Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Polaroid Giveaway as Part of SewMamaSew's May Blog Giveaway

Welcome to a great giveaway! When I signed up to do this I was pregnant, due June 7th. Well, last night, in one hour from start to finish we welcomed our second daughter. Everyone is doing well at home and I am going to make this post as short as possible.

I am giving away a choice between two prizes. Each package is show below, and each consists of an original Polaroid 669, Polaroid transfer, Polaroid emulsion lift, and a bamboo pendant on ball chain featuring a Polaroid image. All items are made by me and have a value of $125. You can chose between nostalgic images or nudes. To be eligible to win, please visit my Etsy shop, tiffanyteske.etsy.com, select your favorite image, then leave a comment in this post below. I will have a drawing to determine the winner. If you would like extra chances in the drawing and you like my blog, you can become a follower or subscriber. If you are Etsy member you can also favorite my shop for another chance to win. Please make note of which of these things you did in the comment on my blog. You have until June 1st to post your comments.

To see what other things are being given away as part of this blog giveaway check out the list at the SewMamaSew Blog.


NY Times Looking for Polaroids...


Today I found a blog that I think I am going to be checking out everyday. It is a NY Times blog that is dedicated to photography. It is called The Lens. And it has a lot of great work by documentary photographers on it. I just happened to stumble upon this blog by way of another blog, and saw that yesterday they wrote a post on needing Polaroids for a story they are doing on the supposed end of, and now possible rebirth of Polaroid. I have submitted three images and hope to submit a few more. If you are interested, check out this link...

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Caring For and Displaying Your Polaroids - Part One - Caring For and Storing Your Polaroids Including What NOT To Do...


As a photographer who spends the majority of my time shooting with or reworking images with Polaroid film, I am often asked about the best ways to care for and display Polaroid based images. The questions come from both other artists and photographers, as well as people who purchase my work or the work of others. In this three part series I will present how to care for and store your Polaroids, including what NOT to do; 10 ways to decoratively display Polaroids including at least one how-to craft; and give you some additional good ideas on that make use of Polaroids. We will start with caring for and storing your Polaroids and what NOT to do...


To determine the best way to handle your Polaroids, you need to think about how long you might really want to keep an original image. You should consider whether you want to put these babies away in an effort to better preserve them or whether you would like to display them so you can view and enjoy them.


Polaroids are not archival. This means they will not last forever. Polaroid images were designed for instant gratification, to record a moment in a moment but not necessarily for that moment to live on in a museum. Some Polaroids yellow, fade, or become brittle, but these films have been around long enough for us to know that not all images do this. There are some images that you may want to handle with surgical gloves and others that you carelessly throw into a pile. Read on for my tips on dealing with either scenario.


SO YOU WANNA KEEP IT FOREVER...
Well, forever is a long time. And depending on what you read, this is both impossible and possible. Let's say FOREVER is your lifetime. According to Polaroid.com, the American National Standards Institute says that Polaroid films do not fade any faster than any other photographic medium, as long as they are properly stored. They say it takes more than 100 years for them to fade if stored in an archival quality album. Dark storage is recommended by Polaroid to prevent fading, and they claim their color dyes are very stable under these conditions. They do admit that yellowing can occur in white and light areas of a print, when stored in the dark. Flat storage is the best method, as prints on their side can yellow more than those that are flat. Let an images dry for several weeks before storing them, then put them in a box that provides circulation, like a paper storage box. If your prints do yellow, you can set them in daylight or under fluorescent light for a few hours to a few days to correct the problem. The protective polyester outer layer of a Polaroid can be cleaned (for more on cleaning you can read this article from Polaroidmanipulation.com).


BUT I WANT TO LOOK AT THESE IMAGES EVERYDAY AND HAVE THEM LAST FOREVER...
If you want to display your Polaroids AND have them last FOREVER, you are frankly, out of luck. No photograph that is out in the elements of air, light, moisture, etc, will last forever without fading, discoloring, or changing in some way. The good news is that there are ways to minimize the impact of the elements by taking special care. When framing an image that you want to view for a long time, use metal frames with archival mats. Wood frames are acidic and will eventually damage the contents of the frame. An archival mat will protect you work from sticking to the glass of a frame. You need to select either a UV glass or Plexiglas to protect the image in the frame. We will get into matting and framing in more detail in the "Ten Ways to Display Your Polaroids" post.


I WANT TO SEE MY IMAGES, I DON'T CARE IF THEY LAST FOREVER...
This attitude may be the best one to have when it comes to enjoying your Polaroids. Obviously you will probably still want to handle your Polaroids by touching the white borders rather than the surface, keep your images out of the sun or strong direct light, and display them in ways that don't damage the surface like say a push pin might. However, if you are willing to use common sense while allowing your images see the light of day, you will have many more options to chose from when reading the "Ten Ways to Display Your Polaroids" post.


So there is care and storage of Polaroids in a nutshell. On a personal note, I don't handle my originals with gloves. I like the quirky aspects of Polaroid that can't be controlled. Staining, fading, yellowing, scratching, blooming, missing corners... they are all beautiful to me. Much like the mystery that is present when making a Polaroid, that feeling of not knowing what the final image will look like, I enjoy the mystery of not knowing how my images might change over time. Nothing lasts forever, and I embrace that.


OH, ONE LAST, VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ON WHO OWNS THE IMAGE...
Some of you may have noticed that I forgot to mention that you can archive you Polaroids digitally. Yes, of course you can, IF YOU SHOT THE IMAGES. In this case, you own the copyright and can do whatever you want. Making digital copies of your originals via scanner is a great idea. If the original is ever lost, destroyed, or sold, you will still have the image. And scanning your originals will allow you to use them in other ways, such as by making limited edition prints to sell, or altering the images in mixed media work. HOWEVER, if you have purchased your Polaroid from the photographer, and you did not make the image, YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO MAKE DIGITAL COPIES OF IT. This is copyright infringement and the laws vary according to location. Whether you buy and original or a print you are buying THAT original or print, not the rights to reproduce it. Artists and photographers charge usage fees for the right to use and reproduce their work, and these fees usually come with contracts that state how the image can be used. I had someone ask me if they could ask the photographer for permission to scan the images, for their own personal use, meaning they would make one print for themselves if the original was damaged. Sure, ask away, but even if you don't want to sell the images, most photographers would be leary to give you permission to scan their work and reproduce it. It is a slippery slope. Scanning and printing the images that belong to someone else without their permission or without paying fees is stealing. You can try to get away with it, but it is dishonest, and it cheats artists, most of whom honestly don't make a lot of money from what they do.



Lecture over. Please return in a few days for Part Two...

All images by Tiffany Teske

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Ok, So I Realized I am a Little Sad...


... when I read it in black and white, but I still think someone will come forward and keep on making Polaroid film. After all, PolaPremium is. But, I did have to pause for a minute when my Dad, who was visiting from the states, handed me my order from Calumet and it included this announcement... I AM going to miss the lovely little blue and orange boxes...

Friday, May 15, 2009

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Iris #2


With the birth of my second child right around the corner, I am having a nice time revisiting pregnancy images I have made in the past. This was my friend Chantal's second pregnancy.
Image by Tiffany Teske

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Chateau Lake Louise - Alberta


Kinda makes you wonder what they talk about all day... Humorous, yet at the same time, animals hanging on walls always make me sad...
Image by Tiffany Teske

Saturday, May 9, 2009

More 2009 'Roid Week Images


Man, that was fast, it is already over for 2009... NOOOOOOOOOO! I did make images each day, but just got home from being away, so have yet to scan most of them. I was able to scan this mini series today. I love to shoot little series with Polaroid. 3-5 images work well. This is my daughter, just being free.




All Images Copyright Tiffany Teske

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Feature on POE Blog (Photographers of Etsy) - My Internship with Wegman

I have been on vacation with my family for so long (no complaints!) that I am getting behind on my posts. I would be posting each night but my darn hotel internet is a bit unreliable, especially when it comes to uploading images. C'est la vie! Technology is great when it works...




I want to thank Ann Wilkinson for interviewing me about an internship I completed in University with William Wegman for the Photographer's of Etsy blog. You can check it out here. It was a fun trip down memory lane. I really haven't thought about it much in recent years. It is only when people have read my CV and ask me about it that I remember it. I was able to find these photographs, which now seem like they were taken AGES ago. I have changed a lot in going on 10 years... Ann's article was pretty accurate (although Wegman's "cabin" is more like a mansion) which I appreciate and expected from Ann. As the article states, if you are interested in interning for another photographer, just be brave and ask. It worked for me...

Monday, May 4, 2009

Once Again, It Is Time for Polaroid Week...


Paper Lantern by Tiffany Teske
Polaroid Spectra

...or 'Roid Week 2009, as it is affectionately known. Time to make a Polaroid a day for five days. I pretty much do this anyway, but it is fun to make it official and to play with others. Here is the Flickr group you can join so that you can upload your work for others to view and you can check out the work of others... Have fun and be creative!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Hello from Olympia, Washington!

We are at our friend's home in Olympia, enjoying the spring warmth and their generous hospitality. We only have two days to see a ton of stuff, so I will do my best to post some updates but it may have to wait until we reach Kelowna next week. I have been experimenting with a new film in my Polaroid back of my Holga... wish I had a scanner so I could post them. More soon...