Let’s Fly Away, © 2008 Jeane Vogel Photography, Hand-altered Polaroid Photograph
Polaroid Film. It’s back!
I don’t know for how long and I don’t know how good it is, but a company in Austria is making it again for artists. Small batches. Hand crafted.
For those who don’t know, here’s the backstory:
In the late ’60s and early ’70s, Polaroid made this terrific film, SX-70, for instant cameras. You took a picture and watched it develop. It was all the rage at my boy-girl parties in high school. I understand adults at the time liked it too!
It had a flaw, though. Touch the film too harshly before it hardened — about two hours — and you got nasty black marks. It didn’t take artists long to figure out that the soft emulsion could create some wonderfully impressionist results.
Polaroid changed the film and got rid of the flaw. We artists begged them to bring back the old version. They did. They they went belly up. Twice.
In December 2005 they stopped production forever, four full months BEFORE they said they would. Last June, all Polaroid film went away.
As my stash of film dwindled, my collectors bemoaned the loss. Surely someone will start making it again, they said. We hoped.
If not, I guess this work will go up in value! We hoped again.
Truly, I wanted the film back. Some artists have tried to reproduce the results in Photoshop, but it’s not the same organic, fluid results you get from this film.
So when the film’s return was announced, I ordered some. Got some sepia film in another Polaroid format too. If the film has good qualities, I will produce new work. And start teaching it again.
Oh, oh, oh — the possibilities!