Polaroid Camera Tips and Tricks for Perfect Pics

polaroid camera

Taking photos is a great way to share memories with your friends and family. However, in this digital age it’s rare to actually have physical copies of a picture. Nor are you able to have them right away. That’s where the polaroid camera comes in. In today’s blog, we’ll talk about this instant device, how it works, and some tips and tricks for getting the perfect set up. 

What is a Polaroid Camera?

A polaroid camera is an instant camera that uses self-developing film to create a chemically developed print shortly after taking the picture. “Polaroid” is the name of the brand that created consumer-friendly cameras that could be used by the public. However, most people call any instant camera a polaroid regardless of its manufacturer. It’s like how we refer to petroleum jelly as “Vaseline”, bandages as “band aids”, and tissues as “Kleenex”. The words also refers to the individual pictures that the camera rolls out.

The polaroid camera was at its most profitable in the 90s, but saw a disparaging fall in sales in the 00s. But, thanks to the ever changing cyclic nature of fashion and trends, it saw popularity again thanks to its promotion from influencers and VSCO girls alike. 

How Does It Work?

So we know what polaroid cameras are, but how do they work? Here’s a step by step of what’s happening when you snap a picture:

  1. To set up the camera, a pack of sheets of plastic negatives covered in reactive chemicals is loaded in. When the picture is taken, one “negative” is rolled to, and held in front of, the camera lens for an instant.
  2. Polaroid cameras work like all analog cameras. When a picture is snapped the camera’s shutter opens to let in a pattern of light that reflects the photographed image. The negative is exposed to this light which is covered in three layers of silver compounds. Each of these chemicals absorb a different primary colour of light: red, blue, or green.
  3. The rollers then eject the photo. Whilst doing so, they also press down to release the reagent chemical held in the white borders of the film. This chemical covers the surface and causes the reaction that produces the photo. 
  4. Once out of the camera, it takes a while for the film to turn from black to grey to colour. Polaroid advises against shaking the film during this process. 

Tips and Trick for Perfect Polaroid Pictures

Polaroid cameras can be quite fickle. It’s possible to capture pictures which are too shadowy or too blown out from overexposure to light. Here are some tips to make the most of your limited film supply:

About the Author

Lydia B.

Lydia B.

Lydia is a Gooroo Courses Tutor at Gooroo, a tutoring membership and online learning platform that matches students to tutors perfect for them based on their unique learning needs. Gooroo offers math, English, ESL, Spanish tutoring, and more.