my mind has been in a bit of a whirling state lately. as much as i love a good shoot, i’ve really just been wanting to make prints and such with the photos i’ve already got in my library. capturing digital shots or even shooting film is really just the first movement in a photograph’s performance. ultimately, they all should be printed and presented. that’s why i’ve been working on building up my darkroom again and making a UV printing box (more on that in a later post).
but i’ve also been intrigued by the idea of trying to get my hands on a Polaroid camera and experiment with instant film. there are lots of creative possibilities for transfers and emulsion lifts as well as just the look and feel of a Polaroid print. i had a couple of disappointing losses on ebay where i was out-bid on auctions for used Polaroid cameras, but recently i managed to win a Polaroid Automatic 250.
the only real problem with the camera was that the battery was corroded onto the contacts inside the battery compartment. and the battery that it originally used was a 4.5 volt that isn’t even made anymore. a post to one of my regular photography forums provided a quick answer and i was off to radio shack to look for a 4xAAA battery holder. i had to use a dremel tool to remove one of the 4 battery compartments from the 4-battery holder, then re-wire the holder slightly to get 4.5 volts out of it instead of the normal 6 volts you’d get from 4xAAA batteries. i kinda suck at soldering, so a few hours later i had power to the camera and it seemed to be making reasonable estimations of shutter speed to control exposure.
the film was actually quite a bit more expensive than the camera and i was really reluctant to load any into the camera until i had something really compelling to shoot with it. but ultimately, i decided to shoot a pack of 10 frames just so i could get a feel for how the exposure system worked with the camera (it’s all-automatic, no manual override). and as you’ll see in the next post, this was a good idea. some of the more experimental techniques i wanted to use with the exposed prints would require some practice before trying them on real pieces of artwork!