Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Our INSTAX Family

 Our Instax collection has grown and I couldn't be happier. 

I mean, this is no new thing and in no way is this a post telling you to purchase these instax products, but I just want to highlight why I have really fallen in love with the traditional Polaroid and how having instax at home has really brought a realness of taking pictures to the kids.

Last spring I was lucky enough to be gifted a Instax mini printer at a press event. Now this little printer brought instant joy as I was able to send pictures directly from my phone to this tiny box and have it produce a retro print for me. Not only was it perfectly cute and kept as a picture but it was a perfect picture because I was able to choose what was printed rather than risking an average one.
This was a game changer in printing photos for me. I have been quite happy to keep buying the films, even though they are pricey, because the end product is really special.

In the run up to Christmas I decided that I wanted to get the kids a Polaroid camera. They needed something that wasn’t a toy and also something that wouldn’t just sit in a cupboard, so a camera it was and as I had a Polaroid when I was younger it made sense to get them one. It is the instant gratification I love so I knew for them, taking a picture then holding it physically would be really enjoyable.  However the full price of the newest Instax is probably to only be spent when you can guarantee the child is going to use it, after all, they are just that, children and I wasn’t prepared to spend my money on cool tech that wasn’t really required.

So ebay became my best friend again and mid-October I started searching Instax Mini cameras. Now these have not lost their price if you ask me. Plenty of people are selling hardly used ones for £50 and over but I was after a real bargain, and I had no worry that it would have been used. As long as it looked good and was working then I was happy.

It is a classic thing you see when someone was bought one and they didn’t use it, so there are plenty of them available, it is just about looking for the right one. After a week or so of consciously looking I came across a Hello Kitty limited edition camera that, at £10, was a perfect gift for Etta. I mean, really, that is practically getting a camera for free so I knew that one was perfect for what we wanted. Raph's white Instax mini 8 was £28 and had a missing battery cover but you can buy these for a few pounds off ebay too. I was expecting to pay £30 for each but didn’t really want to be spending more than that because it would make it an expensive present that I had no idea that they would like.
In the end the bargain hunting helped out and when the cameras arrived I was really pleased with their condition. After a bit of a clean up (baby wipes and nail varnish remover) they looked new and wrapped in a nice box they became a great present.

Having had them over a month now I wouldn’t say they were over used. We have been able to talk about the importance of not just photographing everything and looking for good things to take pictures of. They got it. They understood they had 10 shots per film and that at the moment we had x amount of films. They were both really good at classing these as precious things and not wanting to waste a shot. That has also led to some really great photos and for them and moments that they can treasure.

I am now filling our photo box with the pictures printed off my printer so I know we have high quality images to keep and for the kids it means that they can take a picture and have ownership over it which seems to mean more to them than I had realised. Digital is easy for me and they can play with a digital camera, but then the photos stay on it and you forget to print them off. This has really opened the children up to understanding (basic) photography and how they themselves can capture little moments and memories.


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