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Black and White New York City in an Instant

Whoever said digital is the only way to go when one needs instant satisfaction? Pick up a vintage Polaroid camera and some films and voila! Believe me, analogue instant is even better than digital instant; after all, it saves you the time that takes to make them "look like" they are analog! Here is my Polaroid diary of a summer vacation spent in the amazing city of New York!

Last year was exciting in more than one way! One of the things that made it specially memorable is probably the fact that I spent my summer in New York City. I have been to this amazing city a few times before but only to spend a couple of days or so. However, life in NYC as a tourist is completely different from life as a local! And even though I wasn’t a local, I wanted to get the experience one way or another; the solution to my dilemma was to become one, even if for a limited period of time! So guess what I did? I packed my bags, found a room in an apartment full of musicians for a couple of months (thanks to Craigslist!) and set out to experience what, I could already tell, would become one of my greatest adventures ever!

Well, a couple of months can be rather long without anything to do. So, as a budding photographer, I knew what I had to do. That is, to somehow get the most out of the situation through photography. I worked on quite a few projects during my stay, but the one I will be sharing today is the one where I was trying to capture New York City through what makes the city what it is: the people.

Street photography has never been my forte, so what I did was go up to people and ask then if it was okay for me to take photographs of them. What I found interesting was that the camera you hold makes all the difference when approaching complete strangers for their cooperation. Yes, Polaroid was the answer! True, that lately, analogue has gained a lot of popularity, but even so, a Polaroid is still an object of mystery, and sometimes even a luxury, to many. Having a bulky Polaroid gets people interested, and even if some may be skeptical about letting a complete stranger take their photo, chances of them giving in is higher with something as fancy as an old school Polaroid camera.

As soon as I found out this interesting fact, the next thing to do was figure out the details of my project and prepare for it. It was rather simple: take Polaroid photos of every day New Yorkers around the city. To jazz it up a little, I focused on my Polaroid Spectra camera, and used only The Impossible Project’s limited edition Black Frame Spectra film. The outcome was, to say the least, fascinating!

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written by maliha

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