Remember when you were a kid, and someone in your family had a polaroid camera? My grandad had one and I remember being fascinated by the instant photos it spat out. We used to fight over who got to pull the photo out of the camera, and spent long hours debating whether waving the image back and forth helped the image come through faster or better. I was deeply saddened last year to hear that Polaroid will no longer be making instant film, even though I hadn’t held one in my hands for a decade or two.

If you still think back to those old Polaroids with nostalgic affection like I do, you’re going to love Poladroid! It’s the most fun I’ve had with photos since I discovered Flickr.

You take an ordinary photo like this:

Could I be any cuter?

… and you drag-and-drop it into the little Poladroid widget that looks just like an old polaroid camera and sits pleasantly on top of whatever you’re working on, waiting to be of service. (You have to download the applet to your computer, but trust me, it’s totally worth it!!) When you drop your photo in, the Poladroid makes this satisfying old-skool click and whir, and then it spits out your digital polaroid. At first, it looks like a big sepia blur but as the image slowly resolves — just like a real polaroid — you can grab and shake your polaroid with your mouse. Too cute by half! And in the end, you get this:

34:365 Poladroid Lucas

Just the faintest tint of sepia, and how great are the textures? You can play with the settings to give it a jaunty angle, or to give it retro-looking scratches. There’s a wonderful gallery of Poladroid photos on Flickr, if you need some inspiration. Great fun!


Danielle Donders is the author of the popular blog Postcards from the Mothership, where a copy of this column appears today. She will, henceforth, grace us with her take on how technology impacts the parenting (and motherhood) process every second Wednesday in this space, starting March 25.

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