After reading Conway's books This I Know and Instant Love , I hopped online and found myself a crusty old SX-70 Polaroid camera and some film from The Impossible Project. I haven't looked back since.
Why Polaroid? Aside from the dreamy quality, I find myself drawn to the tangibility. There are myriad benefits to digital photography, but at the end of the day I like holding something in my hand. I also like how shooting instant film forces me to slow down. There are only 8 exposures in a pack, and that shit isn't cheap. Unlike the unlimited (by comparison) range of a digital camera, where I can blast off like a machine gun and fix the mistakes with editing software, instant demands that I ground myself in the moment fully and really think about what I want to shoot. What do I see? Why is it special? How do I want to frame it? After several months (and more wasted film than I want to admit), I am still getting used to this. But I'm beginning to discover that less is more. That I need to be patient, to wait for the shots that demand to be taken. And--much like in life--to forgive myself for, and learn from, the mistakes.