Nadar was the pseudonym of Gaspard-Félix Tournachon (1820-1910), a photographer, caricaturist, journalist, novelist and balloonist.
Caricaturist for Le Charivari in 1848.
In 1849 he created the Revue comique and the Petit journal pour rire.
He took his first photographs in 1853.
In 1858, Nadar became the first person to make aerial photographs.
By 1863, Nadar built a huge (6000 m3) hot air balloon named "Le Géant", thereby inspiring Jules Verne's Cinq semaines en ballon (Five Weeks in a Balloon). "Le Géant" was unsuccessful and, convinced him that the future belonged to heavier-than-air machines. "The Society for the Encouragement of Aerial Locomotion by Means of Heavier than Air Machines," with Nadar as president and Jules Verne as secretary.
He lent his photo studio to a group of painters, thus making possible the first exhibition of the Impressionists in April, 1874.
He photographed Victor Hugo on his death-bed in 1885.
He is credited with having published (in 1886) the first photo-interview, and also took erotic photographs.
The character of "Michel Ardan" in De la Terre à la Lune is inspired by Nadar.