polaroid transfers using spectra af

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i've recently purchased a spectra af polaroid. the quality of the photos is excellent but i'm looking to push its artistic capabilities or innovative possibilities. i'm also looking to make transfers but know very little about the process using this type of film. is there any major distinction between spectra film and other polaroid film? any suggestions or info would be very much appreciated. thanks, christopher

-- christopher james (basis 465@aol.com), June 27, 1999


Polaroid spectra is an integral film (not a peel-apart) thus cannot be used to create image and emulsion transfers. It might work like polaroid sx70 time zero film that you can manipulate the emulsion before it sets hard, but I don't think so. Tina Martin

-- Tina Martin (timarti@hotmail.com), June 27, 1999.

No way. This kind of film can4t be used for transfer. Check at "polaroid transfers" in alltheweb.com

-- jose maldonado (josemaldonados@infosel.net.mx), August 02, 2000.

I have been doing polaroid manipulation with the spectra camera for years. It is not a "transfer process" that you hear so much about, but I think in some respects is immanently more creative. It is easy to do, but complicated to explain. You take your pictures live, or take pictures of pre-existing pictures using the polaroid copy stand. Once they are dry and fully exposed you slice them with an exacto knife pulling them apart and discarding all materials except for the mylar with the image and emulsion on it. Then place the mylar face down on a piece of glass and run under warm water (wear surgical gloves as the emulsion is toxic) you then can remove the emulsion in layers either with you fingers, a toothbrush, or any slightly abrasive object. You can do this as carefully or messily as you would like. The harder you rub the more emulsion and layers of colour you will remove. For instance you may choose to keep only a tiny portion of your original photo, removing all the rest of the emulsion leaving you with clear mylar. Or you may choose to keep some areas highly colour saturated and other areas fading out to sepia. The final layer is sepia toned. Hang to dry or lay flat on paper towel. Once you have a few of these you can layer them, making a photo collage. You can layer the images over various backgrounds that will change the colours etc. and add depth to your collage. You then reshoot the layered images using the polaroid copystand. You now have a polaroid image of your art work. Take this to a copy shop (or do it at home) and have colour copies made onto heat transfer paper. The result will be "backwards" although some copy shops can adjust this for an extra fee. You can then heat transfer your art work onto watercolour paper, clothing, wood or glass.

Hope this makes sense and is of some help, it is an immensely rewarding process and one that I have seen few people doing. The polaroid website doesn't even have instructions on it.

-- Susan McDonic (pookadook2@yahoo.com), February 28, 2003.

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