Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A Tangible Past or A Hipster Side Project?

For the past few months, I have been running around shooting photos with a Fuji Instax and, more recently, a polaroid SX-70 Sonar. 

I honestly don't remember what got me started on the throwback instant photo kick. I guess since I have been shooting more video and spending so much time looking at a computer screen I needed some time away from the digital workflow. Now if I had enough space and a little extra time, I would set up my darkroom equipment in my duplex. I guess in the absence of such luxury, I jumped into the instant film world.

And I've started to see these cameras fitting into my greater work. On a video shoot in November, I took a quick portrait of two of my subjects and gave them the shot. They fell in love with it, and I think it might have put them a little more at ease as I started to roll on the interview. I’ve discovered that handing people a photo as a keepsake seems to help connect them to me.

In general, photos connect us to people we might not know, but they also do a great job of connecting us to our own pasts. In December my wife and I went down to El Paso, Texas, my hometown. While there, I was going through a box of old photos and saw more than a few polaroids and other prints my parents had snapped back when I was a kid. Looking at the photos in my hands took me back in time by giving me a very tactile link to the past. Memories that were probably buried in my head came forward.

If I have kids I hope they find my boxes of prints and polaroids, helping them link back to their past.

OK, enough with the corny crap. Check out these photos 

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