Today, we’re featuring some beautiful Polaroids from photographer Andreea Andrei. Andreea was also awesome enough to answer a few questions for us about her experience with film photography and shooting Polaroid cameras. Scroll on through to see Andreea’s images and read our interview together!
A little bit about Andreea:
My name is Andreea Andrei (26), and I’m a visual artist based in London, United Kingdom. I studied film directing in Bucharest, Romania for 2 years. Then, I took a break and worked in television in Bucharest. After that, I moved to London to finish my studies in film making and photography. Last year in 2016, I received a scholarship by Lewis Bush to attend Ed Thompson’s documentary photography class at his Punktum School. This year in 2017, I was accepted at NFTS for a short course (directing the short film).
Tell me about your background with instant photography? When did you start shooting? What drew you to the format, and what do you love about it?
I started shooting with my first Polaroid Camera two years ago in November. I was very excited that I finally had my first Polaroid, a 600 Spirit camera. I was drawn to this format since I was a kid experimenting with film cameras. I think the fact that it was instant made me want it. And of course because of Mapplethorpe. His first exhibition was with Polaroids, just like my first exhibit this year in London.
What are your favorite instant cameras, and what camera would you suggest for a beginner?
My favorite one is the Polaroid Close-up 636, because you can use it even for a selfie nowadays. If you have your eye trained for shooting natural light at golden hour, you can make some pretty awesome photographs with the 636. As a beginner, I would try a 600 model. It’s more friendly. You will need to mess up a couple images before you find your way and get interesting Polaroids.
What difficulties might beginners run into when they start shooting Polaroids? Can you give us some tips for working with Polaroids?
I think the common one is light. I was a little bit frustrated at the beginning because I wasn’t sure if the correct amount of light was going through the camera. When you deal with the lighten/darken control on a Polaroid camera, try to watch a few YouTube videos, and then just go out and experiment. Experimenting is one of the best things you can do. You can also use a light meter. Some will disagree, but if you feel comfortable with a light meter, then it will help.
What is the most rewarding part of shooting Polaroids?
The most rewarding part is the Polaroid itself. Because when you shoot with a Polaroid, you’ll never have the same photograph twice. The uniqueness of that, I think, is rewarding.
Analog cameras and films used: Polaroid 600 Spirit, Polaroid 636 close-up | Polaroid Originals Film
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