July 2012

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No. 485

Impossible's Sunday Brunch - Issue 9

Patrick Tobin, | 1488 days ago

Photo by Hannah Bryant

Hello again, Impossible fanatics. Welcome back to Impossible’s Sunday Brunch, our weekly series in which we showcase 5 tasty images that caught our eye over the course of the week.

This week’s selections provide a burst of color to get your Sunday started right. Images were taken by Hannah Bryant, Jodie Hurt, Ralf-Jürgen Stilz, Drew Hoffman and Marion Lanciaux.

…using the following film types: PX 70 Cool, PX 70 12/11 batch and PX 680

Keep shooting, friends! Your Impossible moment may end up in a future edition of Sunday Brunch!

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No. 486

8 Exposures...with Philippe Bourgoin

Patrick Tobin, | 1487 days ago

Portrait of Phillip, © Frenchcockpit 2011

Welcome back to 8 Exposures, our popular instant film Q&A series. This week, we bring you French photographer and author Philippe Bourgoin

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

The Polaroid cameras I most use are the SX-70 and the 600 SE.

In my usual rig, I also always carry a Hasselblad 503cx with a Pola back. My second best camera is a Holga with a Pola back, for specific projects, or to bring along at polameets at our usual waterhole in Paris.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

As a portraitist and a photographer of female nudes, I work on a one to one relationship with the models (no assistant, no MUA). Intimacy is a given.

When the first couple of test shots eject and develop, the idea of the picture I want to make becomes flesh, it can be touched, it’s alive: instant photography is all about sharing.

Trust rises: a “not so good” picture can be thrown right out the window, and I obviously can’t pretend that it’s going to look good when it comes back from the lab (and after two hours of Photoshop)…Flaws show right up…No lies, no disguise, we take it from there.

As a portraitist, intant photography is taking risks: the models know my work, obviously only the good pictures that I show, and they come to get the best out of me, in a short couple of hours. The challenge is of course on both sides, and most girls are willing to give their best.

And…Oh no! Once I rented a chic hotel room with gorgeous Ohana. We got in the room and I suddenly realized I forgot the bulbs of the spotlights at home…Or I’m on a good streaming shoot with lovely Elsa and I go get some fresh packs of PX 100 in the next room just to realize they have been roasting in the sun for the past hour…Or your darling Polaroid 600SE slowly dies on you just when you were going to get your best shot of the day…Or…Or…And you simply just go to come up with some good shots anyway…

There’s nothing like this thrill.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

This would go back to my early teens, in the sixties. An uncle of mine had a Land Camera and I can remember the sunny day he took pictures of my mother and I, by the beach. I could swear I remember the smell of the peel-apart film…On a later occasion, I vividly remember the sound of an SX-70 ejecting a picture that developed under my very eyes. The pure magic of this. The colors…In my youth, I didn’t have many reasons to rejoice, the world was grey as the buildings of Paris before André Malraux decided to clean them.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

After Polaroid stopped to produce films, there were quite a few months of despair…Then The Impossible Project came along, and I made it a rule to buy every single new film they released. I can say I have tried them all! My fondest memories would go to the PX 100 First Flush, because it was the first one, the first sign of the the rebirth of instant films. I remember the thrill of participating to the “Exploring PX Silver Shade” project on polanoid.net in 2010…

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

Women, women, women.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

Strangely enough, after years concentrating on light reflecting on soft female skin, I have a project in the making that is all about shadows…

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

After I checked my bookshelves, I would say Avedon, Mapplethorpe, Araki, Molinier, Berquet, Bourdin, Newton, Witkin, Penn…I’m not being very original here, I’m afraid. Moreover I must confess that in terms of influences, I’m so old school that I’d rather talk of Italian classical paintings or Greek statues…

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

I would say my wife, again and again as I did for the past twenty years.

About Philippe

Philippe was born in Paris, France, and went to New York University Film School. He directed a few short films and wrote a feature film. He was a record producer and music publisher in France and wrote a few hit songs. He has written a handful of short stories (published), with a book in the making. But basically, as a retired song writer, all he does now is shoot instant film.

No. 487

Ace Hotel x Impossible feat. in "Taken by Surprise" Book

Frank Love | 1487 days ago

Our unique collaboration with fabulous Ace Hotel New York is featured in a brand new book by German publishing house Gestalten: Taken by Surprise: Cutting-Edge Collaborations between Designers, Artists, and Brands.

Taken by Surprise highlights the best works of sophisticated collaboration in recent times, and presents Ace Hotel x Impossible next to examples such as Julian Schnabel and Maybach, Sagmeister and Levi’s, Olafur Eliasson and BMW, Terry Richardson and Colette as well as other innovative work by the likes of Damien Hirst, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea or David Lynch.

The Ace Hotel x Impossible collaboration features a special and limited PX 600 Silver Shade film, a refurbished Polaroid camera as well as the gallery show 24 Hours at Ace – currently on display at The Impossible Project Tokyo until July 8.

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No. 488

Viewfinder: Amanda Jasnowski in Europe

Patrick Tobin, | 1485 days ago

Hello Viewfinder followers! Welcome back to our feature that celebrates interesting projects that incorporate Impossible film. This week, we’re happy to bring you Impossible shots from Amanda Jasnowski recent trip to England and France…

In mid-may I spent two magical weeks with loved ones exploring a new (to me) land. In England: Seaford, London. In France: Paris. Two weeks was not nearly enough time, but it was certainly better than none.

In England there was a lot of walking, everyday. There were the green rolling hills of the countryside and the brilliantly yellow fields spreading across the landscape. There were also delicious home cooked meals in the lovely Parkinson household. Visits to Lewes, Brighton and Eastbourne. The history in those towns and the architecture was surreal. Endlessly beautiful! I was also able to finally meet two photo-enthusiast friends living in London for a very victorious and fun photo-walk!

In Paris there were beautiful train rides, lots of coffee and good bread. We stayed with my great aunt and uncle. It was really good to see them after 10+ years. I don’t see relatives too often so it’s really neat and interesting to see the spaces they live in and visually catch up on what I’ve missed. We spent every day out walking, visiting different places. The architecture was so amazing, so beautiful. All of my memories stored internally, through photos and writing. I would end up rambling if I continued with things we did, things I saw and experienced. It was all so great. Nearly too good to be true, just a dream. So, I snagged these magical slivers captured on IMPOSSIBLE’s film to remember that it wasn’t. There was a lot to soak up in only two weeks, but it was fun and a great adventure.

To see more of Amanda’s work, please visit her website

No. 489

8x10 Lego Camera + Impossible 8x10 Test Film

Frank Love | 1485 days ago

JUL 7, 2012
2-5pm
BMW Guggenheim Lab
Schönhauser Allee 176
10119 Berlin

There is not only our team around but also many other people who are trying to make the impossible possible in one way or the other. One of them is Jens Werlein – he is building cameras out of Lego!

For the BMW Guggenheim Lab he built an 8×10 camera, during the workshop in Berlin he will use it along with Impossible 8×10 film. Make sure to attend this great experiment or stay tuned to our or Jens’s blog.

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No. 490

The SX-70 Workshop Returns to the Impossible NYC Space

Josie Keefe | 1484 days ago

July 15th, 2012
10:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Impossible Project NYC Space

The Impossible NYC Space is delighted to present the return of our classic SX-70 camera workshop on Sunday, July 15th from 10 AM to 1 PM. The iconic SX-70 camera has become a rare vintage treasure, and is now revived to a new vibrancy with the release of Impossible Project COOL films.

This fully interactive workshop will explore the features of the SX-70, with a focus on shooting techniques and achieving the best results from the new Impossible films. We’ll cover topics ranging from shielding techniques to temperature control to identifying and managing each film type’s unique characteristics.

You will have the opportunity to shoot in and around our NYC space, located on the cusp of Soho, Little Italy and Chinatown, and then display and discuss your images before learning about image preservation techniques.

The workshop is priced at $50 and will include one pack of Impossible PX 70 COOL film, a PX Shade, and free camera rental if necessary. All students will also receive 10% off anything in the store on the day of the event. Limited places are available so call to reserve your spot today!

To register for this workshop, please call us toll-free at 212-219-3254 , 11am-7pm EST or email nycspace@theimpossibleproject.com.

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No. 491

Impossible hires a PHOTOSYSTEMS ENGINEER

Factory Team | 1484 days ago

Impossible has an opening for a Photo systems engineer. The position is located at Impossible’s production location in Enschede, The Netherlands. At this site we have a team of around 35 people, that produces Impossible’s instant film product and works on R&D. The atmosphere in the team is informal.

The photo systems engineer position will support Impossible’s drive to continiously improve the photograpic characteristics of their products. A self-motivated, hands-on and persistent engineering approach is necessary to find the optimum combination of the photographic components and make improvements to the system where possible.

YOUR TASKS
You report to the Quality manager. You’re responsible for the photographic quality of our film products. You select optimum combinations of photographic components for manufacturing. You perform measurements on photographic quality of film products. You conduct experiments and tests changes in component recepies. You collect and evaluate testdata from suppliers and factory experiments. You are a part of the R&D team

YOUR PROFILE
You have a Bachelor Degree in a technical field (preferably chemistry) and a passion for instant photography. You have good verbal and written language skills in English and preferable Dutch and German. You are able to interface with various personnel in different levels of skills, knowledge and experience. You are accurate, self-motivated, hands-on and persistent. You have a critical view on quality.

Please send your letter and resume until July 27 latest
to Nico Dikken n.dikken@the-impossible-project.com. or call him at +31(0)53 4848660 for additional info.

No. 492

8 Exposures...with Kim Oberski

Patrick Tobin, | 1483 days ago

Greetings, instamaniacs. Welcome back to 8 Exposures, our instant film Q&A series. This entry brings you Michigan photographer and good Impossible friend Kim Oberski

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

I primarily use a Polaroid SX-70 original but have recently added a modified Polaroid 110a with integral and pack film backs. Also on the camera shelf: Mamiya RB67 with integral film back, Polaroid rainbow onestep (which was my Grandmother’s), Polaroid 210 (what my mom used 40-some years ago), a Spectra, and a variety of Polaroid 600s.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

I love how instant film has taught me to let go of trying to make an image “perfect.” Sure a divot shows up, one of the chemical pods streaks, or the image is slightly out of focus; it doesn’t matter because those can be the very imperfections which make the image perfect.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

I don’t have an exact memory of when I first remember instant film, it seems instant film/cameras have always been around me somehow. Growing up, every time I looked in the coat closet, I remember seeing the case for a Polaroid 210 Land Camera sitting on the shelf. I remember looking at it, yet unfazed because it was always there. Looking through old photos always contained images taken on instant film. It wasn’t until 2009 when I bought a Polaroid One Step that I really took notice of instant photography. This past year, my mom passed down to me my grandmother’s Polaroid Rainbow OneStep and her Polaroid 210 Land Camera.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

This question is like asking a parent who their favorite child is. Sitting at my computer thinking, I can see all my old images shot in various TIP films/batches and there’s something I love about each of the films. I have used almost every single film TIP produced except Fade to Black and the Spectra Softtone. PX 70 PUSH was wonderful for the soft romantic hues it produced when not warmed, PX 680 First Flush was my go-to for a long time because of the slight retro feel, the silver shades for their timeless feel, and now PX 70 for the true color it produces.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

My favorite subjects to shoot is anything which includes a person. A long time ago, I learned I am not a landscape photographer. For me, people add a certain element to a photograph, they become the anchor in my images. Before almost every photo I take, I ask “what story/message am I trying to capture?” If I can’t answer the question, I don’t take the photo. This doesn’t mean every photo has deep meaning, many times I simply want to have a snap shot of today and what is occurring around us.

This past Memorial Day weekend, we were at my parents’ house and there was a box filled with photos from when my great grandmother and grandparents where younger than I am now. I remember looking at the photos filled with people I love and feeling a connection to the image. My grandfather, who suffered from MS, was standing and swimming in lakes – something I was never able to actually see him do. Then I think about a Kickstarter project introduced to me a week or so ago about a grandson wanting to scan all of his grandfather’s old slides to make into a book, the images are phenomenal!!! This gentleman took photographs of beautiful scenery, yet almost all were anchored with a person in the frame. In my mind, images with people makes me wonder about who they are (if I don’t know them already), what is their life like, or what are they thinking.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

My goal for this summer is to teach my girls the basics of photography, light, composition, and shutter speed. They each have their own Polaroid and film but tend to shoot a lot of objects laying around their bedrooms. You can only image what those images look like :). All the kids who come over to play are fascinated with my Polaroid and instant film so I would love for my kids to be able to document their summer vacation with friends on instant film. fingers crossed

A long term “project” I like to think I’m doing is capturing life. I’m always encouraged by photographers such as Vivian Maier, who didn’t use her camera to make money or try to win fame. She captured life around her because she could. My greatest hope would be that one day someone else will appreciate the snippets of my life as much as my family does.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

I hate naming favorites because I’m drawn more to specific images before I even know who took the photo. BUT a few instant photographers I am almost always drawn to their images are Emilie Le Fellic, Brian Henry, and Ludwig West. All three have a distinctive style I can pick out without even knowing who took the photo.

Sally Mann is also a huge favorite. Her work with wet plate collodion and her family is unique and inspiring. A few years ago, I was at the NYC MOMA and saw Sally’s image of her daughter sitting in a chair. The image was simple yet captivating. I walked out of the museum forgetting the name of the photographer but the image burned in my mind. Later that year, a friend posted the same MOMA image as inspiration on her FB wall, I’ve never forgotten Sally Mann since. What I wouldn’t do to learn from her.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

I think I would like to be able to take a photo of God in heaven, and still live to show everyone the photo.

About Kim

Currently, I’m taking a break from portrait photography work in Southeast Michigan to focus on keeping my flickr and blog filled with images of my own children.

To see more of Kim’s work, please visit her Flickr photostream. You can also follow her on Twitter at @kimunscripted

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No. 493

The Camera Museum: Polaroid's "The Button"

Patrick Tobin, | 1482 days ago

In the late 1970s, Polaroid began to manufacture plastic-bodied non-folding cameras for their SX-70 film, as an alternative to the more expensive folding SX-70s. Numerous iterations of these “OneSteps” appeared through the early 80s, with slight design variations and features. “The Button” is one of those iterations.

Like the other rigid plastic SX-70 OneStep models, The Button had a single-element plastic lens, fixed focus, electronic shutter, programmed auto exposure and a socket for flashbars or electronic flash attachments. What makes The Button unique is its two-toned grey coloring and stylized “The Button” typeface.

The Button works with any of Impossible’s SX-70 films which can be purchased HERE

To see a user manual for SX-70 box-type cameras like The Button, click HERE and HERE

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No. 494

Impossible's Sunday Brunch - Issue 10

Patrick Tobin, | 1482 days ago

Photo by Matteo Varsi

Welcome back to Sunday Brunch, our weekly series in which we showcase 5 tasty images that caught our eye over the course of the week.

For this week’s selections, we paid another visit to the Impossible Sample Gallery, where users the world over can submit their own images captured on Impossible film. As last week’s Sunday Brunch revolved around colorful images these shots celebrate the cool monochrome magic that is possible with our Silver Shade films.

Images come from Matteo Varsi, Giulio Speranza, Kouis, Katy Maziarz and David Dalglish, and were taken with the following Impossible film types: PX 100 UV+, PX 100 Cool, PX 600 UV+ and PX 600 Cool.

Keep shooting, friends. And be sure to submit to the Impossible Sample Gallery! Your Impossible moment may end up in a future edition of Sunday Brunch!

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No. 495

8 Exposures...with Kat White

Patrick Tobin, | 1480 days ago

G’day from Impossible, and welcome back to 8 Exposures! This week, we’re happy to bring you one of our favorite Aussies, graphic designer/photographer Kat White

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

My favourite two cameras are my Automatic 180 and my SX-70 Original.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

The characteristics of expired film, and the fact that it’s permanent and tangible.

I love seeing the reaction of passersby, in awe of a seemingly old camera still getting used. And even better when someone stops you to tell you they had a camera just like it!

I also love how passionate the instant/polaroid community is. About the cameras, the film, and always willing to share and collaborate their tips.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

Receiving a Polaroid iZone camera as a gift, then a One600, and it just grew from there.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

My favorites are PX 70 and PX 100. I never had the pleasure of experiencing Polaroid black and white film, so the PX 100 is a rare treat!

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

Nature, landscapes, architecture and geometry. Whether it’s close-ups or just taking in the entire surroundings, I love everything that nature has to offer. I also find myself drawn to angles and lines. Architecture definitely gives me plenty of inspiration too.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

I tend to find myself drawn to nature, but have a strong connection with design and typography. For years I’ve been planning on creating a series around the alphabet.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

Dan Ryan, The Gentleman Amateur, the lovely Emilie Lefellic, His & Hers, fellow Australians Amanda Mason and Dan Klaas, and too many more to mention.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

A local polaroider in every city I visit. So far I’ve met Emilie in Paris, Keico in Yokohama, Teresa in Auckland, not to mention all the peeps in Melbourne!

Thanks to Kat for taking part in 8 Exposures! To see more of her photography, please visit her Flickr photostream.
To purchase her book on Blurb, click HERE

Kat also has an iPhone App featuring her instant photography, which can be found HERE

Follow her on Twitter at @katwhite_

No. 496

Analog Feedback Night Recap

Josie Keefe, | 1480 days ago

by Dave Knapik

New York is full of photographers, but in a city this size it can be easy to feel lost in the shuffle. We created Analog Feedback Night to help build a community of analog instant enthusiasts, and give them a chance to talk about instant imagery in an intimate setting. On the last tuesday of every month, we open our doors to the instant film community, offering our space up so Impossible shooters can gather together to present their recent work on analog instant film to a group of like-minded peers. This informal gathering is modeled after art school critiques – but without the hefty tuition price tag.

This month, we had a great group of photographers, some of whom had attended previous analog feedback nights, and some new faces! Dave Knapik showed some of his NIGO shots. Bruce Fraidowit brought in samples of a new Macro 5 series he shot, using transparency laid over silver foil to create solarizing effects. Elisie Huston brought in more examples from her series of emulsion lifts, experimenting with new and wonderful textured surfaces.
Thanks also to Adam Custins , Frank Bowles , Abigail Smithson and Stixxx for their wonderful contributions also.
Click through the photos to check out a few samples of what we’ve seen, and come to our next Analog Feedback Night on July 31st – from 6-9pm!

No. 497

SNAP! x Impossible Photo Contest - June "Blonde" Winners

Patrick Tobin, | 1480 days ago

Photo by Nick Leonard

Hello, friends! We are happy to announce the winners from the first round of our ongoing photo contest in collaboration with SNAP! Magazine. The theme for June was “Blonde”.

Winning images come from Nick Leonard, Peter Plaia, Kim Oberski, Katy Maziarz, Jon Duenas, Scott Meivogel, Sarah Kirkham, Penny Felts, Tyler Tyndell and JW Lalo

The 10 finalists will receive $5 off their next Impossible purchase.

Congrats to Nick Leonard for his Grand prize winning image! Nick will receive a pack of Impossible Film and a mystery prize from Team SNAP!

The theme for July is FEET! Click here for details: https://shop.the-impossible-project.com/l/snapximpossible.

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No. 498

Take 5 - with the Impossible Factory Team

Factory Team | 1479 days ago

NICO DIKKEN

1. What do you do at the Impossible factory?
My official title is management & operational assistant and I’m more or less “the cement between the stones” here. I have a multi-functional job and most of the time I’m assisting the managing team and doing administrative work. And because of my formar experience at our big production machines I sometimes assist at the production department too. I like doing that because I have more variety in my work then and I’m not always sitting behind a desk.

2. How long have you worked for Impossible, how long for Polaroid?
I have worked for our project from the beginning on December 1st in 2008. At Polaroid I started on October 1st in 1973.

3. do you have a question or a message for the people shooting Impossible film?
I do have a message of which I think it’s an important one: DO NOT SHAKE OUR FILM, as suggested in the promotion campaign “shake it like a Polaroid” about 10 years ago. It is a persistent misunderstanding that you have to do that. DO NOT DO THIS. It will cause defects instead of making your image better.

4. What are your hobbies?

My nr.1 hobby is Scuba Diving. I love to go to nice diving places with my friends in the weekends. And when I go on holidays I will look for places where it’s nice underwater too.
Other hobbies are: watching sports (football most of the time; FC Twente is my favorite team) and movies and listening to music.

5. What is your favorite food?
My favorite food is what we (in my region) call: “aardappelpannenkoeken”. You may wake me up for that. “Aardappelpannenkoeken” are pancakes made of potatoes, kind of like rösti. I love it.

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No. 499

Viewfinder - "Fin" by Claire Oring

Patrick Tobin, | 1478 days ago

Hello, Impossibles, and welcome back to Viewfinder, our series chronicling interesting projects that incorporate Impossible film. This week’s entry focuses on Claire Oring’s “Fin” series…

Be warned when crossing paths with mermaids. They are the most mesmerizing monsters in the sea, seducing your senses with their bewitching beauty. All those who you fall pray to their charms you will quickly meet a horrific end.

The tail was handcrafted from silicon by The Mertailor. He’s a wonderful man who looks like a mix between a pirate and Santa Clause. When picking up the tail we had a long discussion on mermaid folklore. He’s very passionate about what he creates. I wanted to shoot on Impossible film because I love the texture and soft color palette. I wanted them to look like they could be from any era.

Claire wishes to thank her production assistant Jax Partlow and her model, Tess Oakland. To view a behind-the-scenes video of Claire’s shoot, click HERE

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No. 500

Artist In Residence: Momentum's Peter Plaia

Josie Keefe, | 1477 days ago

For the latest installment of Artist in Residence, we check in with Impossible photographer Peter Plaia whose work is currently on view in our New York Project Space as part of our Momentum exhibition. This stunning exhibition of PX100 UV+ and PX70 materials includes some of the richest tones and sharpest contrast yet. Plaia shares his experiences shooting for the exhibition, giving insight into his creative process.

I’ve always been a photographer that shoots from the hip. I see a subject, shoot a subject, and move on. Having a specific theme made the process more challenging but ultimately more interesting. This task made me think about the photographic process in a considerably different manner.

When I was invited to join the Momentum exhibit I was a bit nervous about the subject matter. After thinking through the concept of momentum, I decided to present the theme in an abstract manner. After several attempts, it became apparent it was more difficult than I had originally thought. I settled on a literal interpretation of the concept. The literal interpretation posed its own challenges, especially in the dead of winter. How could I incorporate my interests in architectural photography or my interest in the human form into movement or motion? I entertained several specific concepts ranging from jugglers to dancers to musicians and found out rather quickly how difficult it was to capture momentum on a large scale using live subjects. Once these attempts failed, I decided to scale down the subject matter and try to capture movement at a basic level. Small objects such as dominos, bouncing balls, and an old record playing, captured the spirit of momentum and provided impactful images.

The PX 100 UV+ is a gorgeous monochrome film, easy to work with, and creates wonderful images shot after shot. I found the PX 70 color shade film a bit more disagreeable. In many cases I thought my subject matter was lit properly. Once developed, the images were overexposed. As I became more familiar with the film’s tendencies, I was able to make the proper corrections to create stunning color images. The thing I find most wonderful about the Impossible Project film, is each exposure is like a miniature painting or small work of art. I appreciate the fact the Impossible Project has kept this medium alive. It gives photographers a unique and interesting alternative to the modern photographic process.

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No. 501

Dr. Love's Tips - Shooting Checklist

Patrick Tobin, | 1476 days ago

It’s time for another edition of Dr. Love’s Tips, where Impossible USA’s Camera Resource Manager Frank Love provides you with advice on how to get the most out of your Polaroid camera and Impossible film. This week: Shooting Checklist.

Yo, Camera Checklist, one-two, what is this?

Thanks to our Flickr thread looking for topic suggestions, we got a topic request for a ‘Shooting Checklist’. In effect, something people can use to make sure they have everything set before shooting. I think when it comes to being prepared, there’s more than one ‘list’, there’s the checklist for when you leave the house, and then there’s the checklist you have for every time you take a shot.

I’ll start with the ‘Before you Leave’ list. I think this is probably the easier of the two as you have more time to think through things. I also want to say there is no definitive checklist, it’s more what works for you, but these should help with just general items to keep in mind.

Before You Leave Checklist

1) Camera grab-and-check

The first and most important thing is your camera, you need to make sure you first have your camera in your bag, that it’s the right camera, that it works, and check if there’s still any film in it etc.

2) Film grab-and-check

Make sure you have enough film to shoot what you plan too, better to bring too much than not enough, and make sure it’s the right film for what you’re shooting.

3) Tools of the trade

This means you have something to shield your images, a place to keep them while processing or just until you get home that’s safe. Something to help keep film cool on a hot day, warm on a cold one.

4) Accessorize

Are you needing a close up lens? Flash? If you’re doing anything more specialized than straight photography with your camera, make sure you’re bringing the pieces you need to accomplish your ideas.

5) Security

This item just means make sure you’re prepared. If you’re doing a big paid shoot, you should probably have a back-up camera and plenty of extra film that you’re familiar with. Going through an airport, look into best traveling practices, etc. If you know you’ll need to leave your camera/film bag somewhere while you shoot, make sure it’s safe. If you’re just going out to shoot and walk around though, just make sure you have a comfortable bag you don’t mind lugging everywhere.

Now comes the think-on-your-feet checklist of what you do before you take nearly every shot. This is something you’ll want to tweak and integrate into your natural shooting techniques.

Think-On-Your-Feet Checklist

1) Take Cover

Shield your images. If you have a frog tongue on your cameragreat, this becomes automatic. If you’re using a folding camera, whether you’re using a PX Shade or the dark slide technique, you’ll need to be a little more vigilant as these aren’t permanently fixed on the camera. It should become second nature that you have something in place before you even look to take a shot.

2) Look before you Leap

You should have an idea in your head of where you camera is as you shoot, this means have an idea of how many shots you’ve taken so you don’t take a shot and discover you were out of film. Know where your Lighten/Darken wheel or switch is, and if you change angles or if you switch to a different kind of film; this could save you poorly exposed shots, and for sure if you close your camera and come back to it later, as the exposure settings can reset.

3) Flash Ahhahhhhh….

Depending on your setup for using a flash, odds are you’ll be familiar with it and will get into a rhythm of shooting between charging. If you’re using flashbars, keep track of where on the bar you are so you can know when to flip it or swap it for a new one without breaking up the shoot…and make sure you have enough flash bars. OR, you could pick up an Impossible Flash Bar

4) Think like your Camera

This one comes with practice, and will become natural to you over time. Polaroid cameras were designed to do all the thinking for you, which can be great, but if you’re thinking one thing, and it’s thinking something else, shots tend to not come out how you expect. What does that mean? It means you need to learn how your camera behaves and use it accordingly. This is most important with regards to exposure. Know when there are bright windows or sunspots in your frame and how your camera will meter that in comparison with how bright your subject is and where you put your L/D wheel or switch. Don’t think of it as if “it’s bright so you should darken”; the camera will know it’s bright out, but it won’t know if your subject is in direct sunlight or is shaded slightly, and that’s what you adjust for. This also means think like a sonar, so if you’re shooting through glass…it’ll wanna focus on the glass and not what you are intending to photograph. On SX-70s and SLR 680s, just look to focus, on Spectra look to the number in the VF, and with a Sun 660 there’s the AF bypass button under the flash.

Hopefully these are helpful reminders that you can build your own checklist around and work into your own system that becomes just part of how you shoot.

Oh, and don’t forget to keep your rollers clean,

-f

No. 502

"The Polaroid Collection" in Düsseldorf

Frank Love | 1476 days ago

until AUG 5
NRW-Forum Kultur und Wirtschaft
Ehrenhof 2
40479 Düsseldorf
Germany
by David Levinthal

Until August 5 you still have the chance to see one of the most inspiring exhibitions on analog instant photography at NRW Forum Düsseldorf, Germany, accompanied by a small but beautiful Impossible Pop Up Shop.

The exhibition shows a representative profile of the recently saved, legendary, European part of the Polaroid Collection as well as fresh photographs taken on new Impossible film by artists such as David Levinthal or Nobuyoshi Araki.

Click for all details

14
No. 503

The Camera Museum: Polaroid Sun 650 SE

Patrick Tobin, | 1475 days ago

The Sun 650 SE was one of many variations in the simple plastic-bodied 600 camera line.

A basic 600-series camera, the Sun 650 SE features a 116mm single-element plastic lens, fixed focus with a minimal focal length of 4 feet, plus a sliding close-up lens, allowing for photos as close as 2 feet, electronic shutter and a built-in electronic flash. It is similar to the Sun 600 series in design, except for the blue accents on the nameplate and the sliding close-up lens, and the blue button, which often signified a Polaroid special edition.

The Sun 650 SE works with any of Impossible’s 600-speed film. For a complete selection of compatible films, click HERE

To see a user manual for Polaroid 600 cameras like the Sun 650 SE, click HERE

15
No. 504

Chanel

Frank Love | 1474 days ago

The Japanese News Blog of Chanel is showing Impossible images with the latest fashion as well as accessories by Oliva da Costa.

Click here to view the complete PARIS-BOMBAY 2011/12 Gallery on Chanel News

No. 505

Impossible's Sunday Brunch - Issue 11

Patrick Tobin, | 1474 days ago

Photo by Emilie Lefellic

Hello again, Impossible fanatics. Welcome back to Impossible’s Sunday Brunch, our weekly series in which we showcase 5 tasty images that caught our eye over the course of the week.

This week’s images were taken by Emilie Lefellic, Vitalis Neufeld, Miguel Wan, Rommel Pecson and Ann Suckow McGarry

…using the following film types: PX 70 Cool, PX 100 UV+ and PX 600 Black Frame

Keep shooting, friends! Your Impossible moment may end up in a future edition of Sunday Brunch!

16
No. 506

8 Exposures...with Joep Gottemaker

Patrick Tobin, | 1473 days ago

Hello, Impossible friends, and welcome back to 8 Exposures, our popular instant film Q&A series. This week, we are happy to present you with a special 8 Exposures featuring one of our biggest fans and greatest friends, Joep Gottemaker

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

I mainly use my SX-70 original from 1972. I also own packfilm cameras, a Spectra and SLR 680 camera. I use the Spectra 1200 (with LCD screen) a lot too. The SX-70 goes everywhere with me. If it’s to Paris or just a dog walk, the SX-70 is in my pocket.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

I think the main reason is the fact that every Impossible is one of a kind. There is just that special quality to the pictures that no other medium has. Not 35mm or digital, the pictures just have that “magical” color.

And the fact that the pictures are instantly pushed in your hands. The sound of the motor, the picture coming out and the development. The thing with Impossible film is that you can’t predict what the picture will turn out like. With old fashioned Polaroid film, you could see the the picture develop before your eyes.
That’s so special about the Impossible films: you put them in your pocket, wait ten minutes (for color) and than there is the exitement if your picture turned out right.

I just love to go shooting in nature, because there is so much too see. I look through my eyes, and see what could fit for the image area of the SX-70 or Spectra. The trees, lakes and flowers, they are just very special to me. I usually also take my tripod to the fields, to take pictures of us all together as a family, which I love to photograph.

Impossible pictures are Impossible to recreate again, so that’s why I’m shooting them. To have my life documented on Impossible pictures for later.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

Well, that was back in 2006 when I bought my very first Polaroid 600 box type camera in a thriftshop for 2 euro. I asked my dad, how does this work? He didn’t know, so we went to the local photoshop and bought some original Polaroid 600 film. I was hooked when I took my first shot. There was just something special about those pictures.

I stopped shooting back in 2008 when Polaroid decided to discontinue all instant films.
I sold all my Polaroid cameras, and stopped shooting all together. 2 years later, I discovered the SX-70. I found the camera amazingly beautiful, so I bought one. I was obsessed! I bought all the 600 film that was left, and shot beautiful pictures.

My mother and father didn’t own a Polaroid camera back in those days.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

The PX 680 COOL film for sure! The image quality is outstanding, the image itself is very stable and has very quick development. My second favorite is the PZ 680 COOL film. It is basically the same as PX 680 COOL, but only wider.

I’m a color freak, so I don’t shoot B&W Impossible film at all. The colors of Impossible films go to a much higher level than Polaroid ever did. Even when you shoot PX 680 COOL in rainy weather, the colors will turn out amazing.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

Well, that’s a very easy question. When I get out of school or work, I step on my bike and go in the wild nature. I photograph what I see that needs to be photographed.
I also love to photograph beautiful women, but I’m a bit shy, so you don’t see a lot of portraits of them.

Beautiful buildings are also a favorite thing for me to shoot: old houses or old cities are amazing to photograph.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

I am going to work on a project: a tour around my country this summer vacation is in the planning. I’d love to shoot a model sometime with a vintage dress, ’60s hair and make up, that’s amazing!

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

I only know Flickr photographers, and there are some amazing ones around there! I really like the The Gentleman Amateur, abdukted1456, ten minutes, anniebee, Bradley Laurent and keep counting.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

I would love to photograph the nature and culture of other countries over the world, and take pictures of the architecture of the buildings. And beautiful people of course.

About Joep

Hi, I am Joep Gottemaker and i’m 18 years old. I live in the Netherlands.

Taking Polaroid/Impossible pictures means the world to me. I can’t picture my world without it.

To see more of Joep’s photography, please visit his Flickr photo stream

17
No. 507

Take 5 - with the Impossible Factory Team

Factory Team | 1472 days ago

JOS RIDDERHOF

1. What do you do at the Impossible factory?
I’m mostly busy repairing classic Polaroid cameras – there is nearly always something I can do for a sick camera – as well as helping in the warehouse when they are a busy there. Also, when help as an operator on the production floor is needed I’m on the spot!

2. How long have you worked for Impossible, how long for Polaroid?
I started working for Impossible in July 2009, from 1973 – 2008 I was working for Polaroid.

3. Do you have a question or a message for the people shooting Impossible film?
My hint would be to please check and clean your camera’s rollers/spreaders after using one film pack – this truly can stop a lot of problems happening.

4. What are your hobbies?
My hobbies are looking after my fish pond and the growing and cultivating of palms and other exotic plants.

5. What is your favorite food?
My favorite food is Chinese and Turkish cuisine.

18
No. 508

Viewfinder: Gregory G. Geiger's Farewell Portraits

Patrick Tobin, | 1471 days ago

Hello friends, and welcome back to Viewfinder, our series chronicling interesting projects that people are working on that incorporate Impossible film. This week, we present to you a project from Rhode Island photographer Gregory G. Geiger

About 9 months ago, I was moving to New England and I wanted to do something that would capture those last few moments with my friends in California, before I moved across the country.

The idea was to take a single Black & White Impossible Portrait of each of them and not look at the picture until I made it to Providence. I took each of these with PX 100 UV+ film and a single click of my SX-70, in my empty giant walk-in closet; I used my only remaining desk lamp, an old sheet for a back drop. As each shot was taken I dropped them in an empty film box. I took that box, taped it shut, and packed the whole set in a random final knick-knack box that was loaded into the back of my car and put on a shipping truck the next day.

My car took a month for them to ship to my new place in Providence. When I finally got the stuff out of the trunk a few days later, I finally got to see the pictures I took.

I love that some of the shots are my friends putting on a brave face, or a forced smile, or even the still face with the sadness of that last day.

To see more of Gregory’s work, please visit his website at www.lessthan4.com/

19
No. 509

INSTANT NIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP

Frank Love, | 1470 days ago

Thursday, July 26th
7:00PM - 10:00PM
The Impossible Project NYC Space. 425 Broadway, Lvl 5. New York, NY 10013
by Kisha Bari

Next Thursday, July 26th, The Impossible Project NYC Space will present for the first time, it’s SX-70 Night Photography Workshop.

In this advanced technique class, you will have the opportunity to learn the secrets to getting around the SX-70’s automatic exposure restrictions and working with different forms of light. This workshop is based on long exposures and will not cover flash photography, but open your instant world up to night time landscapes and painting with light.

The class will begin at The Impossible Project NYC Space and after a tutorial and light painting, will embark on a night time photo walk toward the East River.

The workshop is priced at $50 and will include one pack of Impossible PX 70 COOL film, free camera rental and all tools necessary except a tripod. All students will also receive 10% off anything in the store on the day of the event. Limited places are available so call to reserve your spot today!

Students must bring their own tripod to this workshop

To register for this workshop, please call us toll-free at 212-219-3254 , 11am-7pm EST or email nycspace@theimpossibleproject.com.

20
No. 510

8 Exposures...with Micaela Go

Patrick Tobin, | 1469 days ago

Welcome back to 8 Exposures, friends. This week in our popular instant film Q&A series, we’re happy to bring you California photographer Micaela Go

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

Recently, I’ve been using an SLR 680 I’ve borrowed from a friend (I’ve gone through 3 already), but I also use my SX-70, ProPack and have picked up a Minolta Instant Pro and hope to use it more often.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

Right before all those little compact digital cameras became so ubiquitous, I picked up my first SLR 680. I loved it because it was instant – I could take a photo and have something tangible in my hands within seconds, then see the actual image within minutes. Now, Impossible Project film adds so many more qualities to instant photography that I love. I’m drawn to the unpredictability of the film, and every image is unique. The novelty of having this one image and it being the only one of its kind is remarkable. There’s also the aspect of how ephemeral the images are; watching each exposure develop and seeing how it continues to change after days, weeks, and months is something I find rather exciting.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

I was probably around 12 years old when I found my dad’s old One Step (with film in it!) and I took it with me everywhere. I took pictures of my friends and family mostly (not much has changed since then).

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

I’m very fickle, so right now I’m all about the PX 680 Color Shade and I love the contrast of the PX 680 Gold Edition. I think my best shots are on PX 600 Silver Shade though, haha.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

Definitely people. I can’t stop doing portraits. As a wedding photographer, I love to get authentic, natural portraits, which is something I do whenever I photograph people in general.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

I’ve been wanting to go on more road trips in the coming months, so hopefully I can start a project involving that somehow.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

Richard Avedon is a huge influence for me. Steven Meisel, Mary Ellen Mark, Diane Arbus. Annie Leibovitz – especially her group portraits, which I find mesmerizing.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

Willie Nelson. Maybe Beyoncé, but only if she’s not all done up.

About Micaela

I’m from the San Francisco Bay Area, specifically San Jose, California. I’m a freelance photographer – mainly weddings (which I love) – and I also work at Stanford University (I work in a department that does digital archiving of really old books and other cool stuff).

To see more of Micaela’s work, visit www.faustphotographics.com/. You can also follow her on Twitter at @micaela_

21
No. 511

The Camera Museum: Polaroid One 600

Patrick Tobin, | 1469 days ago

In the early 2000s, Polaroid released one last line of instant cameras, including the One 600. Though similar in function and capabilities, these cameras are sleeker in design, opening and closing in a clamshell fashion.

The One 600 features a 100mm lens with minimum focus distance of 3 feet and a built-in electronic flash. Some models in this line omitted exposure control while others had the addition of a self-timer.

Please note that while it is possible to install the Impossible Frog Tongue in this camera type, it is not as simple as installing in the earlier 600 cameras. You will need small jewelers’ screwdrivers to access the factory frog tongue to remove it. We do not recommend attempting this unless you feel 100% comfortable with taking apart your camera.

To see a user manual for the One 600, please click HERE

The Polaroid One 600 camera works with any of the Impossible 600 films available HERE

22
No. 512

Impossible's Sunday Brunch - Issue 12

Patrick Tobin, | 1468 days ago

Photo by Andrew Jarman

Greetings, instant explorers! Welcome back to Impossible’s Sunday Brunch, our weekly series in which we showcase 5 tasty images that caught our eye over the course of the week.

This week, we wanted to get back to nature with a special wilderness-themed edition of Sunday Brunch. Images come to you from Andrew Jarman, Justin Goode, Mark von Minden, Tirolo Orientale and Jeremy Klapprodt.

Photos were taken using the following film types: PX 680 Cool, PX 70 Cool, PX 100 UV+ and PX 70 Nigo edition.

Get out there and keep shooting, friends! Your Impossible moment may end up in a future edition of Sunday Brunch!

23
No. 513

8 Exposures...with Steve Maniscalco

Patrick Tobin, | 1466 days ago

Greetings, instanteers! Welcome back to 8 Exposures, our instant film Q&A series. This week, we bring you Arizona’s own Steve Maniscalco

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

I won’t try to get an accurate count…something like 4 SX-70 Alphas, 2 autofocus Model 2 cameras, and 2 SLR 680s. Two of my SX-70 alphas have been converted to shoot 600 film by modifying the auto exposure circuitry. I have several Spectra cameras, including a Macro 5 SLR. Also, 2 Land 250s, a 195, a 180 and a 430. Oh, and a pack film back for a home-made pinhole camera.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

I tell people I haven’t got enough patience to wait for digital, and immediacy is certainly part of the equation. I love being able to share the results right away. I often take multiple shots so I can give away one. Putting a physical picture in a child’s hands and watching the reaction is priceless.

Instant photography feels very honest to me. When the picture is taken, you’re done. You can scan it and alter it if you like. You can share the altered version on line or in print…but somewhere, hidden in your attic perhaps, is the true image. That image is cropped the way you shot it, exposed the way you chose and is the product of your decisions at the instant of exposure.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

My father owned a Land 100 camera. He used the rangefinder as an opportunity for a math lesson.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible Project film type?

The newest PX-70 is incredible. From where I am, only an improved opacity layer is between it and perfect.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

For the most part, I’m an opportunistic shooter. I keep cameras available and I keep my eyes open. If I’m camping, you’ll see landscapes. As I travel, you’ll see small town Arizona. When I have dedicated photography time on my hands, you’ll likely see urban bits and pieces. Rarely, I’ll work up the nerve to shoot people.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

I’ve been going through my instant shots and I think it’s time I make prints of many of them. Enough prints, perhaps, for a show. The challenge being, of course, to find some place to hang it. If I do find that place, I plan on hanging the original instant right next to the print, keeping me honest.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

Landscapes were my first love, so I can’t go without mentioning Ansel Adams. I would also count Gustave Baumann, a woodcut printer, as a major influence, perhaps more even than St. Ansel. I love Paul Strand and Alfred Stieglitz and find their work amazing. Honestly though, I spend less time looking at work by “famous dead people” and far more time with the great stuff being done right now by people I “know” online. I’m confident that some of those folks will be the new “famous dead people” in a couple of generations.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

I’m completely enamored with an Australian singer named Sia. I’d like to follow her around for a week or so with a Pentax 6×7 and hope to capture some of the personality that comes out in her performances.

To see more of Steve’s photography, visit his Flickr photostream. You can also follow him on Twitter at @SteveMPhotog.

No. 514

Christmas in July

Josie Keefe, | 1466 days ago

Its that magical time of year again! Our annual Christmas in July sample sale returns to the NYC Impossible Project. You’ve waited for months, and now the time has come to stock up on all your Impossible favorites, heavily discounted and priced to move.

We’ve cleaned out the warehouse to bring you a cornucopia of exclusive deals and hard to find accessories. We’ll have salvaged vintage cameras for just $15, including pack film and other rare cameras. There’ll be crazy deals on rare old generation film stocks, bruch bags, impossible accessories, vintage camera filters, flashes, and more secret goodies sure to delight any instant film enthusiast. Each day we’ll unload a new stock from our hidden stash, so stop by all weekend.

This exclusive sale will last for two days in the NYC, this weekend July 28-29th. We’ll be open from 12-6 both days. Don’t miss your best chance to grab your favorite Impossible goodies.

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No. 515

Viewfinder: Fernanda Montoro's TED Talks Images

Patrick Tobin, | 1464 days ago

Welcome back to Viewfinder, our blog series that chronicles interesting projects that incorporate Impossible film. For this entry, we are happy to present you with Fernanda Montoro’s Impossible images from TEDxMontevideo

I am a big fan of TED talks, so I felt very honored when the organisers of TEDx Montevideo commissioned me to work on a TED ‘memory album’ for their upcoming edition. They wanted my personal view on the event, a sort of backstage memoir. The location was a special one too: Teatro Solis, Uruguay’s oldest and most iconic theatre. For all of this, I knew immediately that it had to be shot entirely on IP film.

After talking with Impossible Project’s Anne Bowerman, who is always ready to advise and help whenever I need, we decided that PX 100 for the SX-70 and PZ 600 for the Spectra camera were the perfect films to capture the spirit of the event. They both work really well under low light conditions, and give those crisp, classic black and white tones that we all adore. I also added some IP film I had in my stash, mainly PZ 680 color shade and PX 600 First Flush film.

They all proved to be good choices and I felt immensely happy for being able to capture the incredible and unique energy that surrounds a TED talk on my Polaroid vintage cameras. It was a day full of insight and creativity, surrounded my amazing thinkers, and I got to capture it all on IP film. I couldn’t be happier.

Thanks so much to Fernanda for sharing her images with us! To see more of her photography, please visit fernandamontoro.com. You can also follow her on Twitter at @fermontoro.

26
No. 516

Artist In Residence: Momentum's Bradley Johnson

Josie Keefe, | 1463 days ago

Each month we check in with a few of our favorite artists whose work is currently featured in the NYC project space, to learn about their experience shooting our film. This week we talk to Bradley Johnson, whose beautiful portraits are currently on view in our Momentum exhibition on our north wall.

I was intrigued by the concept of shooting within a theme. I think that it’s interesting to see how each artist interprets the theme. However, momentum was so open to interpretation, that the task of shooting within the theme seemed almost daunting. It could be conceived in so many different ways, but in the end I decided that the film itself, and the spirit of the impossible project personified the momentum theme perfectly.

The film (and the company) has come so far in such a short amount of time. The color palette of the new PX70 film is excellent. It is very reminiscent of the highly coveted expired time zero film. My experience with the film was a little frustrating at first, but I managed to produce some beautiful images through a process of experimentation.

I’ve been asked many times about my process of Polaroid portraiture. I think that it is most important to use good lighting. I’ve found that the best light is natural, and best natural light is bright, yet indirect. I always keep my eye out for the “perfect light”. It often occurs in and around areas with a lot of buildings, because there are many surfaces for light to bounce off of and diffuse. Alley ways, and court yards are often a good place to explore. I also like to shoot into the sun (with the sun on the model’s back). This is a more difficult situation to shoot in, but it can yield great results if you remember to overexpose. The camera’s electric eye will try to underexpose the photo since it detects an abundance of light. If you dial the exposure wheel toward lighten by one or two marks (one or two marks from where the camera would normally expose correctly), proper exposure can be achieved. I look forward to shooting more, and becoming better acquainted with this wonderful film!

27
No. 517

8 Exposures...with Balthazar Simões.

Patrick Tobin, | 1462 days ago

Greetings from 8 Exposures Land! It’s good to see you again! This week in our instant film Q&A series, we spoke with Balthazar Simões

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

My favorite Polaroid cameras are my SX-70 (of course) and a Polaroid 350. I have a Spectra, too and a Polaroid Studio Express 484 that has 4 lenses and is quite fun.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

Because it’s an experience of true magic. Because it’s an instant tangible artifact. Because each image is one-of-a-kind and can’t be reproduced.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

My Grandpa was always the one with the cameras when I was growing up. I can still remember the feeling of watching a polaroid develop when we went to visit my grandparents for Christmas. Most things become less magical as we grow older, but it persists with my experience of instant film. My Grandpa passed away two summers ago and I was recently given all of his cameras. Sadly, he no longer had his Polaroid cameras, but he had quite a few film cameras that I now cherish. One of the cameras still had some film in it, and I just had it developed last week. All the photos were of this vase of tulips. I eventually was able to figure out that they were taken on their last wedding anniversary before he died. At that point he could hardly see and it’s precious to me that those were probably the last photos he ever took.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

I’ve adored a few batches of PX 680 (in particular the beta test batch and the batch that had a stripe defect). The PX 70 Color Shade has been very good to me. I have some PX 70 Color Shade Cool on the way (at last!) and I can’t wait to try it out. I’ve taken many shots with various types of the Silver Shade films that I love, but my true love is color.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

People. I’m so curious about people. I also get obsessed with certain colors and tones and patterns.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

My biggest ongoing project is my letter and Polaroid project. The letter is my favorite writing medium, and a few years ago I decided to let anyone request a letter from me. A little while after I began writing letters, Zora Strangefields (one of the lovely ladies behind Tickl Magazine) requested one and I included a Polaroid with her letter. After that, I thought that I should be sending Polaroids with all the letters. What I like about both the letter and the Polaroid is that they are each unique and can’t be reproduced. At this point I’ve sent out almost 500 to people all over the world. I choose each Polaroid carefully for the person I’m writing to, and it gets connected to the context of the letter. I scan each letter and Polaroid before I mail them out. This year I plan to put together a book of a small selection of them.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

Picking favorites is so hard for me. I’ll give it a shot: Henri Cartier-Bresson, Jan Saudek, Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Guy Bourdin, Traci Lynn Matlock, Barbara Nitke, Helmut Newton, Sophie Calle (she’s obviously much more than a photographer). There are so many I’ve left out.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

Old fishermen in Portugal. And Sophie Calle. She’s my hero.

About Balthazar

I’m from a small seaside town in Portugal. I live curiously.

Thanks to Balthazar for taking part in 8 Exposures. You can follow him on Twitter at @callmebalthazar.

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No. 518

The Camera Museum: Polaroid SX-70 Time Zero AF Model 2

Patrick Tobin, | 1461 days ago

As many consumers had difficulty with the manual focus on their original SX-70s, Polaroid began producing autofocus models in 1978. The Time Zero Autofocus Model 2, introduced in the early 1980s, differed from the 1978 version only in that the body is plastic instead of chrome-plated. It utilized the same advanced sonar technology.
When the shutter button is pressed halfway, a series of ultrasonic chirps is emitted from an electrostatic transducer located under a plate over the lens. These chirps travel to the subject and bounce back to the camera’s receiver, alerting the camera to the subject’s distance, and the lens is turned on a motor to focus accordingly.

The Polaroid Time Zero Autofocus Model 2 features a 4-element 116mm glass lens, manual or autofocus capabilities, with a minimum focal length of 10.4 inches, electronic shutter, programmed automatic exposure and a socket for flashbars or electronic flashes. Another nice feature is a socket for an electrically-actuated remote shutter release.

The Time Zero AF Model 2 works with all of Impossible’s SX-70 films, which can be purchased HERE

To see a user manual for the SX-70 Sonar models, click HERE.

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No. 519

Impossible's Sunday Brunch - Issue 13

Patrick Tobin, | 1460 days ago

Photo by Ashley Saldana

Greetings, friends! Welcome back to Impossible’s Sunday Brunch, our weekly series in which we showcase 5 Impossible images that made a splash with us over the course of the week.

This week, we’re having a pool party! These cool, refreshing images come to us from Ashley Saldana, Jenny Jo Patton, Dan Meade, Abigail Thompson and Kim Oberski using the following film types: PX 680 Cool and PX 70 Cool.

Keep shooting, friends. And be sure to submit to the Impossible Sample Gallery and the Impossible Flickr Group! Your Impossible moment may end up in a future edition of Sunday Brunch!

30
No. 520

8 Exposures...with Penny Felts

Patrick Tobin, | 1459 days ago

Photo by Zia Khan

Hello instanteers, and welcome back to 8 Exposures, our instant film Q&A series. This week, we’re happy to bring you Penny Felts, who has produced a series of diptychs, with each representing a different decade of the 20th century…

1) What kind of Polaroid camera(s) do you use?

Most of the time I use SX-70s, an SLR 680, Land Camera 180 and a Holga with a Polaroid back. I also have a 600SE, Reporter, Polaroid Pinhole 80, Polaroid Pathfinder 110A and a Polaroid Big Shot that I use occasionally.

2) Why do you like instant photography?

What can I say, I love instant gratification with blur, softness, magic, and without pixels. It’s pure happiness.

3) What is your earliest memory of instant film?

When I was a kid, my parents bought one of the cheap plastic 600 model cameras, I’m not sure which one, but I remember the first time that I held a polaroid in my hand and watched it develop. I was hooked right then and there.

4) What’s your favorite Impossible film type?

Right now it is definitely the newest PX 70. I absolutely love the colors. It’s so versatile under different conditions. You can make them really bright, or soft and warm.

5) What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

I’m a corny photographer at heart. It’s not particularly a subject, it’s more of a daydream or a story that I’m going for. The model in these photos calls me a ‘concept photographer’.

6) Tell us about a project you’re working on.

Well, I just finished a project which you see here, where I collaborated with one model (Elle Long), to go through 8 decades of fashion and cameras.

I’m also starting a small personal project of portraits and stories of people who are 70+. The idea began when my son mentioned to me how much he enjoyed when my father tells him little stories of his life as a boy. I will be shooting the portraits on the new Impossible COOL films.

7) Who are your favorite photographers, instant or otherwise?

Of course there are far too many to list, but here are just a few: Famous ones that come to mind are Lillian Bassman, Edward Steichen, Clarence Sinclair Bull, Richard Avedon and Margaret Bourke White.

Other photographers who I look forward to seeing images from on a daily basis are: Philippe Bourgoin, Ludwig West, ‘The Gentleman Amateur’, Akshay Bhoan, ‘milkysoldier’, ‘carmendevos’ and ‘Bastiank80’ from Flickr. There are many, many more, but the last photographer whom I’ll list here is of course the most personally important to me, Zia, who mentors and inspires me everyday. I fell in love with his photography before I met him, and then I fell in love with him.

8) If you could take a photo of anyone or anything what would it be?

My mom in the 1950s.

About Penny

I am currently living in Nashville, working in the medical field so that I can make enough money to pay for my film addiction.

You can follow Penny on Twitter at @pennyfeltsnanni

No. 501

Dr. Love's Tips - Shooting Checklist

Patrick Tobin, | 1476 days ago

It’s time for another edition of Dr. Love’s Tips, where Impossible USA’s Camera Resource Manager Frank Love provides you with advice on how to get the most out of your Polaroid camera and Impossible film. This week: Shooting Checklist.

Yo, Camera Checklist, one-two, what is this?

Thanks to our Flickr thread looking for topic suggestions, we got a topic request for a ‘Shooting Checklist’. In effect, something people can use to make sure they have everything set before shooting. I think when it comes to being prepared, there’s more than one ‘list’, there’s the checklist for when you leave the house, and then there’s the checklist you have for every time you take a shot.

I’ll start with the ‘Before you Leave’ list. I think this is probably the easier of the two as you have more time to think through things. I also want to say there is no definitive checklist, it’s more what works for you, but these should help with just general items to keep in mind.

Before You Leave Checklist

1) Camera grab-and-check

The first and most important thing is your camera, you need to make sure you first have your camera in your bag, that it’s the right camera, that it works, and check if there’s still any film in it etc.

2) Film grab-and-check

Make sure you have enough film to shoot what you plan too, better to bring too much than not enough, and make sure it’s the right film for what you’re shooting.

3) Tools of the trade

This means you have something to shield your images, a place to keep them while processing or just until you get home that’s safe. Something to help keep film cool on a hot day, warm on a cold one.

4) Accessorize

Are you needing a close up lens? Flash? If you’re doing anything more specialized than straight photography with your camera, make sure you’re bringing the pieces you need to accomplish your ideas.

5) Security

This item just means make sure you’re prepared. If you’re doing a big paid shoot, you should probably have a back-up camera and plenty of extra film that you’re familiar with. Going through an airport, look into best traveling practices, etc. If you know you’ll need to leave your camera/film bag somewhere while you shoot, make sure it’s safe. If you’re just going out to shoot and walk around though, just make sure you have a comfortable bag you don’t mind lugging everywhere.

Now comes the think-on-your-feet checklist of what you do before you take nearly every shot. This is something you’ll want to tweak and integrate into your natural shooting techniques.

Think-On-Your-Feet Checklist

1) Take Cover

Shield your images. If you have a frog tongue on your cameragreat, this becomes automatic. If you’re using a folding camera, whether you’re using a PX Shade or the dark slide technique, you’ll need to be a little more vigilant as these aren’t permanently fixed on the camera. It should become second nature that you have something in place before you even look to take a shot.

2) Look before you Leap

You should have an idea in your head of where you camera is as you shoot, this means have an idea of how many shots you’ve taken so you don’t take a shot and discover you were out of film. Know where your Lighten/Darken wheel or switch is, and if you change angles or if you switch to a different kind of film; this could save you poorly exposed shots, and for sure if you close your camera and come back to it later, as the exposure settings can reset.

3) Flash Ahhahhhhh….

Depending on your setup for using a flash, odds are you’ll be familiar with it and will get into a rhythm of shooting between charging. If you’re using flashbars, keep track of where on the bar you are so you can know when to flip it or swap it for a new one without breaking up the shoot…and make sure you have enough flash bars. OR, you could pick up an Impossible Flash Bar

4) Think like your Camera

This one comes with practice, and will become natural to you over time. Polaroid cameras were designed to do all the thinking for you, which can be great, but if you’re thinking one thing, and it’s thinking something else, shots tend to not come out how you expect. What does that mean? It means you need to learn how your camera behaves and use it accordingly. This is most important with regards to exposure. Know when there are bright windows or sunspots in your frame and how your camera will meter that in comparison with how bright your subject is and where you put your L/D wheel or switch. Don’t think of it as if “it’s bright so you should darken”; the camera will know it’s bright out, but it won’t know if your subject is in direct sunlight or is shaded slightly, and that’s what you adjust for. This also means think like a sonar, so if you’re shooting through glass…it’ll wanna focus on the glass and not what you are intending to photograph. On SX-70s and SLR 680s, just look to focus, on Spectra look to the number in the VF, and with a Sun 660 there’s the AF bypass button under the flash.

Hopefully these are helpful reminders that you can build your own checklist around and work into your own system that becomes just part of how you shoot.

Oh, and don’t forget to keep your rollers clean,

-f