WANT: Polaroid Camera
When I was younger, I’d always wanted a Polaroid camera. There was just something about the idea of having a photo at your fingertips seconds after it was taken. Then they came out with digital cameras, and it seemed like they’d found a way to market the instant photo without all the extra film. But it just wasn’t the same.
Imagine it: the blinding flash followed by the shtick of the paper as it pops out of the machine; the inevitable anticipation, watching and waiting as the image slowly emerges from the depths of the grey-black ink. Will it reveal the best, the worst or the most hilarious pose of your life? You only had to wait a few seconds to find out, but it felt like an eternity.
Any instant film aficionado will tell you that it’s an addiction, one that Polaroid enabled from 1948 until 2008. Polaroid junkies will gladly gush about their favourite camera: the SX-70 from the 70s, with its compact storage, automatic ejection and single lens reflex (SRL), which was uncommon at the time; the Sun 660 from the 80s, with its square body design, 1/4-1/200 sec shutter speed, auto flash, light management system and auto-focus technology; or the 680, with its electronic flash, auto-focus, SLR and preview function.
Though Polaroid released a hybrid instant-digital camera in 2011, the original Polaroid cameras will always be the true instant cameras. They brought your memories to life right before your eyes, made them tangible – after all, photos are memories trapped forever on semi-gloss paper.
A Polaroid gives our memories the chance to age with dignity and a little bit of dust, so that our children and our grandchildren can stumble upon them and laugh.