This is one more Polaroid lessons learned post:
1. Never do an important project with only one Polaroid camera, especially if at the time you do not have internet access - The camera may break or get stuck
2. Always bring with you (or do not throw away, like I did) an empty cartridge and a dark slide - You may need it for testing and resetting
3. If your film packs are not fresh, forget it - Plan in advance, the risk is too high
Last weekend two good friends of mine got married, and I wanted to take some pictures of them and some of the guests as a special project, which was supposed to turn into a special wedding gift for the couple.
Stress and lack of light stories behind, I managed to take some very good pictures of the couple. I will post those in a separate post once I return to Denmark after my vacation. However, I did not manage to get a single decent picture of the guests.
First, I did not have more fresh packs of B&W film. S***! The pictures did not have any contrast, and had development path marks (i.e., vertical stripes) , which I hate so much -especially when I am not trying to get artistic!-.
Secondly (and finally), when I immediately changed the pack, the mirror of my SX-70 got stuck. The first image had a weird black line at the bottom. Then the mirror got stuck up, meaning I could only see "black" through the viewfinder. Another symptom was that the camera did not close properly, as you can see below.
I have seen many Polaroid problems before, but never this one, so I thought the camera had broken down. Without internet connection on my phone and as the lighting conditions started being poor, I stopped trying for the day. Besides, I had thrown away the older empty pack, because our table started looking quite messy!
Once at home, after googling the problem a bit, and being already ready to perform an open heart surgery on my camera, I learned that this is quite a typical problem that has an easy fix. I share here the links to the pages that helped me so much, in case you want to know more about it:
Basically, after 5 min of troubleshooting (meaning, I removed the pack, put a empty one, and tried shutting a bit), my camera was up and running again. Although unfortunately, the magical and beautiful wedding moment has long passed. Oh, Polaroid life! ;)