The death of the Polaroid instant camera in 2008 was a sad but unremarkable reality at the time, with its rapidly declining sales coinciding with the rise of a product that went on to change the entire world’s relationship with technology: the iPhone.
What is more surprising about Polaroid’s story is just how quickly it came back around again. While the company technically still lives on as an electronics company, a group of Polaroid super fans stepped in as soon as it ceased production of its classic instant camera to buy the last remaining instant film factory in the Netherlands, naming their endeavour the Impossible Project.
Less than a decade later in 2017, amid a wider revival of analogue-based pursuits including vinyl, books and film photography, the project rebranded as Polaroid Originals, and launched the first of its own range of instant cameras.
To mark the new decade, the team behind Polaroid Originals decided to return to the brand’s colourful history, renaming as – you guessed it – Polaroid, unveiling a new look, and a new autofocus instant analogue camera to go along with it.
The colour spectrum has long played a role in Polaroid’s aesthetic as a brand, and became a key inspiration for the new rainbow-coloured visual identity, which has been brought to life by the in-house design team.
The rainbow-focused design is being used across packaging and other touchpoints, while the brand’s new analogue camera, Polaroid Now, will be available in the red, orange, yellow, green and blue colours of the spectrum, along with the classic black and white colourways.
Priced at £119, the point and shoot camera is aimed at photographers of all abilities, and boasts a newly developed autofocus lens system, longer lasting battery life and a stronger flash. A new special edition instant film, Colour Wave, is also being released, and the Colour i-Type Film Black Frame Edition will become a permanent fixture of Polaroid’s product offering.
“In the 70s, Polaroid changed the rules of branding with the introduction of bold, full panel rainbow spectrums across our product lines,” says Polaroid CEO, Oskar Smolokowski. “As this new decade marks a new chapter in the Polaroid story, it’s a moment for us to celebrate that heritage, while keeping our sights set on the future. The new identity for 2020 reflects this, boldly reclaiming the colour spectrum as uniquely Polaroid.”