digital is dead

Once ubiquitous, the Photo Booth was first introduced to the world in 1925 by inventor Anatol Josepho, a Russian immigrant to New York City, when he unveiled on Broadway what would become an instant sensation and ultimately a cult classic. 

 

Back in the day, photobooths dotted the five and dime stores, bus stations and the American amusement parks from coast to coast, while today digital reproduction photobooth machines are common in dive bars and hotel lobbies; only a handful of their analog photochemical forebears still exist Globally.

In the era of smart phones and snapchat filters, where digital technology touches every aspect of our lives; there is a certain type of magic that extends well beyond retro-chic nostalgia in stepping into a vintage photobooth, and creating something tangible. There's a certain type of magic in waiting several minutes for the old-school machinery to process what was only 20 seconds of posing. Magic in reaching for the strip, just spit out into the catch-tray...still wet, and seeing for the first time the poses and expressions, unedited and unrehearsed. The evidence of crow's-feet and laugh-lines on a face; all signs of the many emotions experienced in a life well lived. Photostrips tell a story. And story-telling is an art. 

I started this analog art project back in 2018 during my travels. While the majority in my industry are creating lucrative online photo subscriptions on popular sites; I'll still be over here churning out one-of-a-kind analog-selfie momentos. Call me a Neo-Luddite, but I rather like the idea of there being a bawdy B&W keepsake, tucked into an envelope in the back of your sock-drawer. A few photostrips are scandalous and others playful; but all of them raw and beautiful and unreservedly "me".