Name: Ioana Cristina Casapu
Tools of the trade: Polaroid EE100, Fuji Instax Wide 100
Tell us a little (or a lot) about yourself: who are you, where do you live, what inspires you, what made you turn to instant photography and what is your background?
I’m a writer so whatever I’ll put down on paper that makes people laugh or feel gets me going. I take photos, I like silence but I’m a festival crowd lover too. I like the sand and the beach in the early morning when it’s empty, I like running. I like watching strangers and talking to people I never met before for hours. I like boys, singing in the shower and while I don t have a drivers license, I often dream I’m driving so I’d probably really like that too.
It was actually my former fiancé who got me into the Polaroid craze. We live apart on different continents now but even though our love affair did not last forever, the miles of lines we wrote to each other and still do, have changed our outtake on life for the better. When he came home to visit two years ago, he was carrying this ginormous camera shooting Polaroids on FP3000B. I was ecstatic about that camera and I grew fascinated with this old world recollection of instants, so fragile and yet so enduring. The first time I had the peel off film in my own camera, I couldn’t shake that magical feeling, so intimate, of warming up the envelope against my coat to make the solvents act faster and get the brighter colors. Each time I peeled off a Polaroid I thought about how people who truly inspired us changed our lives forever. This is the kind of love that never goes out of style.
Something nice about the place where you live?
Bucharest is a stage of the old and the new, a cracked mirror of lost times hit by a Technicolor ray of light. I think the word that defines most likely this city is nostalgia. Nostalgia of the young for the youth of their forefathers (especially translated in the music, art and party scene), nostalgia for the pastimes and the glamorous vibe of the early 1990s, and late 1970s. We are past-ridden in so many ways, and yet we are so touched with anything that’s new, we embrace the trend like there is no tomorrow. I think it’s a city of contrast, and maybe one of the lost-and-found desks of the continent, where so many foreigners come to revel at yesterday through the eyes of today.
A memory you wish you could have imprinted on film but didn’t?
All the times that I fell in love. I wish there was a way to incapsulate this feeling, similar to drowning, to butterfly wings batter and to sunlight playing in the waves, so precarious and yet, the strongest in the world.
Recommend us an album, a track, a store, a special camera, a film, a motion picture etc.
Mazzy Star/So tonight that I might see is still my favorite album after all these years. It has a touch of old and new, it sounds sandy, windy and nostalgic, just like the vibe of holding a fresh Polaroid in your hand, after a day at the beach.
Say I give you an instant camera with only one paper left inside. It’s the last instant camera in the world. What would you shoot and why?
Clear skyline hitting the edge of the sea. This is how it begins, this is how it ends. We head for the sea to find ourselves, to find peace, to think about death. We make love to our minds, we mourn, we let our souls travel in that great wide open. And that’s the real freedom, when everything else is thin air.