Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Old School IS the New Cool: The Polaroid Photography Revolution


This blog is created to intrigue any individual who likes photography, but more specifically polaroid photography. Photography is a very important thing in my life, and I absolutely love being behind the camera to capture a perfect moment. To me it is a form of art, artistic expression if you will, telling a story by a stolen memory. Photography is there to inform, shock, tell a story, or a snapshot of a memory that will last forever. Thus the reason for creating this specific blog is to appreciate and celebrate the artistic form of Polaroid Photography.

The digital era especially in photography has grown so fast in such a short period, that we tend to miss the sentimental value behind a photograph and that the memories that is forever printed on a piece of paper. Based on personal opinion, polaroid photography is the top choice to add an artistic and instant feel to memories. Why? Some might ask, well of course polaroid photography is instant, it is in the moment, no photoshop or digital editing, just a beautiful moment captured instantly, no prejudice, and no judgement. Polaroid images are precious, it makes the memory more memorable as it should be. It creates this authentic look and feel that you will not get with digital photography. It is the real deal.

However, polaroid photography is seemingly more expensive than any other form of photography. Why? Because of the scarcity of the film and the camera. Polaroid photography, however is trending once again, and it is proof that polaroid photography is and will forever be seen as a form of artistic expression, it will also always be the best way to make the most boring of moments  fun.

This blog will answer questions, enlighten, and educate readers on polaroid photography. This blog will also provide a brief history of polaroid cameras and how it evolved, why it still is a favourite among some artists.

Brief History

No one would have thought that polaroid photography would have been seen as a form of artistic expression. In 1947, Edwin Land introduced his first instant camera, the Polaroid. He hired Ansel Adams to be his consultant (G.P. 2013). Edwin announced that: “The purpose of inventing instant photography was essentially aesthetic” and also stated that it is “to make available a new medium of expression to numerous individuals who have an artistic interest in the world around them” (G.P. 2013). Land believed that the polaroid camera would revolutionise the way photography was used and viewed. It became instant, even the most simplest photo taken with a polaroid camera had a sense of artistic flair. From here on, Adams introduced the polaroid camera to artists like Andy Warhol and Robert Rauschenberg. They introduced fine-art instant photographs. The polaroid camera became so popular that in 1960 almost half of America’s household had owned one. (G.P. 2013).

Ten Artists that Gave Praise to polaroid Photography

Ansel Adams

Ansel Adams was a consultant for Edwin Land. Before Ansel joined the polaroid camera career, he was a well-known landscape photographer. His job as a consultant was to test new films as well as equipment. He loved using a polaroid camera so much that it became the process he used for the rest of his career. Ansel stated that “most of his successful photographs from the 1950’s and onward have been made on polaroid film. (Waters. 2009).

Minor White

Minor White was a friend of Ansel Adams and was drawn to the idea of the instant image. He found the lighting of the image taken with a polaroid camera interesting. (Waters. 2009).

Andrè Kertèsz

Andrè bought himslef a polaroid camera after the death of his wife, which is said to have helped him overcome depression from the loss of his wife. (Waters, 2009).

Walker Evans

Walker was a well-known american photographer that was famous for his documentary photography of the great depression that took place during the 1930’s. he was given an unlimited supply of polaroid film which ended up with 2 500 polaroids. However he believed that only people with experience in photography should use the polaroid camera. (Waters. 2009).

Andy Warhol

Andy was fascinated with the polaroid camera. He believed that it was a great camera and stated that there is something about the polaroid camera that makes the face just look perfect (Waters. 2009). He also mentioned that he would take a ton of portrait images and then choose the best. (Waters. 2009).

Robert Mapplethorpe

Robert was known as one of the most controversial photographers of his time, because of his homoerotic photographs. He believed that it helped him to develop his style. (Waters. 2009).

Helmut Newton

Helmut was a fashion photographer that believed that the polaroid was a “wonderful sketchpad” (Waters. 2009).

David Hockney

David was a British artist that created a fresh perspective by taking multiple polaroids and piece them together to create photo collages. (Waters. 2009).

Dash Snow

Dash used the polaroid to snap memories that he would not remember the memories of the previous night, because of his drug filled night. (Waters. 2009).

Chuck Close

Chuck used the polaroid to help him with his ultra-realist paintings. (Waters. 2009).

Why Polaroid Photography

Polaroid is instant, gives a certain authenticity to the photograph, and makes the memory untouched by the digital age. Polaroid photographs has this certain type of artistic feel no matter what is captured in the image. Polaroid gives the opportunity of artistic expression to pretty much anyone. It is beautiful.

Polaroid Forever

Even though polaroid photography is scarce, it is forever. It is a type of artistic expression that will stand in the test of time. It is easy to use and any person can use it. Personally it is easier and faster as well. It is instant, it is authentic, it is more real than any other type of photography.


This blog proves that polaroid will always stay as a form of art, and that it will stand the test of time. It proves that even the most famous of artist created art with the polaroid and loved doing so.

Music Videos that is accociated with Polaroids

Suede – Attitude: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqOpMl4HD2U

Trisha Yearwood – Your husband is cheating on us: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbG06WFsoyg

2024 – Cage the Elephant: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7akhTSf0JY

Hey Hey Hey (we’re all gonna die) – Jack’s Mannequinn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2K8I1aC32KM

Outcast – Hey ya: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWgvGjAhvIw

Outcast – Hey ya Lyrics
One, two, three, uh!

[Verse One - Andre 3000]
My baby don't mess around
Because she loves me so
And this I know for sure.
Uh, But does she really wanna
But can't stand to see me
Walk out the door.
Don't try to fight the feelin'
'Cause the thought alone is killing me right now..
Uh, thank god for mom and dad
For sticking two together
'Cause we don't know how...

Hey... ya.
Hey ya.
Hey... ya.
Hey ya.
Hey... ya.
Hey ya.
Hey... ya.
Hey ya.

[Verse Two - Andre 3000]
You think you've got it
Oh, you think you've got it
But got it just don't get it
'Til there's nothing at all
We get together
Oh, we get together
But separate's always better when there's feelings involved
If what they say is "Nothing is forever"
Then what makes, then what makes, then what makes
Then what makes, what makes, what makes love the exception
So why you, why you
Why you, why you, why you are we so in denial
When we know we're not happy here...
Y'all don't want me here you just wanna dance

Hey... ya. (OH OH)
Hey ya. (OH OH)
Hey... ya. (Don't want to meet your daddy, OH OH)
Hey ya. (Just want you in my Caddy OH OH)
Hey... ya. (OH OH, don't want to meet yo' mama OH OH)
Hey ya. (Just want to make you cumma OH OH)
Hey... ya. (I'm, OH OH I'm, OH OH)
Hey ya. (I'm just being honest OH OH, I'm just being honest)

[Bridge - Andre 3000]
Hey, alright now
Alright now fellas yeah!
Now what's cooler than bein' cool?
I can't hear ya'
I say what's, what's cooler than bein' cool?
Alright, alright, alright, alright
Alright, alright, alright, alright
Alright, alright, alright, alright
Alright, alright,
OK now ladies (yeah!)
Now we gon' break this thing down in just a few seconds
Now don't have me to break this thing down for nothing
Now I wanna see y'all on your baddest behavior
Lend me some sugar, I am your neighbor
Uh!Here we go know...
Shake it, shake, shake it, shake it (oh oh)
Shake it, shake it, shake, shake it, shake it, shake it (oh oh)
Shake it, shake it like a Polaroid Picture, shake it, shake it
Shh you got to, shake it, shh shake it, shake it, got to shake it
(Shake it sugar) shake it like a Polaroid Picture

[Verse Three - Andre 3000 (Repeating "Shake it" in background)]
Now all Beyoncé's and Lucy Liu's
And baby dolls, get on the floor
(Get on the floor)
You know what to do.
You know what to do.
You know what to do!

Hey... ya. (OH OH)
Hey ya. (OH OH)
Hey... ya. (OH OH)
Hey ya. (Uh oh, Hey ya)
Hey... ya. (OH OH)
Hey ya. (Uh, uh, OH OH)
Hey... ya. (OH OH)
Hey ya. (OH OH)

Cover Design

Image source: Jarrett, A. 2013. My Polaroid Wall. Available: http://thesweetlight.com/2013/04/my-polaroid-wall/[Accessed: 9 July 2015].


Believe in Instant. n.a. Polaroid + instant film blog. Available: http://believeininstant.com/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Bonanos, C. 2012. It’s polaroids world- we just live in it. Available:
http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424127887324439804578108840573155684[Acessed: 12 April 2015].
Bonanos, C. n.d. PolaroidLand. Available:http://www.polaroidland.net/instant-photographytoday-a-guide/[Accessed 12 April 2015].
Conway, S. n.d.The art of polaroid. Available:http://www.susannahconway.com/the-art-ofthe-polaroid/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Cox, J. 2009. Polaroid Love affair-Instant filmaking and fashionable comeback in Berlin. Available: http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/polaroid-love-affair-instant-filmmaking-a-fashionable-comeback-in-berlin-a-642218.html[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Davies, L.2013. Bruno Bisang: the polaroid-loving fashion photographer. Available:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/photography/9778940/Bruno-Bisang-the-Polaroid-lovingfashion-photographer.html[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Dunn, J. 2013. Getting more serious about polaroid photography (a complete guide).
Available:http://contrastly.com/polaroid-photography-guide/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Edwards, O. 2012. How the polaroid stormed the photpgraphic world. Available:
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/how-the-polaroid-stormed-the-photoraphicworld-98275389/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Finnen, D. 2013. Dan’s guide to buying used polaroid cameras. Available:
http://danfinnen.com/article/buying-guide-for-used-polaroid-cameras/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Impossible. n.d. Dive into instant photography. Available:https://www.the-impossibleproject.com/gettingstarted/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Impossible. n.d. Instant Lab week. Available: https://www.the-impossibleproject.com/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Impossible. n.d. Old School skipped School. https://www.the-impossibleproject.com/polaroidcamera/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
n.a. 2013. 5 tips for polaroid beginners. Available:http://mortalmuses.com/2012/11/01/5-tipspolaroid-beginners/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
n.a. 2013. Instant Forever. Available:
http://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2013/04/polaroid-photography[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
O’Hagan, S. 2010. The Polaroid Revival.
Available:http://www.thegaurdian.com/artanddesign/2010/apr/05/polaroid-impossible-projectinstant-photography[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Polaroid. n.d. History of Polaroid. Availacle: http://polaroid.com/history[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Polaroid. n.d. Tell your story. Available: http://www.polaroid.com/[Accessed ; 12 April 2015].
Sherwin, A. 2014. Learn the art of instant photography fro the prince of polaroid himself. Available: http://resourcemagonline.com/2014/09/art-of-instant-photography-princepolaroid/42111/[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Soto, E. 2014. The Importance of polaroid – why I still love to shoot with instant film. Available:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/emily-soto/the-importance-ofpolaroi_1_b_6120662.html[Accessed: 12 April 2015].
Waters, F. 2009. Ten artists in praise of polaroid.
Available:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/photography/6243393/Ten-artists-in-praise-ofthe-Polaroid.html[Accessed: 12 April 2015]. 

No comments:

Post a Comment