Jarrod Reno – Colorado based Destination Portrait & Wedding Photographer » Portraits and Weddings on Film & Polaroid

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Polapremiums Fade to Black Polaroid Film

Polapremium’s FADE TO BLACK Polaroid Film

I just had to post about this film. I seriously think its the most amazing film ever produced… Why? Because it helped open my eyes to something eternal and meaningful and life changing. Wow, huh? A polaroid film could do that, crazy!

Let me get deep and hopefully put to words what I’m feeling.

I find myself pulling for purpose within art whether it be painting, design, music, or photography. We all do.

What is the purpose? What keeps us from meaningful purpose?

I think our culture has programmed all of us with the goal of puffing up our EGO. Facebook, Myspace, blogs, all this instant “community” where we can easily fabricate ourselves.  “How do I want other people to see me?” Dangerous ground for sure. No? I can write up little biographies and post links to all the places you can find me online. I can list music I love, art I love, what I’m doing at any given moment. I can post things to make sure everyone out there knows I have a handle on things. That I’m doing good things, having fun and being successful. All EGO centric. (Not saying all this online social stuff is bad, ’cause I think its great!)

But, feeding our EGO can easliy end up on the forefront of our mind.

With this comes the natural draw to compare ourselves with other people who may be doing the same thing…. fabricating. This is so detrimental to artists because it can then drive us to loosing the true purpose of art because someone else does it better…whats the point now?

This whole way of thinking just eats you away inside and snowballs… most often we’ll just try harder.  Get some positive feedback (hopefully). Process that positive feedback and doubt the truth of it leading to a little bit of self-doubt.

An artist is made to be creative. If we’re not creating we’re miserable but on the other hand if we’re creating for our EGO then we’ll also be miserable.

The EGO can overpower the true purpose of art and I think we all struggle with it at times. I know I do.

So….The Message. “What is the message of my art.”

I’ve personally lost the Message of my art and haven’t been able to find it for years. Inside I’ve struggled with “What am I even trying to say through my art?” “Do I even have anything to say?” “Is it worth anything?” “What if I never find something to say, or what if I’m lying to myself about what I want to say?” “It seems like everyone else has purpose in there art. What about me? Am I a fake? Am I just wanting to be noticed and talked about?”

This past weekend I took a photo of my daughter. She was leaning up against a window and for just a second looked right at me, she had a very somber look about her. I hit the shutter and the Polaroid popped out and me and Olive sat there and watched it develop. After about 2 minutes it was fully developed and as I sat there looking at it, knowing that this shot because of this special film, will fade to complete black within the next 12 hours. I realized that I had a choice to make.

Do I cut the polaroid open to stop the chemicals so I can share it with other people?

Its a moment from my precious daughters life I’d be able to look back on for the rest of my life?

Or do I let it fade away and be one of two people that saw and experienced this moment captured?

My eyes filled up tears from the overwhelming feeling I got while looking at it and realizing some important things. To me it was the purest photo I’ve ever taken, I feel like everything that should have been captured, was. And honestly by ‘chance.’ She could have blinked or turned away.

I was soooo torn….  It just looked amazingly beautiful in my hands. The darks so dark, the detail so detailed, the light so perfect, her face, her eyes were speaking to my heart and I had no words to describe it. If I stopped the development I’d be able to show people and hopefully pass on something good in that…. if this thing fades to black… will it just be a waste? will I regret it? Tess, my wife wouldn’t even be able to see it.

This film illustrated something amazing to me. My daughters life, as is ours, is fleeting, something I’ve alway known in my head but now fully realized and felt it in my heart. Our moments in life are fleeting. To most of us, we have moments we wish we could re-live. I bet anything that those moments were FULL of LOVE and emotion. I bet anything! Not to put aside moments of sadness/pain because those are just as important in life and as in art!

I captured a true moment with true emotion. Olive was sick that morning, she was somber and that was shown in the photograph. The image made me FEEL. What I realized was…. the POLAROID in itself was not important and is not eternal, but the MOMENT itself was important and eternal.

The point was the moment! Not capturing it for later. But experiencing it while it happend! I felt so grateful!

We need to seriously stop and experience moments.

So, I let the polaroid fade and found so much joy in letting it go knowing that the moment was what was important and its something I’ll always have:) WOW. Though, I did scan it multiple times over the course of its fading and with getting these printed off and mounted in succession I hope for it to have an impact.

Anyways… this post might be slightly scattered and so many little points I’d like to delve into but the point I set out for was that I have now found purpose in my art. LOVE and LIFE, the eternal. Some people might see that as cheesy but its not. Its real and its the most important thing in this world.

Love is my message.

I want to capture feeling that can’t necessarily be seen.

I’m so relieved and inspired now.

What do you guys think? How is your journey through art been? Please comment away!

A Moment Faded Lives On - Polaroid Film from Polapremium

A Moment Faded Lives On - Polaroid Film from Polapremium

Suvarna - Well put Jarrod. I think as photographers it is sometimes easy to be so busy behind the lens that we miss a lot of moments. What a great realization and how fitting to have come from a film (company) that was on the verge of disappearing itself.

Zach Risso - While I agree whole-heartedly with your sentiment, I think the film is an absolutely ludicrous marketing ploy. The ATZ film skirted the line of them just selling bad chemicals, but this is ridiculous.

Back to the original question you posed though, I think the fleeting thing that is life is why I am a photographer. I want to capture things that are only there for a moment; there is an immortality in knowing that my photos will, potentially, be around far longer that I will and that they are able to show people how I saw the world.

jarrod - Ha. Yeah I can see the controversy behind the film and I think there will be only a handful who will buy the stuff, but when you do stop the process by cutting into the film the image stays real well. The contrast with this film is so much like original TimeZero, I’m stoked about that since TimeZero goes for like $40+ on eBay.

Thanks so much for the comments! Means a lot!

Jim Robertson - I am so grateful to have stumbled across your blog and especially this post. I have been wrestling with why I want to create anything at all and it always comes back around to satisfying the ego, which of course can never be satisfied. As far as capturing “moments” I find that I’m more often “in the present moment” when I am shooting. Anyway, I’m in agreement with and am moved by this post.

I’m also aware that Polapremium is creating new ways of selling bad chemicals but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun to use. I look at it as a form of alternative processing. What you make of it is up to the artist within you. I recently tried the ATZ and loved it. The packs I had didn’t seem all that dull. I just ordered some Fade to Black and am looking forward to some creative “moments”.

Thanks Jarrod!

jarrod - Jim! So glad you got something from this! Your comments mean a lot to me. And good perspective with the film in general. Its definitely not for everyone:)

Luis - luv fade to black film, black is so incredible!

bryce - How did I miss this? I feel like a bad friend. This is a beautiful insight into creation of art, which can feel so damn forced and ugly sometimes. I love this.

demon tattoo designs - I came across your site, i think your blog is cool, keep working !

Robert - Very moving. I think the film is intended for exactly what you stated. Capture that fleeting moment…..

jarrod - thanks man. i agree. the film is just for that

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