Louis Daguerre was a stage designer, painter, and inventor of the daguerrotype. In 1824, he built a 70-foot diorama of Holyrood Chapel in Paris. He would charge admission to the “diorama theatre” and experiment with lighting and primitive animation effects in the space.

In his painting Ruins of Holyrood Chapel, Daguerre depicts the ruins in moonlight. It is unknown whether Daguerre visited the actual site in Edinburgh, Scotland. Maybe not, since the proportions aren’t exactly accurate - as shown in the bottom photo.

  • Ruins of Holyrood Chapel, 1824.
    Louis Daguerre (French, 1787-1851)
  • Photograph by James Valentine (chapel on the left side of the photo), circa 1900
  • Photograph by Kaihsu Tai, 2004