September 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
A few weeks ago, my wife and I attended the wedding of our friends Reid and Jackie at a farm in Massachusetts. It was a small wedding, with only about 40 guests. We ate outside at a long table, with a reception following in the barn. There were chickens and sheep, raspberry and tomato picking, and a sweet bonfire. Reid and Jackie are two of the nicest, quirkiest, most interesting people I have the fortune of knowing, and I wish them the best.
Photos were taken with a Polaroid SLR 680 camera and Impossible Project PX 680 Opacification V4B and V4C film, as well as PX 680 Color Block film.
June 4, 2012 § 1 Comment
A few weeks ago, I celebrated my bachelor party weekend with some fine gentleman on Cape Cod. I brought with me several Polaroid cameras and a slew of Impossible Project PX 70 and PX 100 Cool film. It was a weekend rife with beer, burgers and BB guns. This is a handful of the best shots.
We’re gonna try to make it a yearly event if possible. But next time, it may be in the fall so that we can call it OcTobinfest.
December 20, 2010 § 1 Comment
Recently, my mother found a stash of her old photos in shoe boxes and plastic bags. Among the shots were snapshots of her and her cousins on Cape Cod as kids, her father working in the garden at the house she grew up in and her brother after returning from Vietnam. Then there were these two Polaroids. These were taken at the hospital after I was born. That’s me, in the arms of my aunt.
I asked my mom, and she confirmed that these Polaroids were the first photos taken of me (I took this as a sign. It was meant to be). Seeing these pictures got me thinking again about how amazing instant film is. There really is nothing like it. When my grandparents (pictured below with my aunt) and other relatives came to visit my parents at the hospital and see me for the first time, they were probably able to walk away holding a photo of the occasion. No waiting for one hour developing, but a picture to have right away and carry around, to show friends and other family or stick on the fridge.
I’ve always believed I was born in the wrong decade. I’m an old soul in some ways. I wish I could have experienced the 50s, 60s and 70s firsthand, and I think that’s why I prefer film over digital, especially instant film. I’m always drawn to vintage signs, old buildings and classic cars and Polaroid, Fuji and now The Impossible Project have allowed me to view these things as they appeared in their own time. A real window into the past. I’m grateful that there are so many others like me, who appreciate and love instant film and want it to live on.
And don’t forget to stop by My Photo Stream.
August 5, 2010 § 2 Comments
Back in the spring, The Impossible Project released their first original run of the next generation of instant film. The beginning of this new chapter in analog magic was marked by crispy monochrome films: PX 100 Silver Shade for use in Polaroid’s SX-70 Land Cameras and PX 600 Silver Shade for use in Polaroid’s 600-series cameras. I scooped some up promptly, and got to work (or I guess I should say “play”) shooting. The so-called “First Flush” of these films are by no means perfect, but that’s one of the things I love most about instant film. You never know what you’re going to get. Factors such as temperature and light and duration of development have always affected the images I’ve gotten using Polaroid’s integral films and pack films, but The Impossible Project’s new films are even more sensitive to light and temperature. Upon ejection from the camera, prints must be immediately shielded from light for the duration of development, and the tonal range of the blacks, whites and sepias will change depending on how warm or cool the print is kept during development. This can be tricky, but also fun because of the unknown results. Additionally, these new films are SO new, SO experimental, that a day or two after having taken a photo, the tones may shift and some solarization may occur. One of my favorite qualities of Polaroid film, Fujifilm’s instant equivalents, and film in general, is the low fidelity, the grain, the imperfections. This new film from The Impossible Project gives us just that. Here is one of the first shots I took using Impossible’s PX 100…
This was taken with my Polaroid SX-70, probably my favorite camera of all the numerous cameras I own. You can see that it’s not true black & white, but more of a sepia, with hints of red. I also love the speckles and the levels of contrast. There’s also a dreamy quality to this image that resonates with me.
This next shot is an example of Impossible’s PX 600 Silver Shade film, designed for Polaroid’s 600-series cameras, such as my trusty SLR 680 SE.
Also super-dreamy, but there’s more warmth in the PX 600. Another example of how temperature variation and light can give you unexpected results, and another reason I love what The Impossible Project is doing. To me, this photo represents conflicting moods. It has an apocalyptic flavor to it almost, but at the same time, it feels comforting. I think the colors give me that mellow, relaxed vibe, while the fact that this was taken at the tail end of the day gives it the ominous vibe. Of these two films, I think I’m more drawn to the PX 600, because of the warmer tones.
Finally, most recently, Impossible released a monochrome film designed for Polaroid Spectra and Image cameras. Last weekend, I had the opportunity to visit The Impossible Project Space in NYC, a place every Polaroid and instant film fanatic NEEDS to check out, and I picked up a slew of film, including the new PZ 600 film for my Spectra. This film didn’t seem as temperamental as the previous monochrome incarnations from Impossible. After taking the first shot, I slipped it into my pocket to develop, and within about 30 seconds, the image seemed fairly stable.
Interestingly, this photo had more traditional black and white tones at first. In the days since, however, the tones have shifted toward sepia. This next shot experienced similar color changes after taking it. One thing I try to capture in my photographs is a link to the past. I’ve always thought I was born in the wrong era, and I consider the charms of film as a window into another time. This new film from Impossible lends itself perfectly to what I’m all about. When I saw this car parked in the Soho area of Manhattan, I knew it was fate, because I’d just come from the Impossible space and my Spectra was stuffed with PZ 600.
I love this stuff. And I’m very excited about the range of film The Impossible Project Plans to release in the future. They’ve come a long way in the span of a couple of years since Polaroid announced the discontinuation of its line of instant film. The future is analog.
Please visit My Photo Stream.
March 22, 2010 § Leave a comment
This is my girlfriend Amy’s sister Becky. One afternoon in October, we went up to the roofdeck of the apartment building where Becky lives with her fiance Scott. I had been wanting to shoot up there on a nice day like this, and I hadn’t shot anything with Beck before. She was game. We shot a bunch of stuff, Polaroid and 120 film, but this shot here was my favorite from that day.
This was taken with my Polaroid Electric Zip camera. Polaroid’s square-format pack film cameras like the Zip and the Square Shooters are some of my favorites to shoot with. I had found an old pack of Type 88 film frozen to the back of my refrigerator and brought it to test it this day, and it worked! It is a crime against humanity that Polaroid discontinued Type 88.
This photo is one of those rare times when everything works out perfectly. The minimal focal length of the Polaroid Zip is about 3.5 feet, and that must be about exactly how far I am from Becky here. Her posture sums up who she is. A little bit of a lean, little bit of a smile, hair falling just right. Another thing that you really have to get down to a science is development time. Type 88 is meant to develop for 60 seconds. Less than 60 yields pale, underexposed tones, but more than 60 will give you a darker image with green hues. Development also worked out well here.
I love this photo.
Please visit My Photo Stream.