I have been shooting porfessionally for almost five years now. In that time I’ve been focusing on digital and lighting techniques. Early on I had studied photography for a few years while in college. Back when it was film, no DSLRs. I had a blast learning how to configure my settings on the camera, then the anticipation of how they turn out as I rush off to the dark room. I shot on 35mm and also on medium format during that time. Most of my shooting was in black and white because I have love for it and also because my accessibility to a dark room was only for developing black and white film.
Over the past year or so, I’ve started to pick up my 35mm camera again working again with black and white and now knowing my skill with setting the camera and not wasting film is also reassuring since film isn’t cheap.
So a couple of months ago I added a new camera to my collection and this has really been a ton of fun to shoot with. I picked up an old Polaroid Land Camera. It has been converted to using a AA battery. I have found that film can be purchased online, mainly finding Amazon a good place. My favorite to shoot with is the 669 or 667 film from Polaroid, but it’s hard to find film that is not expired. You can also shoot with FujiFilms version of Polaroid film, which I have done and it works great. The reason I like 669 and 667 film so much is the film transfer you can do. This is where you shoot your image, peel the film apart and stick the solvent to a sheet of paper, wood, any other surface and it will develop on there. I haven’t mastered this art form just yet but when I do I’ll have a post about it.
One thing I love the polaroid for is shooting some take aways from shoots I’m on. I have started a journal sketchbook for pasting my polaroids in and make notes on the shoot and such, this process was inspired by studying Frank Ockenfels while in one of the 8 Week Portrait Workshops with Don Gianotti. Check out Franks journals, those are truly inspiring works of art alone.
Another thing I love this polaroid for is portraits of people. Friends, family, strangers. It always starts a great conversation. Whether it’s someone that remembers when these came out and they had one, or someone that has never seen one and is amazed at how this make a photograph.
A few weeks back I was on a trip back up to Maryland and decided to use this for portraits of people I was around during the few days. Again some were excited to see one in use again, and a few were not sure what this contraption was. The photos sprinkled throughout this post are from that adventure in making portraits.
I definitely see this being in my camera bag for a while.
I hope you liked this post. If you have any comments or stories you would like to share please feel free to do so down below. Keep a look out for future posts about my Landcamera. Thanks for stopping by!