Tuesday, September 02, 2008

The forgotten Polaroid

Just a short post today. Soon I'll be writing something up on 126 film and cameras, but for now...I was out shooting a couple weeks ago and managed to lose a Polaroid under the seat of my truck -- unpeeled. So I discovered it recently when I was cleaning up. It was completely dried up. I had to force peel it and all I got was a Polaroid covered with hard, black goop. Well, after messing around a bit, I ended up with this:

So, how did I do it? Well, I was digging through my box of Polaroids this morning and found this (ID-UV shot with a Colorpack III)...

Same thing happened. Left it my car (I think for a month at least) unpeeled, found it, peeled it, and got mostly black stuff. Nice, so now I can show you what I did! Very easy, a no-brainer really. Filled the sink with water and let it soak for a couple hours.

It softens up the dried up developer into a nice, slimy sheet...

...which can then be peeled off.

Simple as that! Rinse it off for good measure.

Let it dry for a couple hours.

And there you have it. Forgotten and re-remembered.

Decent effect, really. Also, it gets little water blisters on it that collapse when it dries. I may see how long I can actually soak a Polaroid, what happens... I assume that this would be a way to do transfers? Soak it long enough until the emulsion slides off...have to mess about a bit more in the future.
Again, soon a post on the mysterious 126 film and my (so far unsuccessful) attempts to make new 126 film. Until then!


  1. Anonymous5:13 PM

    That's exactly how you do a transfer. Provided you can keep the gelatin intact, you can transfer a color peel-apart polaroid onto almost anything.

  2. cool, thanks. i think this would have had to soak a lot longer, as the emulsion was soft but still stuck. maybe just because it was so 'burned' from heat and developer. i'll have to try transfers at some point.

  3. Anonymous1:37 AM

    it's not tranfers that are soaked in water, it's emulsion lifts. You need to use boiling water and it only takes about a minute.

  4. I love your blog so much!

  5. so very cool.

    i love the geometric pattern in this photo.

    a while back, i found a colorpack II in amazing condition at a thrift store. just cleaned it up yesterday and ordering film today. hopefully will post some photos soon.

    found your blog by googling "colorpack II tips" and i found many in your blog on the different types of film - so, thank you!


  6. glad i could help! and you have a totally sci-fi job... i imagine swishing electronic doors and a soft woman's voice playing through the halls explaining the company's purpose and goals. "welcome to genprime. at genprime, we build a better you."


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  8. ooo, kind of eerie!
    like the movies, "the island," or "minority report."

    at least that's how i imagine the woman's voice.

    anyway, no, we don't do anything futuristic like that, (and we're not big or corporate, thank god) but we DO do (doo doo, *snicker) some pretty cool stuff. rapid microbial detection, to be specific.

    good taste in music, i see. if you like the squirrel nut zippers, you MUST check out nick jaina: