Forget high def photos! Vintage photographs is where its at

Polaroid or Instagram?

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Instagram photo of Polaroid camera. Source- Kathryn Wanoa

What is it about vintage effects on photographs that people love? Is it the timelessness, the creation of art, the need to share photos with communities, or is it simply a trend that has returned to modern day society? Two weeks ago my mother brought home a classic Polaroid Supercolor 635 CL camera that had been sitting in a storage cabinet for over 30 years. After searching for film around camera stores in Auckland, it was shocking to discover the scarcity and cost of the 600 film the camera requires. 14 packs including 10 sheets of photo paper per pack costs around $550 American dollars to purchase on Ebay. It’s no wonder people are opting for the Iphone photo application software Instagram recently obtained by Facebook for $1bn that offers users 15 free retro photo filters to apply to their photographs.

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Instagram photo board. Source- Kathryn Wanoa

The difference between both cameras is that Polaroid prints physical copies of images whereas Instagram is an iPhone camera and virtual photo board.

A question that could potentially affect Facebook must be addressed. If Polaroid cameras and film were easy to obtain and affordable to buy, would people choose to use Polaroid cameras again like they used to? Or are users more likely to stick with up-to-date internet technology where photos are taken and stored in cyberspace?

According to the Daily Mail, Instagram attracts an average of one million new users per day adding to the total user count of 40 million. This essentially means Instagram users make up “roughly 5 percent of Facebook’s active database.” Yet after posing the question on Facebook as to which of the two photo technologies individuals would rather use and why, Polaroid was the majority’s preferred choice. 16 out of 20 Facebook users that commented on the post picked Polaroid.

Five others “liked” the following comment, “Initially I was with Instagram because of its simple easy to use nature and I didn’t want to carry around a whole lot of photos at the end of the day but the Polaroid is not altered and keeps a physical picture that is real and an old school feel which I really like.” Of the four people that made Instagram their preference, their reasons for doing so was mainly for its quick on-hand accessibility.

A recent concept design created by Antonio De Rosa of ADR Studio’s may be the solution to the debate! An article from the Huffington Post has revealed images and information for a concept combing both Instagram and Polaroid to form the Instagram Socialmatic Camera. What’s cool about this device is that it incorporates Wifi technology to enable the camera to perform exactly how Instagram does with instant photo sharing on the internet as well as Polaroid benefits to allow users to print physical images via internal printing technologies. Read more about it here.

What is your opinion on this? Would you rather use a classic Polaroid camera for a more authentic photographic experience or would you rather stick with Instagram for quick and easy faux-vintage photo sharing? Would the new Instagram Socialmatic Camera be the perfect solution?

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