My Precious is on Life Support...
By Ritchard Ton
31 Mar 2008
...and they are pulling the plug...
Whether it was the "digital photography revolution" or corporate mismanagement, my precious will soon die and the only "Doctor" that can save it now has himself passed away.
Polaroid will no longer make Polaroids.
I know this is not a usual "My Precious"...I'm not talking about a single camera but a photographic icon that will soon disappear. I love all things Polaroid, from their integral film like time zero and 600 film and the sx-70 cameras, to their "peel apart" pack film like 669, and even their small izone film. Polaroid film has a unique ability to go beyond the ordinary photo.
Here is one of my typical "Polaroid Moments":
I have a habit of taking my Polaroid cameras (one loaded with time zero, another loaded with 600) with me when I go places so that if I get bored, I'll have something to do.
I was with my family waiting for the local Mardi Gras parade to start. Waiting for a parade can be tedious so I pulled out the time zero sx-70 and started to take a photo of a Dorito from a lunch we had packed. As I was opening up the camera, an elderly gentleman, late 70's early 80's, came up to me and started a discussion on his experience with his old alpha sx-70 camera. A little while later, his wife called him back to his seat to wait for the parade (I guess she was feeling neglected).
I start to go back to my Dorito. By this time, a lady with her three kids appeared next to me. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the kids looking at my camera so I knew that this was something new to them. As I pressed the button on the camera, the whirr of the motor and the sound of the film ejecting piqued the interest of the kids and they came up and started asking me questions about the camera and why the picture was not on a digital screen. I told them that this was a Polaroid the picture would appear in about a minute. The children started to get more and more excited as more and more of the photo started to develop. They passed the photo around and made comments like "wow" and "cool" and "Why would you take a picture of a Dorito?". A little while later the parade had started and they turned their attention to catching beads.
That is what makes Polaroid magical...it's something more than just taking a picture.
By the way, I tried to photograph the parade but kept getting pelted in the head by moonPies and beads...my wife thought this was hilarious...it's a good thing I'm not on life support.