How to make great photos with the I-1

As with any camera, the more you practice with the I-1, the better your photos will be. The following tips are designed to help you get great results, no matter what the conditions. To sum up the most important points:

  • Make sure your light source is behind you when you shoot
  • Keep the ring flash on in all conditions - the more light in your shot, the sharper it will be
  • Remember the lighten/darken switch - use it to brighten indoor shots or darken sunny outdoor shots
  • Press the shutter button halfway in to focus on your subject before you take a photo
  • The camera’s viewfinder sits a little above the lens - remember to allow for this when composing a photo at close distances, so your subject remains in the center

 How to get the best exposure

Light conditions are everything when you’re taking an instant photo. We recommend that you always keep your light source behind you when you shoot, whether that’s the sun or an indoor lamp. Also always make sure you use the ring flash - it provides the best possible lighting by adapting to the ambient light already in the scene. You can also use the I-1’s lighten/darken switch to add or remove brightness. When shooting in dull outdoor light, or shooting anywhere at night, move the switch up to the lighten position. Or when shooting in very bright conditions, move it down to the darken position.

FLASH                                          NO FLASH

               

How to line up your shot

The I-1 uses a mechanical pop-up viewfinder with reflective silver markings that help you to align the camera correctly for a well-composed shot. The viewfinder is most accurate when you hold it 4 – 5cm away from your eye. To use the alignment markings, follow these steps:

  • Close one eye and hold your camera out in front of you, at first about 20cm away from your face.
  • Train your eye on the silver dot on the viewfinder’s rear lens. Move the camera until the silver dot is in the center of the circle on the front lens.
  • Move the camera towards you until the viewfinder is 4–5 cm away from your eye. The dot will become blurry but should still be visible inside the circle. You’ll see that the view through the viewfinder has become sharp.
  • Remember that the viewfinder sits above the camera’s lens, so at very close distances (1.2 meters or less), you will need to aim higher than what you see in the viewfinder to compose your shot correctly.

Note: See the diagram below.

REAR LENS DOT IN THE CENTER 

               

 

REAR LENS DOT NOT CENTERED 

        

 

How to make photos indoors

Instant film loves light - more than you might expect. Always use the flash when shooting indoors, even when you don’t think you need it. If the light indoors is dull, then move the lighten/darken switch up to the lighten position to brighten the scene. You can also try shooting near a window, with the window on one side of your subject - keep the flash on and make sure your camera is not facing the window directly when you take the photo, otherwise your shot will be overexposed.


FLASH, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH ON LIGHTEN  

               

NO FLASH, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH ON DARKEN

  

 How to make photos outdoors

Natural light is your best friend when it comes to instant photography. When shooting in bright, direct sunlight you may not need the power of the ring flash, but we recommend you keep it on in all situations just in case. Make sure that the sun is always behind you when you shoot. If your environment is very bright, you can try moving the lighten/darken switch down to the ‘darken’ position to let less light into the shot and ensure it isn’t blown out.

 

LIGHT BEHIND THE CAMERA, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH IN MIDDLE 

      

 

LIGHT IN FRONT OF THE CAMERA, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH IN MIDDLE

         

 

       

NO FLASH, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH IN MIDDLE 

How to make photos at night

Getting a good photo at night means paying attention to the light already in the scene. You will need different settings whether you’re shooting at a party or trying to capture streetlight, for example. When shooting at a party (or in any indoor nighttime environment), you should always use the flash. Remember that the flash range ends after about 5-6 feet, so for best results make sure you’re within that distance when you shoot. The flash is more effective when shooting against a light colored background - you can also try moving the I-1’s lighten/darken switch up to get a brighter shot. When shooting landscapes at night, we recommend using a tripod or putting the camera on a steady surface.

FLASH                                               NO FLASH

           

 

                                                         

 

 How to make great portraits

The I-1’s advanced ring flash is uniquely engineered to provide the perfect light for portraits. Always use the ring flash for your portrait shots, unless shooting in bright, direct sunlight. It’s best to be approximately 50-80cm away from your subject for a well-focused portrait shot. When composing your photo, press the shutter button halfway in to focus on your subject before pressing it all the way in to take the photo.

FLASH                                                 NO FLASH

                                                          

 

How to shoot in different temperatures

Temperature affects how the film works. Keep it stored cold in the fridge (stacked flat), but never freeze it. Ideally you should let it adjust to room temperature before you use it. That’s around 13-28C (55-82F). When it’s cold out, keep your photos warm in a pocket close to your body while they develop. Or if it’s a hot day, make sure they stay cool. When photos develop in cold conditions, they appear more blue, while in warm conditions they appear more pink. Regulating for temperature helps to counteract this, but many instant photographers like to experiment with different temperatures to enhance the effect.

FLASH, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH IN MIDDLE, SHIELDED IN A POCKET

 NO FLASH, LIGHTEN/DARKEN SWITCH ON LIGHTEN, LEFT IN THE LIGHT

 

NO FLASH, SHIELDED IN POCKET   FLASH, LEFT IN THE LIGHT 

      

 

How to handle the photo while it develops

Your instant photos will appear bluish grey at first. They’re most sensitive during this time, so don’t bend or shake them, and be sure to shield them from the light. They are shielded from the beginning when they are ejected underneath the I-1’s frog tongue. Continue shielding them by placing them face down as they develop, for at least the first 10 minutes. Always handle your instant photos by the frame, as touching the film surface may affect the image. Color changes over a time are an inevitable result of instant photography chemistry, but you can store your photos in a cool, dark place to slow down the process.

How to focus at different distances

The I-1’s shutter button has two positions: press it lightly halfway in to focus, and firmly all the way in to take a photo. You will feel a very subtle click when you reach the halfway position. Practice this a few times while the camera is switched off to get a feel for it.

To achieve the best possible focus at different distances, follow the guidelines in the table below. So for example if you want to take a macro or closeup photograph, you’ll get the best results when you are 0.2 - 0.5 meters away from your subject.

Macro photography: 0.2-0.5m

Portraits: 0.5-0.8m

Group of friends: 0.8-2.0m

Medium range: 2.0-3.5m

Long range/landscape: 3.5-∞m

And remember, the more light on your subject, the sharper your image will be.

The I-1 uses infrared light to work out how far away the subject is. In order for this to work most effectively, your subject should be at the center of your composition while the camera is focusing. If you don’t want your subject to be in the center of your photo, first compose the shot with the subject at the center. Then press the shutter button halfway in to focus. To avoid a blurry photo, make sure you are at least 30cm away from your subject when you take the picture.

 MACRO

  

 

  

 

PORTRAIT

  

 

GROUP PICTURE

  

 

MEDIUM RANGE LANDSCAPE

  

 

 

Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

Powered by Zendesk