This Christmas, we were blessed to get the gift we’ve been angling for since last quarter of 2014. For the longest time, we have been looking with deep longing to the line of Fuji Instax cameras usually displayed on the camera shop right beside the hubby’s favorite hubby shop.
The SOP was also spot on — we dawdle, shuffle our feet and look with a mixture of longing and hesitation on the neat row of cameras looking so delicious in their candy colors all neatly lined up on the store window. The cameras, usually in varying design and character partnerships would beckon like they were puppies waiting for a new owner to get them. Finally, the Hubby took the hint and before the year was over — we came out the exact shop, clutching our new Instax Mini 8 in Black, a pack of 10-films preloaded in the camera cartridge while another pack rests happily inside our bag.
Like a kid on Christmas eve, we cannot let go of our shiny new toy. It was black, a bit clunky (because it was bigger than our usual camera) and oh, it was just so cute. The camera fit nicely as we try to angle a shot. Soon, we would hear the familiar whirrrr of the camera, followed by the sight of the polaroid being pushed out of the device. Like a kid, we watch in glee and anticipation as the image on film develops, first a blank canvass, then a faint image then finally, a full canvass popping in color.
Our Instax Mini 8 was easy to use. A quick scan on the instruction sheet and we were ready to go. Used to years and years of looking into a big screen for digital cameras, the first few times of looking through the tiny peephole was awkward but fun. Installing and replacing the film cartridge was easy.
Our friends was both amused and amazed when we pulled out our new toy from our bag. Used to the mindless, effortless cam-whoring we usually do, they joked about “saving the shots”, “not wasting the film” but wondered as we look on our image coming up slowly from what used to be a blank canvas.
A good friend said, “…this takes me back to my grade school days, where I used to stare at the large Polaroid camera my uncle used to have.” And we all nodded in agreement as we looked on our developing images, appearing like magic on the paper we are holding.
Another asked, “how would you upload it online?” Of course, the answer was simple. We took photos of the films we wanted and post it.
Maybe, it’s the same reason why we fell in love with our new toy. In a world where everything was fast and oftentimes, impersonal, where you can waste multiple shots on your face and post it in social media for the whole world to endure — the feeling of waiting for a shot to develop; of choosing when and where to shoot; of actually taking an effort for a particular shot — is already a foreign concept. Picture taking before used to be special, used to be means to capture a moment. Taking a picture now? It turned into what people do when they are bored and they want to subtly humble-brag.
Maybe we were hankering for the “old days.” Maybe our Instax (whom we named InstaxMigi — yes, we name things)is our bridge to what used to be.
We loved how upon seeing InstaxMigi, conversations with friends would turn into forays into nostalgia, forays into conversations involving “way back when…” or the “back in the day.” We loved that.
We are saving for the Instax Wide, which we saw on the Fuji website and immediately loved. We can do the whole “shuffling-looking with longing” again with the hubby or we can get it ourselves. For now, us and InstaxMigi will be going on a lot of adventures. It only takes us, good company, and a tall stacks of Instax film cartridges and we are set.
My Instax was bought at the Fotomax Enterprise Glorietta, Makati branch.
Prices start at PHP3,500-onwards
Film cartridges retail for PHP500 and up.