Sometime in 1976 I got the word that the in-house packaging guys had come up with some new concepts for the boxes that had been developed after some recent crash-tests. So it was back to the drawing board, the typesetter, darkroom, light table and Cromalin to come up with kindred designs such as the one shown above, and two dummies, shown directly below. Click on images below for enlargements.
Click on image to enlarge. These are the packages for a whole new line of cameras that made their appearance in 1976 called Pronto! The marketing was a repeat of what Stan Calderwood had done with the less expensive one-piece plastic Colorpacks that sold for a lot less than the folding Color Packs. Pronto!s were a down-market molded plastic version of the already successful SX-70, but with a name that could be remembered throughout the world. The product identity design still says SX-70 but with a twist. As an inexpensive product that would probably be stacked in large outlets, I strove for a design that would create a strong and unique image.
By this time I had invested in precise typesetting equipment made by Berthold (with instructions in German, a language I could not read without the aid of a dictionary). The output from a glass disk was so sharp that a character could be enlarged up to a meter or more without soft edges. To enhance this capability I installed a Dupont Cromalin proofing system that allowed me to make perfect dummies of items such as the Pronto! kit shown here. This photo was made from the dummy shown below that, once approved by Polaroid, could be used for sales promotional collateral material allowing much more lead time than the conventional method of waiting for press proofs and shooting them.
Click on image to enlarge. This is the dummy made from Cromalin proofs produced from extremely sharp film positives that I had assembled on a light table in the way negatives are stripped up to make offset plates. I had also used 3M Color-Keys but they could not be used for dummy construction, nor could they approximate the real thing when photographed. The dummy is sitting on top of a conventional ready-for-camera mechanical from which the box printer made his plates.
The Polaroid OneStep camera
The design plot thickens as Polaroid product engineers crank out
more and more camera models to hit all the price points in the
photographic market. Someone decided that the face plate of the camera
should carry the Polaroid color stripes because the ad brass decided to
do their own corporate design in-house and the color stripes would be
part of the identity program. I was not invited to contribute to this
very significant overhaul. Since the product used the same film as the
SX-70 I kept that mark on the box. Then I found out that Sales didn't
want it (for whatever reason) and I came up with this version, below. It
got shot down as well. Click on the image for an enlargement.
This, below, is my final and accepted prototype. You can see sell copy
beginning to appear on the top of the box. It was becoming obvious that
my influence had waned considerably and there was no Stan Calderwood to
call off the in-house attack dogs. (Just by itself, the political
intrigue at Polaroid in 1977 would take pages to describe and we won't
go there.) Click on image for enlargement.