Ok, bonus post this week. Today starts Day 1 of Polaroid Week (formerly known as ‘RoidWeek.) If you are just joining us this is Part 2, the Autumn series, part one happens in May. A long time tradition that used to happen just once a year has now spawned into a biannual thing. I always look forward to immersing myself into all things instant, if only for the week. Think you won’t be hooked? Just wait. Your Saturday will feel a little less fun when you see no new photos and the group Flickr pool closed.
And excuse the self promotion… today also coincides with my feature on Snap It See It. They asked me to answer a few questions including tips for new instant photographers along with some of my favorite images over the years. That alone took me a few hours to pull together. I’m sure I dated myself with “how long have you been shooting instant” but I’m happy representing the 40+ demographic. Werd. 😀
It’s not too late
No camera? You can buy an instant camera locally, try a Polaroid 300, I think they have them at every Walmart or Target, or better yet order an Instax mini or even better the wider Instax 210 has come down in price ($50USD) probably because the new model is due out in spring.
I love the Fuji vivid color.
Are you the old school type? You can try eBay (shop highly rated sellers), but your better off going to Goodwill, swap meet or antique shop. There are also stores that refurbish and test, I have heard great things about RareMedium (Seattle, WA) and I bought my SLR680 from Impossible Project. If you are buying at the flea market or antique mall remember to bring an open pack of film that works to test the camera. I always save a used cartridge and load it with my exposed reject shots. If you use a fresh pack there is a a way to place the black card back in the film pack to save the remaining shots, Meghan is the queen of that. You have to practice, she can do it feeding the black slide through the camera opening right back into the pack so you can switch film mid pack. Take your used film cartridge, pop it in, click and wait for the whirrl… if it spits out a photo at least you know its not DOA. If you really want to test to see if it works you’ll have to buy some expired Polaroid film, the newer stuff from Impossible takes upwards of an hour (sometimes longer) to develop.
I bought my JobPro at an antique mall for $20. Its still going strong in fact I may just trot it out this week.
How to incorporate your instant photos into the digital space.
I am a big fan of the picture in a picture look. Especially on instagram because well, I’m a bit of a purest when it comes to my IG feed. “iPhone only as should be, just sayin” ya know I don’t mind the occasional film scan but I just can’t see the point of making that your tiny digital portfolio when there are other places more suited for just that. I don’t know about you but I like “taking photos and simultaneously sharing ON THE LINE”
- Flickr Blog A picture of a Polaroid
- #instaxagram – where you line up the instant photo and reshoot with your phone. (the hashtag has turned NSFW unfortunately)
- Go check out instaxagrammer Keith Weaver
You can also make a collage out of them like I do from time to time. These are a total zen thing for me. Mindless sorting.
I got out of my chair and shot this for Day 1. Amazingly enough the film still worked. I had no idea there was film in an old Land 100 Automatic pack camera. The thing smells caustic too. I’m pretty sure the plastic case around it is beginning to break down.
A Polaroid by its nature makes you frugal. You walk around with maybe two packs of film in your pocket. You have twenty shots, so each shot is a world. – Patti Smith