Tired of the lackluster point-and-click of today’s digital world? Bring back the fun of the snap and shake with a modern take on
“Shake, shake, shake, shake it like a Polaroid picture…”
Remember those memorable lines from Outkast’s 2003 super hit “Hey Ya!”? Of course you do! Now, while you finish singing the chorus in your head, here’s another question: Have you actually had the chance to shake a Polaroid picture?
The instant camera has a storied history, being one of the oldest consumer camera styles on the market. The first instant camera to gain popularity was invented by American scientist Edwin Landin 1948, a mammoth piece of still-photography hardware known as the 95 Land Camera. Over time, companies such as Polaroid and Fujifilm continued to advance the technology, eventually creating the iconic handhelds that are still loved today.
Analog Experiences A Rebirth
Though mostly discarded for newer digital cameras, Polaroid cameras and their fun instant-film photographs have seen a resurgence recently, mostly due to a new love for all things retro and analog among Millennials and Generation Z. If you were lucky enough to be alive in the days before touchscreens, you likely remember handling one of the bulky Polaroid or Fujifilm brand instant cameras.
Peering through the tiny viewfinder, you then pressed the large button to snap the photo. With a flash and whir, a tiny strip of the film would eject from the front of the camera, and your and your friends would gather around to watch the picture slowly develop. To speed things along, you would grab the tiny film strip and shake it, causing the picture to magically appear more quickly. Once developed, you could tape the tiny photograph to your locker, your refrigerator, and a scrapbook for safekeeping.
What’s With The Shaking?
So what is it that makes the shaking of a Polaroid picture so iconic? Here’s a fun fact to impress your friends next time you bring your retro Polaroid around: Known for its wide top and bottom border, each piece of Polaroid film contains tiny pouches of the chemicals required to develop the picture. After snapping a photo of you and your mates, the tiny strip of film bursts from the bottom of the camera, smearing the chemicals inside the film onto the photograph. The result? A fun and “instant” printed photo!
4 Reasons Why Polaroids Still Rule The Photography Scene
In recent years, Polaroid-style instant cameras have experienced an incredible rebirth in popularity. So why are Polaroids having such a resurgence in the photography scene? Here are four reasons why grabbing a Polaroid may be a great way to learn to love photography again:
1. Think Before Shooting
With the rise of digital DSLR cameras, you can point and click to your heart’s content, and slog back through the files for that perfect shot at a later date. Not so with the Polaroid. Instead of being able to rely on an endless number of photos, the limited amount of film makes a photographer really think about the composition of their shot before snapping a picture.
This means that you really get into the elements of your picture: from lighting to angle, and the scene you are shooting in! Imagine taking your photography back to basics and remembering why you love shooting that perfect picture!
2. You Never Know What Will Come Out The Other End
Let’s be honest, the most exciting part of a Polaroid picture is the anticipation that comes with waiting to see how the picture turns out. Trying to frame the perfect picture through the tiny viewfinder is hard enough – and you never know what will happen once you snap the photo!
Not only does a Polaroid offer a sense of the unknown, but you have a variety of creative means by which to alter the image as the film ejects from the camera. By grabbing the film in various ways as it emerges or exposing the developing image to different lights, you can add fun and surprising color and hue changes to your pictures. This ability to manually add a “filter” to your images leaves room for all kinds of fun and exciting opportunities with your instant images!
3. That Iconic Frame
There’s something special about the Polaroid film itself. The iconic look of the framed photo immediately tells you that the picture was shot in a fun and unique way. When you see the frame and unique, charming look to the film, you know instantly you are looking at a Polaroid. It is truly impressive that a single piece of photography equipment has risen to cultural awareness!
The small and portable images are perfect for special events such as weddings and holidays. Having the ability to snap a quick photo to remember an event by and being able to take it home is an ability that few mediums have been able to capture.
4. A Retro Reminder Of Better Days
What is it that draws so many individuals to Polaroids today? The camera is bulky, the film takes time to develop, and the photo quality isn’t a clear as those produced by digital cameras. Yet, despite the various reasons that Polaroids don’t meet the quality of today’s modern cameras, individuals continue to purchase these retro devices and the film that powers them. Why?
Perhaps the return to analog is a longing for simpler days. In today’s digital have-it-now world, there are few excuses to slow down and do something by hand. With a Polaroid, the act of installing the film, framing the photo, snapping a picture, and watching the image slowly emerge requires one to slow down and breathe. That slowing reminds one of slower days before technology ruled the day and you took pictures for fun instead of likes. Maybe the magic of analog allows us to once again return to a time when life was a bit slower and calmer.
Now doesn’t that sound nice?
Bring Back The Fun of Instant Film
Do those reasons make you want to jump up and run to your parent’s storage unit to look for their old Polaroid of Fujifilm instant camera? Us too!
Luckily, modern technology and retro film lovers have made it possible to enjoy the fun of instant film photography with new products such as the Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Classic Instant Film Camera. By marrying the retro look and feel of your favorite instant film camera with the expectations you have of a modern device, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 offers modern-day photography abilities such as bulb and double exposures that offer an enhanced capability to capture light creatively. Utilizing instant camera film, you can enjoy the fun of a slow-develop image with that iconic look and feel. At both an affordable price and with all of the features that made instant film cameras the timeless products that they have come, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 won’t disappoint.
If you are ready to bring back the fun of instant film to your modern world, pick up a Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 today and start having a blast with photographs you will truly love.