It’s hard to beat the instant gratification of a Polaroid camera. Click, wirrrrr, click, click, squrrrrr, and done! No waiting to process your RAW files, or use a darkroom.
After some late night eBay browsing I am now the proud owner of a Polaroid Supercolor 635CL, most likely manufactured in the late 80’s.
Condition appears to be excellent and fully working, however I have the small issue of film. Whilst readily available, thanks to The Impossible Project, it certainly isn’t cheap. At £17.99 a cartridge it may seem reasonable, that is until you discover you only get 8 or 10 shots a cartridge, at which point mistakes become very expensive.
Fortunately it’s hard to mess up a shot with the 600 series Polaroids. Most featured a fixed focus plastic lens, with only one element, meaning no focusing to worry about. Provided you are stood more than 4ft away you will get an in focus photo. This differs with special editions such as the 635CL I have here.
The 635CL (close-up lens) allows you to slide a small additional lens element into place with the flick of a switch, allowing you to focus as closely as 2ft, however you will need to remember to remove this extra element when shooting further than 4ft away, otherwise you will end up with an out of focus and expensive waste of film.
In summary, an interesting piece of photographic history from a time when British was best.