Monday, 27 April 2015

Vintage is Back or did it ever go?

This day and age, cameras and camera equipment are getting more and more high tech and for the amateur photographer the ability to capture that perfect shot is made all that easier with Auto settings and Scene Modes. 

Equally, people can change a lot of information and detail on an image they have taken, using one of the many post production photography software suites that are available on the market, I myself use Lightroom 5 and Photoshop which have an endless amount of tweaks and manipulations that you can do to your images.

With all that, Vintage Cameras are being widely used more and more by photography enthusiasts and even by professionals; at weddings &  portrait and landscape photography.
The most popular Vintage being the Instant Cameras, where the image is produced on photography paper within seconds. 

There are 2 types that most people think about when you mention instant cameras, they are 'Integral', the likes of Polaroid cameras where the photo is ejected, you wave it around for a few seconds to let it dry properly. As well as being all the rage when they were first invented, instant cameras were extremely popular in the 70's and 80's. Polaroid manufactured this type of film from 1972 until 2008 when it seized production. They are still being manufactured however, by Fujifilm and The Impossible Project to name a couple. 
A 600 series vintage Polaroid (Packfilm) 

The other 'Packfilm' or 'Peel Apart' film is actually a step back from Integral but it is considered to produce the best quality image even though there is more of a hassle of taking the paper out once you have shot the image. The most popular film is the Type 100 for Peel Apart film and is manufactured by Fujifilm. Used on the iconic Land Cameras. There is something really magical about a photo that is produced in this way in my opinion.
A Model 95 Land Camera

A man called Edwin. H. Land was the founder of Polaroid. In 1926 he left Harvard University early to pursue his research on light polarization, 2 years later filing for a patent for the first synthetic polarizer. Whilst on holiday Land's 3 year old daughter asked him why she can't see the picture immediately that he had just taken of her, that same day Land comes up with the idea of an Instant Camera.
Edwin. H. Land 
On February 21st 1947 Land presents the first demonstration of the instant camera, he wows the audience at the Optical Society of America meeting.

On November 26th, 1948 the first Land Camera was sold for $89.95 at Jordan Marsh department store in Boston, Massachusetts. The Model 95 Land Camera becomes the prototype for all Polaroid Land Cameras produced during the next 15 years.

Although Polaroid has shut down it's manufacturing, it leaves an amazing history behind behind which is being kept alive by the 'Film' photography lovers of today.


Stuart Reeve