Back in the days of film, exposing film, especially color transparency, was an art in itself.
While some photographers, like Ansel Adams used them as a medium to make art, for others Polaroids were just a means to an end.
We would set up the lights, consult various light meters and then start shooting Polaroids.
Once we examined the instant (more or less) images and interpreted them, film was exposed.
With some experience and a little luck, the Polaroid was an accurate guide to the finished color transparency.
Polaroid was shot in various formats; 4×5, on the backs of 6×6 and 6×7 cameras or with the magic Marty Forscher/NPC back on your 35mm camera.
Another popular item was the Polaroid 180 and 195 cameras, which shot the pack film but had manual speeds and f stops.
This was popular with 35mm shooters, until the Forscher back arrived.
Polaroid test shot made with a Polaroid back on a Hasselblad at California Angels Spring Training in 1982. Photo by Andy Hayt/Sports Illustrated.
Ray Foli of United Press International (left), Rod Carew of the California Angels and Andy Hayt of Sports Illustrated at Spring Training in Casa Grande, Arizona.Rod is checking out Andy’s Hasselblad. SX-70 by Tom Story
California Angels Fred Lynn, Don Baylor, Reggie Jackson and Rod Carew as posed by Andy Hayt. SX-70 by Tom Story
Fred Lynn, Don Baylor, Reggie Jackson and Rod Carew as photographed by Andy Hayt. The light source was one Norman 200B bounced out of an umbrella for fill and the sun as the main light.
Photo by Andy Hayt/Sports Illustrated
After Andy photographed the four players, he was ready for a Reggie Jackson. We had taped up a red seamless background to a chain link fence and tested it with his Forscher back on a Nikon, probably an F2.
The back used a slab of fiber optic to transfer the image from the film plane and contact print it on the Polaroid pack film. A strip of nylon web was used as a marker so that the Polaroid could be pulled slightly out and allowing for another shot to be recorded on the same sheet of material. Photo by Andy Hayt/Sports Illustrated.
This is the final shot that was used on the cover. Again the light source was a single Norman 200B bounced out of an umbrella as a fill light with the sun as the main light.
Photo by Andy Hayt/Sports Illustrated.