Toronto. In its October 30th, 1950 advertisement in LIFE magazine, Polaroid touted its camera as “The World’s Most Exciting” and “this year’s most wanted [Christmas] gift“. While this was typical marketing fluff, Polaroid was right. In a world used to waiting days or weeks for picture results, the picture in a minute camera was truly remarkable.
Sadly, the cost of the film and one-off print were far too costly for most casual users, content to take a few shots each holiday and vacation and wait patiently for the results. Many of the early buyers used the famous Polaroids for a roll or two then quietly placed their costly purchases on a back shelf to be forgotten.
I have had such cameras donated to me gratis by friends, parents, uncles etc. Each camera like new, and some more recent donations after sitting on a shelf for a decade or more still had usable colour film and batteries – with a little touch of photoshop… Of course serious professionals used Polaroid materials to check framing, setting exposure, lighting, etc or for x-rays, astronomy and other important situations. Use the search word “polaroid” in the upper right search box for other Polaroid Posts on this site.
Thanks to George Dunbar for sourcing this LIFE Ad from over a half century ago!