• April 23, 2024
Polaroid 104 Land Camera with flash attached

Polaroid – Back in the 1960s…

Imagine you are living in the 1960s and you want to take a photo.  As you know, you are going to take a few photos, put the film in the mail or drop it off at your local photo lab and wait. Suppose, you don’t want to wait for the film to be sent out and developed… So, you pull out your new Polaroid Land Camera with Instant Picture Development.


This is one of my more favorite cameras to operate. The camera has a film pack inside. This film pack also includes the developing solution in little pockets. When you pull out the film and print sandwich the chemicals develop the print. Polaroid stopped making film and went under a few years ago. However, FujiFilm still makes the FP-100c color film packet for this camera, which you can buy on Amazon. Each photo is about 90¢. To take a photo, there are 4-ish steps…


Open the camera and find something to take a photo of…

Polaroid Land Camera Open

When you look through the viewfinder, you will see these little arrows and diamonds to tell you where the edges of the picture will be. Move the two levers to set the arrow to the approximate distance of the item. The levers are right where your index fingers will be, good product design!



Polaroid Land Camer Viewfinder Image

Adjust your scene.  Click the shutter button. The internal battery and electronic shutter will attempt to correct for sunlight. If not, there is a manual aperture adjustment on the lens.

Now, the fun part. There is this little white tab on the right of the camera, in front of a small trap door. Pull the tab. Slow, smooth, with force. Don’t Yank On It.

Polaroid Land Camera Pull Tab

Polaroid Land Camera Film Tab

This smaller tab will cause the door to open and another larger tab will come out from the door. In a single, smooth motion, pull out the larger tab. The big tab is the one that applies the chemicals to your photo and moves out the print. It is attached to the paper that will drag out the negative and the print.


Polaroid Land Camera - Film Out

Now, you wait.  There is instructions printed on the tab (see the words in red) that tell you wait a few minutes for the print to develop. You will adjust the time to wait based on the temperature… The biggest mistake is not waiting long enough… Then peel off the print from the paper and chemicals.  Discard the chemical covered negative.









Don’t touch the print for a few minutes. It needs to dry.

DONE! Instant photo.

The thing that I like the most is the color. These photos tend to be very saturated. Deep blacks with minimal detail in the shadow and vibrant colors that almost pop off the page.  They always have a clean look that captures the colors almost perfectly (something that digital has difficulty doing). The photos are shiny… high gloss.

Polaroid FujiFILM
FujiFILM print from a Polaroid Land Camera. Scanned with Epson V500 (dust included).