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Name Polaroid
Released 1937

Polaroid was the leading company in instant photography for many years, introducing the "Land camera" (named after founder Edwin Land, not because it couldn't be used on sea or air) which took pictures onto self-developing film packaged with built-in development chemicals and print paper. In the original Polaroid cameras, you had to wait one minute after taking the picture and then peel off and discard the film and chemical layer, leaving a completed print. A number of versions of the camera and film were released, both black-and-white and color.

In the 1970s, the popular SX-70 model was released, further automating the picture-development process; now internal mechanisms in the camera exposed the film and print to the proper chemicals at the proper times so that a finished picture could just magically pop out, with no peeling required.

The Polaroid company fell into hard times with the rise of digital photography, and eventually went bankrupt. The new owners of the Polaroid name are now trying to merchandise it with various products and services including mall stores offering digital-photo printing services (including in formats that mimic the old Polaroid prints). Singer Lady Gaga is now the Creative Director of the company.

Despite a song-lyric reference, no version of Polaroid pictures were intended to be shaken in the course of development.

A group called The Impossible Project is now producing film and other supplies for vintage Polaroid cameras, once they stopped being made by Polaroid themselves; Polaroid sells these products now from its official site.


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