Polaroids style - I haven't improved!

Joined
Feb 2, 2005
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35,159
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Arizona
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Chris
Here are two pictures I took using polaroid equipment and film. This portrait of William T. is from 1971. It was taken with a brand new SX-70 camera. The camera tech was very cool, and my friends and I made dozens of pictures using long exposures, combined with multiple electronic flashes (utilizing an also new technology: thyristor controlled flash lamps.) Here's one of mine:

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I took this picture of Diane J. about 6 months ago:

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As you can see, my interpretation of an informal, environmental portrait hasn't changed much over four and a half decades. I don't focus so well now, which fits nicely with my "goal: to get worse" concept of growth.

The cameras and films are:

An original SX-70, and the daylight film that accompanied the camera's release. My friend and co-creator, Garry K. bought the camera at a trade show the day it was released. It came with a new type of film, that developed in daylight as you watched (Wow!) He also got one of the new-fangled 'auto exposure' flash units. Lots of possibilities here, and you can see them actualized the portrait of the young man. You can still buy SX-70 film from Polaroid Originals.

The second picture is of Diane J., architect of the Phoenix College Science building. As you can see, my vision of the person is similar, but blurier. Would you call that stagnant, or well developed? I used a Polaroid One Step (vintage) camera and 600 color film which I can get at my local Best Buy. Rather than carefully compose and focus the shot, I now hold the camera naturally in my hand and snap pictures without looking through the viewfinder.
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Messages
35,159
Location
Arizona
Real Name
Chris
Yeah, I get that, and I have ordered directly from PO, they're great. But I shoot polaroid sporadicly. When I get the bug, it's nice to just stop at BB and grab a couple packs (it costs about $1.20 a pack more this way then ordering directly) then out to shoot. Pre-planning takes so much, um ... preplanning! To me, it's worth ($1.20 ÷ 8 shots) fifteen cents a shot not to have to wait. Blame it on my senior onset add.

If I wanted to save money, I'd be shooting digital Fuji Instax, right?
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Messages
35,159
Location
Arizona
Real Name
Chris
Thanks Panther, I've seen that. I'm a big fan of medium format, range finder cameras, such as the Bessa III or GF 670. The Instantkon RF70 is a great addition to that lineage, and it uses Fuji wide film - I haven't tried it. Since the RF70 is 900 bucks, I'll hold off for a while (I've got a fixed* income now), but it's intriguing none-the-less.

Now the 'free film thing' ... it actually seems like a long shot gamble. You need to submit, to facebook or instagram, a selfie (of the camera) that garners 45 or more likes a day. That's doable if you've got 45 friends and relatives willing to do something minor for you every day, but otherwise, good luck getting likes with pictures of a camera. Try having a pretty girl hold it.

* as opposed to broken
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2005
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1,366
Location
Winter Haven, florida
I suspect many of us have never "changed" at how we look at the world. I met an old friend for lunch a few months ago. We were best friends, he was best man at my wedding, etc. Although we would have an occasional phone call, we had not actually seen each other for about 20 years. I was showing him some of my work, and he mentioned he still had a print of mine hanging in his office from 1974. Yup, that print is 45 years old. He said it looked essentially the same as my present work. Different subjects, same style. It actually came as a shock to me as I thought I was blazing through new concepts. I pulled out a box of my old black and white work, he was right. My present images are printed larger. There is more detail, more "sharpness". But my new work is not really any better. That understanding was actually somewhat depressing, but after thinking about it I basically thought "who cares?" So I grabbed my camera and went back to doing what I know how to do.
Gary
 

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