The Internet is currently ablaze over a video of strangers having a first kiss, but what was likely the first kiss committed to film was between two models—two female models. Oddly, the photographer filmed a same-sex kiss because, not in spite of, mores of the era. Artful nudity below.
Eadweard Muybridge was a pioneering photographer who used film to study the ways that humans and other animals move. After using photography to prove that horses take all four hooves off the ground during a gallop, Muybridge began photographing his 1872-1885 Animal Locomotion series, sequential photographs that show various animals engaged in various activities. The humans in his photographs were naked so that viewers could see how the body moved as his models walked, played sports, and kissed. American social conventions of the time prevented Muybridge from filming naked men in the same frames with naked women, and so when he photographed pairs of people, they were same-sex pairs. That is why, when Muybridge filmed a kiss, it was between two same-sex people, in this case, women.
Muybridge photographed his kiss sequence years before the first cinematic kiss filmed by Thomas Edison, and Muybridge's photographs function as their own miniature movie: