Beginning at the top is the Polaroid mark I did in 1958, its application to package design and corporate identity, which is the bottom panel just above the date, 1958. Somewhere in the lower right of the photo is the corporate sign POLAROID, identical to the mark above. On the left are package designs for Polaroid Sunglasses, 1962, Polaroid Colorpack and black-and-white filmpacks, package design for a Polaroid Colorpack camera, and to the far left, package design and product identity for Polavision, 1977. At the bottom of the row is a package design and product identity for a Polaroid Square Shooter camera. In the row on the right are package designs and product identity for Polaroid SX-70 cameras and accessories, dating from 1972, and just below is a photo of package design for Polaroid Pronto!
Quotes from an article by John Weich, in Grafik [UK} August 2005 --
"Like Apple today, Polaroid supplemented its superior product with superior branding. . . ." "In 1958 the company decided to hire freelance designer Paul Giambarba with a view to revitalizing the brand. This was the start of a relationship that was to last an amazing twenty-five years—Giambarba changed the face of Polaroid. He was responsible for creating packaging for Polaroid's Colorpacks, its SX-70, Square Shooter and Square Shooter 2 and the OneSteps. Giambarba's first initiative was to transform the logo into an uppercase News Gothic, and his second was to give the company's B&W film shelf distinction by way of black end panels, which were easily discernible in its TV spots (which, of course, were black and white). "The first round of rebranding lent Polaroid some design credibility, but its second, more significant evolution elevated the brand to design icon. . . ." Thank you, John and thank you, Grafik Editor Caroline Roberts.
Grafik is the UK's only magazine dedicated entirely to showcasing the most exciting new graphic design work every month. It's also an essential tool for a designer in search of information and inspiration.
Techland at Time nagazine, Polaroidland, and Vintage Obsession, all on the Web, recently posted about the original Polaroid Model 95A Land Camera and Type 47 film. It was a vast improvement over the old original film which faded, but it required the use of a minature squeegee to save the print. Its speed of 3000 ASA was a remarkable accomplishment allowing its use in low light levels.
My late wife, Ruth, and our newborn daughter, Lily, November 1960
Lily as a toddler, with her grandfather, summer 1962
I took these photos with a Model 95A. All of them are over 50 years old, and except for some very minor scratches along the left edge of the top print, they are in perfect archival condition. This has been accomplished with a minimum of care and storing in the pockets of an off-the-shelf photo album of clear vinyl pages. Polaroid always made it clear to its customers to avoid gluing picture corners to the black pages of what are now considered old-fashioned photo albums.
Please click on the links above to view and read more about this film from Harry McCracken and Chrisopher Bonanaos, two published authors and student Derek Butler.
And, many thanks once again to Jim Coudal.
The film box, above, and the folding camera model box, below, that was the high end of the product price line. The sleeve held both camera and flash attachment. In my opinion, these cameras – all clones of the original Model 100 – took the very best Polaroid instant color photos.
This is the book, below, that I did using only off-the-shelf Polaroid cameras and film. The cover photo is of my son, who was five years old at the time the photo was taken. Peter Wensberg had said one day at lunch that he would spend a million dollars to get customers to take the camera off the shelf in their hall closets and shoot a couple of rolls of film. Remembering those wonderful books in the Kodak libraries available at most camera stores, I proposed doing a similar program for Polaroid. The concept was that they be sold as products, similar to what Eastman Kodak did, and the cost be self-liquidated, if I can remember the buzz word. Wensberg was elated at the results when I brought in the photos, dummy and script. Calderwood was equally enthusiastic. Sounds good, but the euphoria didn't last. Wensberg's assistant, Ted Voss, insisted that the customers would be best served if the book was given away as a premium. I argued against that concept but to no avail. At that point, Stan Calderwood had already decided to leave Polaroid, Wensberg was busy preparing to take over Stan's job, and the entire book project just died on the vine. More's the pity because I sold a trade book edition to Doubleday anticipating some promotional effort by Polaroid which never materialized.
The Branding of Polaroid will continue to deal with design and branding issues and analog photographic images will be displayed on the Analog blog. Instant Summer 2012 photos are now shown on Analog Photography at its Best.
Grant Hamilton's TIME Zero film will be appearing as part of SilverDocs | AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival taking place June 19 and 26th, 2012. There will be two screenings at the festival. Show #1, Tuesday 6/19 4:45 pm Discovery HD Theater 1 Discovery Place Silver Spring, MD 20910 (240) 662-2000 Show #2, Saturday 6/23 7:45 pm AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center 8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (301) 495-6700
TIME ZERO has been selected to be part of Visionfest 2012 at the Tribeca Cinema. at 4 PM on Sunday, 24 June. Tribeca Cinemas, 54 Varick St. Theater TC1 54 Varick Street (at Laight Street, one block below Canal Street) The festival takes place June 20-24.
10 AM on 26 June at the Manhattan Film Festival Venue 2 358 West 44th Street, NYC.
All seating is on a first come, first served basis and you must pick up your tickets at least 15 minutes prior to show time. No late seating will be allowed. General Admission – $12.00
TIME ZERO will be screening as an official selection at the Manhattan Film Festival in New York at 10 AM on 26 June.
Manhattan Film Festival Venue 2
358 West 44th Street
New York, NY
General Admission – $12.00