utensils and artefacts in many ancient cultures such as Sumerian, Mesopotamian, in ancient Greece, ancient Rome or ancient Egypt.