Alternative Uses for Instant Film Prints


Most people are familiar with instant film as a means to instantly capture fun and tangible photos with a vintage look to them. But did you ever brainstorm other ways to make good use of the tiny prints? Take a look at these three fresh ways to use them.


 If you're a bookworm, then bookmarks are your friend. With an instant film camera you can create dozens of customized bookmarks. Fujifilm Instax Film creates small prints that can easily get lost, but keeping those tiny snapshots nestled between the pages of a good book is a creative way to store them. Also, using a print of your new puppy is a great way to show it off to acquaintences when you're relaxing in a cafe.

As an added advantage, your instant film prints won't bend as easily as a regular paper bookmark, and won't get soaked on a rainy day.

Please note that larger books may require use of a 20x24 Polaroid camera :)

Film Emulsion Artwork

Image by Nirazilla

An emulsion transfer is what you get when you place the exposed film in warm water until the actual picture seperates from the back. After that, you simply put the photo (or emulsion) onto almost anything. While not all instant film can do this, emulsion transfers can create some very artistic and eccentric work.

To create an emulsion, trim off the white borders of your completely dry, exposed film. Then place it face up in a pot of water, and cook it until the emulsion lifts off on its own. Carefully remove it from the back using tongs, and place it onto an acetate sheet. Using the glue from the back of the film, try to paste the emulsion down onto the sheet. That's the process in a nutshell, but there are sources online that explain the process in more depth.

The results can be really amazing and interesting, depending on what you do with them. For more, Jim Miotke offers an online course on the subject.

Business Cards


If you want to leave an impression on a person whom you've just met, this is a unique way to do it. A couple of months ago at a trade show, I met lots of new people and had the Fujifilm Instax Mini 7s with me. Everyone was curious about it and wanted their picture taken with it. Eventually, I had the idea to shoot the person's photo and use sticky pads on the back of it to paste my business card. This way, the people never lost my contact info and would immediately remember me when they looked at the photo, because my card was on the back.

If there is a way to make your business card stand out from the sea of cards that get stored in pockets at each trade show, this is it.

How do you use your instant film prints? Do you just let them sit there and gather dust? Let us know in the comments below.