Time Zero: The Instant Art

Polaroid Time Zero Film (expired) on Polaroid SX-70 Land Camera by The Gentleman Amateur

I’ve been contemplating on getting one of Edwin Land’s gorgeous folding SX-70 cameras and did a search on Flickr when I stumbled upon The Gentleman Amateur’s wonderful photostream. I was immediately in awe, what is this Time Zero film? Truthfully my knowledge of the Polaroid films and cameras are severely limited to my simple One Step box type SX-70 & The Impossible Project new films and when saw these, I was obsessed.

I spent the last few days scouring eBay & Googling the Time Zero films & cameras, and found out that other than getting some sweet, unpredictable shots like the ones above, you can also manipulate  the TZ  films and produce something akin to impressionistic paintings. Isn’t that so sweet??

Back to the photos, The Gentleman Amateur had kindly shared with me a few tips on purchasing the right type of TZ films should you be interested in getting one:

  • Get TZ films with expiry dates around 2000s, anything from the 90s or older probably won’t work
  • Artistic TZ films are generally easier to find and much cheaper, but produces much muted tones compared to the former

Thanks so much for the kind tips, you really are a gentleman through and through :)

So be sure to visit The Gentleman Amateur’s photostream and check out his other works, especially his polaroid double exposures, they’re seriously awesome!

Also, if you’re interested in manipulating your TZ films as I’ve mentioned earlier, check out this article by Scott Wittenburg & download this free ebook by Filippo Centenari. Alternatively you can also get this book from the Pola Art website.


Now, I’m off to hunt on eBay again ;)