1/20/2016

Fun with Instax and Film





When I think film, and I'm gonna try not to sound like a Grandma, I think of the nineties. Instant pictures that we didn't obsess over retouching, airbrushing, and filtering. They were naturally imperfect, candid and let's face it, rather nostalgic. In a day and age where everyone's wielding a smartphone, film is inevitably going to be shoved aside. However, with the recent revival of film and the Instax cameras, it's beginning to gain a cult following from a new generation as well as the tick of approval from its nostalgic users of days gone by. I was lucky enough to be sent one of the Fujifilm Instax 8* cameras for review last month and today I thought I'd share my thoughts on it, the good and the not so good...

For those who aren't familiar, the Instax 8 is a new, multicoloured sibling of the Fujifilm family. The Instax 8 prints pictures that are about the size of your standard business card, but there are other units which print the larger more traditional style polaroid photos. The one I received was a pale blue colour which I loved and it has a range of different light settings which the camera adjusts to. It's so easy to use and with the click of a button you can print your own photo and wait for the magic image to appear. 

The good: Instax 8 is going to appeal to people across the board due to its nostalgic properties and with the nineties revival of late that is hardly surprising. You cannot beat having a tangible photo in your hands and due to the nature of the pictures, you're bound to get a unique photo to keep. It's a great tool to have to capture mementoes from special occasions as well of course as the candid moments of everyday life. I love the size of these images as well, they're perfect for placing in your wallet and in journals or letters. 

The not so good: We'll start with the glaringly obvious; film is still a crazy expensive commodity. You can buy 2 10-packs of film for anywhere between 25-30 dollars. Do the math, one shot is quite pricy. It's definitely not something you're going to be wanting to buy all the time so film is something you'd use sparingly if you have one of these. Another thing is film photos are unpredictable. That's both the beautiful and ugly side of things. So long as you're not expecting groundbreaking photography with these I don't think you'll be disappointed but it is frustrating sometimes to find an image has become overexposed or blurred. Maybe I'm just bad at using these but it's just something to be mindful of. 

So all in all, I really enjoyed the Instax. It's definitely a novelty item and due to the cost of film it wouldn't be something I'd use all the time. There is something special about film though that digital cannot beat. I was quite sad to hand back this baby blue treasure. Instax 8, it's been real.

*PR Sample provided for review.

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