1970’s Polaroid – Still Got It After All These Years

Polaroid has still got it after all these years. As proof, and for some Friday fun, check out this 1970’s retro how-to video/advert/documentary. Still cool and amazingly poignant.

Polaroid – the original social network.
Snap a picture, show your friends = Create. Share Sustain.
Note the range, accessibility and the diversity.
Pretty impressive.

Reminder to check out the Impossible Project, plus one of my recent Polaroid snapshots after the jump.


[btw, just picked up the polaroid vid from my homie, APE.]

42 Responses to 1970’s Polaroid – Still Got It After All These Years

  1. randy August 6, 2010 at 6:08 pm #

    i love the kind of archaic simplicity that polaroids offer. still on the hunt for a good one. not an actual hunt. i’m sort of hoping that i’ll find one at a garage sale or buried in my attic. that’s the way they’re supposed to be found. buying one at a camera store just doesn’t feel right.

    • Mark August 6, 2010 at 6:17 pm #

      Poloroid…the original “point and shoot”

  2. Andrea August 6, 2010 at 6:13 pm #

    Totally in love with the polaroids! hard to find that in Italy and very expensive.. we have to say thank’s to the impossible project crew!

    GO Chase!

  3. Aaron August 6, 2010 at 6:37 pm #

    Some nice shots in that video. Goes to show that it’s not the camera.

  4. john hildebrand August 6, 2010 at 6:37 pm #

    who doesn’t love a good polaroid camera. I have a couple myself and wish i could shoot with it a lot more

  5. John August 6, 2010 at 6:43 pm #

    Which is the best polaroid? for lets say street photography a day in the city?

  6. William Pruitt August 6, 2010 at 6:51 pm #

    Was that Billy Zane the actor in this video?

  7. Dane August 6, 2010 at 7:02 pm #

    Polaroids are pretty good fun. Miss my old one.

    Funny how that concept has kind of been taken over by phone cameras.

  8. Jason Edwards August 6, 2010 at 7:29 pm #

    Who needs digital !!??
    I want my Polaroids……

  9. Brian August 6, 2010 at 7:35 pm #

    Did anyone check out the end credits?! Very interesting and a historical footnote themselves.

    Charles and Ray Eames made the film (the Eames’ are 2 of the most notable designers of the 20th Century for those not familiar).

    Academy Award winner Elmer Bernstein did the music.


  10. Daniel Fuentealba August 6, 2010 at 7:38 pm #

    this camera is amazing… I got the SX-70 a few weeks ago but I with no film (as many around the world)… well I got lucky and I found 2 charges so I was able to find out that first the camera was working, and second… I need some practice to get good at it haha… anyway here you have the video showing the process with some little help of my minime http://blog.dfuentealba.com/?p=5436

  11. aL August 6, 2010 at 1:51 pm #

    super camera!
    Just it could have a selftimer ;)

  12. Lucas Harger August 6, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    So I have this exact camera. SX-70. And I got it from a antique shop.

    Ive shot a few pictures with it and they are all turning out with an overwhelming orange tint.

    Any ideas as to why? Just old?

    • Valerie August 7, 2010 at 5:07 am #

      What kind of film are you using? I’ve found old sx-70 film to turn out very cyan-colored, some with leaks and weird stripes etc. (check the rollers after you’ve used up the pack, there might be paste sticking all over them, you want to clean them before using new film)
      My old 600 polaroids turned orangy reddish brown. If you’re using the new Impossible film, PX 100, however, you might have used the film in too hot conditions, they then turn out orange brown too.

  13. Daniel August 6, 2010 at 3:04 pm #

    What a great video. Love the look of the SX-70 and very cool images. Thanks for sharing.

  14. James Bunch August 6, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

    Seems very similar to the “best camera” idea. I mean, it was a camera that eliminated a lot of the technical aspects so that, as stated, you could focus your attention on the things you were photographing.
    It’s amazing that in a day and age where there is so much technology and such we are finding that it is enjoyable to get back to the simplicity of just taking pictures, but isn’t that what its all about?

  15. Christopher August 6, 2010 at 3:56 pm #


  16. Michal Fanta August 6, 2010 at 4:49 pm #

    I love Polaroid cameras. I also love the “today’s Polaroid camera” called the iPhone.
    (snap a picture, process it, send it to friends via email)

  17. Kenny August 6, 2010 at 7:49 pm #


    Just have to say this is really cool! Thanks!

  18. tristan August 6, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

    The ad was made by Charles and Ray Eames. They could make anything look good.

  19. Greg Brave August 7, 2010 at 4:16 am #

    Thanks Chase for this video, I really enjoyed watching it. I wonder if it is possible to get a polaroid camera these days…

    • Valerie August 7, 2010 at 5:08 am #

      Absolutely possible, search eBay. Shouldn’t have to pay more than 50-100 euros for a nice SX-70 / SLR 680.

  20. Art Rietveld August 7, 2010 at 6:37 am #

    Love this video. I remember when the SX70 first came out . It
    Generated the same type of buzz as the iPhone.
    I have this same model and now want to pull
    It from my camera collection and start using it
    Again. Where can you buy film?

  21. Calvin August 7, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    Thanks Chase! Strangly enough, this old video has inspired me to shoot more for myself. I think that a lot of us or at least I take digital for granted. Polaroid had the right ideal years ago. Never before have we had to opportunity to just shoot for the love of photography like now. No film packs or flash cubes, just pure shooting. I could shoot a thousand shots today. I could chose to share them all or toss them at no cost. Thanks again. I really enjoy stuff like this.

  22. Brian August 7, 2010 at 3:23 pm #

    Charles and Ray Eames produced this! And Elmer Bernstein did the music! Cool historic footnote.

  23. Sean August 7, 2010 at 4:15 pm #

    I never took the chance to get into Polaroids that much. I wish I had.

  24. Jason August 8, 2010 at 8:08 am #

    How fitting this post is. I just bought a q-light one/snap polo with the rainbow stripe down the front at a flea market for $2.50 when i was out of town. it takes sb-70 film i think but i was going to make a filter for it so i could use 600 speed. Fun stuff.

  25. Donnie Bell Design August 9, 2010 at 7:15 am #

    Entertaining AND informative. I think it says something that Polaroids are still cool.

  26. Dan Kaufman August 11, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

    I’m humbled.

    good call Chase. Thanks.

  27. adam August 13, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    Incredible. Thanks.

  28. Gato August 13, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

    Polaroid saved my creative life. After 30 years of photography (pro and amateur), in the mid-’90s I had to give up my darkroom. From then until I went all digital around 2000 Polaroid was my main creative outlet. After a 60-hour week in corporate mid-management, on the weekend I could put in an hour or so playing photographer with Polaroid. Maybe it wasn’t great art, but it gave me an outlet and helped keep me sane — more or less.

    I used a ton of SX-70 and more than a few packs of 4×5 in those years. I still have a very nice SX-70 in the closet, if only I could get film.


  29. Ajani August 14, 2010 at 9:17 am #

    Very cool!

    This video makes me want to get a polaroid camera even more.

    I’m from Toronto, Canada and they’re very difficult to find. Same goes for the paper used in polaroid cameras.

    Kind of frustrating.

  30. David Dvir August 14, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    Very cool!

  31. James August 21, 2010 at 9:50 am #

    There’s still demand for Polaroid film and companies are still producing it – there’s still life in the old dog. Check out http://www.the-impossible-project.com. Commission payments can be made to…

  32. Atay B. August 25, 2010 at 12:03 am #

    It’s quite late to have a SX-70 (a great camera!!!) but today there are FujiFilm alternatives.. I have ordered one small instax camera and it’s on the way from Japan. Since the idea is shooting with Polaroid, obtain the glossy-unpredictable colors Instax film is the new way.
    I am writing these before taking shot firh instax but so far examples on Flickr are good enough.
    Main point : instax cartidges are accessible and affordable

  33. Catalin August 25, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    Gotta love the simplicity of it… really makes me want to get a Polaroid.

  34. Mark Jones from Toronto September 12, 2010 at 8:15 am #

    Hi Chase and Staff,
    I just wanted to say that it’s not just your art and your finished products that are truly inspirational, but it’s this ecosystem type environment that you have created. I love the way you and your team learn new things and build on those ideas in creative ways. You constantly promote an underlying wellness through your interactions and work ethic.
    I absolutely love the fact that someone like me can go to your site for the first time and get inspired about life through your work. The idea of trusting each member of your team with their own individual skill sets and prowess underscores the true meaning of something being greater than the sum of it’s parts. It’s no secret that you have discovered something fantastic and wonderful. I think it’s bigger than that. If I could say one thing about what you and your team is doing, it would be –

    “To understand kindness, beauty, compassion, and the willingness to give, is sometimes a hard thing to grasp in this day and age. Our lives sometimes don’t allow us to understand how simple it is to obtain a good life. How giving and sharing can do more for your well being than anything else. I think it’s magical that I can become emotional about my surroundings after being inspired by your group. Chase, you guys are not just artists, you are teachers on how to make people inspired in ways that can transform their own individual lives

  35. Arthur Smith February 22, 2011 at 4:56 am #

    Chase- I watched your presentation from CES, and really am unsure as to what direction the “new” Polaroid is going in. Please visit my blog, which covers all things Polaroid, from Automatic Land Camera photography, through today’s Polaroid 300, at:


    You are a talented, creative artist.


  36. how many calories to lose weight August 4, 2011 at 3:11 am #

    This comment is to say thanks, i dont comment frequently, but when i do it’s often for something extremely great.


  1. leetlady.com - August 7, 2010

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