Student voices: Patience pays off in many waysI purchased on old (“vintage”) Polaroid camera for about $3. I had no intention of operating it. I merely appreciated the aesthetic and decided to display it in my room.
By: Marnie Sciamanda, Rosemount Town Pages
About a year ago, I purchased on old (“vintage”) Polaroid camera for about $3. I had no intention of operating it. I merely appreciated the aesthetic and decided to display it in my room. From the limited amount of information I could find on it, it is anywhere from 30 to 45 years old. I discovered through further research that the “pack film” that the camera requires is still manufactured, however, it is very expensive. In fact, the film costs much more than the camera itself. I went ahead and took a chance and purchased a box of film and to my amazement, it actually worked.
The process, however, is extremely tedious and delicate compared to the standard digital camera I have grown up with. Knowing how long to develop the film is always a challenge and is variable depending upon the weather outside. Further complexity includes setting the amount of light and the distance from which the photograph is taken in comparison to the subject.
All this work and expense, and there is not even a guarantee that the picture will turn out correctly. The inconvenience of using my “new” camera brought me some perspective on how spoiled and convenience-oriented not only my generation, but all of society has become. I easily get frustrated carrying out a simple task that was seen as standard procedure not very long ago.
When a picture does not come out as a mess of smeared ink and chemicals, the feeling is absolutely amazing. My effort actually paid off and materialized into something much more treasurable than an instantly-created digital picture.
Of course, this case is extremely specific — I am assuming very few others in Rosemount are using a Polaroid Land Camera on a regular basis — but it really is the “little things” that make life interesting.
While it often seems I cannot focus on completing my homework or making decisions about college, knowing in the back of my mind that I have the chance to experiment with my camera that day, and create some potential prints, is motivation. The little things, as cliché as it sounds, really can get us through the more important aspects of our lives.
Marnie Sciamanda is a senior at Rosemount High School. Her column appears every other week.