I was born in 1996, so I didn’t live in a world with polaroid cameras nearly a long as some other people did, but I remember them. As a kid, they were fascinating. Watching a picture form right in front of your face, shaking it to make the magic happen faster. I loved using them, took pictures of everything. But as technology advanced, polaroid cameras faded into obscurity.
But much like most vintage things, they’re back.
Now, I love old stuff. I have a nice collection of records, my wallet is an old knit clutch I picked up from an antique store, my end table has a record player INSIDE of it (ahh, the 70s). And a few months ago, I discovered that there was a company that was still making polaroid cameras. And they are adorable.
Coming in a variety of colors, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 creates credit card sized polaroids. They run about $59.99. I was in love. I looked up accessories for them: camera straps, cases, lens magnifiers. I knew I wanted one. But as someone who was about to move into my first apartment, with all of the expenses that brings, I decided to wait.
And I’m proud of myself, because I’ve been very patient. But yesterday, it happened.
We finally had a little extra money to spend. So after dinner, we headed to the electronics section of Walmart. And there they were, locked on a peg by the cameras. I looked at the colors (blue, red, white), and decided on white. Simple. Sleek.
Of course, as my luck goes, we bought the camera at night. So I didn’t really have a lot of picture options. So I started simple: I took a picture of my dog.
Every time I look at it, it look like a picture taken in the 90s. Like I have a time-traveling dog. I also took a picture of my front door: “First Apartment”. I’m carrying it with me now, waiting to find something I find worthy of my film. I want to tell everyone about it. Despite it being ‘old technology’, I still felt a sense of awe as I watched the picture come to life.
Polaroids, much like paper-mache volcanos or magnets, are small bits of magic. I had it when I was a kid and now I have it again.
Never forget your magic. xx