Friday, November 26, 2010


On suggestion of a reader, I just signed up for Kickstarter, filled out their forms, (very convincingly, I thought) and hit "enter".

Kickstarter is a non-investment funding source for various projects that you can see here.  It is quite interesting, and I believe a great, early idea for "angel" funding without the conventional corporate involvement. Some of the funded Kickstart projects appear to be preselling awards, like a camera strap and clip shown here. Pretty neat product!

Apparently after filling out the form, Kickstarter staff review it and see if it meets certain criteria.  Even though Kickstarter gathers smaller funding pledges it might be enough to move our project forward to a working prototype demonstration that could help show evidence of commercial and artistic viability.

submitted by Bob Crowley on Friday Nov 26, 5:48pm EST



Funding Goal


Project Description

With the news that there are no plans to produce any more Polaroid Type 55 P/N film a small group of dedicated photographers are starting to plan their own instant negative films and processes.
The goal is to enable the supply of a very high quality 4X5 negative material, for artistic purposes, that can easily be field processed, like so-called "instant" film once sold as Polaroid Type 55.
A feasibility study has been conducted, a budget has been developed, and now we are looking for support, distribution, and commitments for a production effort with ship to stock within 8 months of funding.

Project Rewards

Photographers who still have one or more of the millions of Speed Graphics, and other 4X5 cameras, will have available a new, reasonably priced super high quality, high resolution instant monochrome film that is much sharper and more detailed than any digital image, and can produce very fine art photographs.
Our group has a track record of new product commercialization and success in developing new products and processes. This particular product has a limited marketplace, but a very devoted one, and success in a small way could lead to wider and more profitable product offerings.


Home page for the project
Outline of the plan
Supporting company with other products that will provide the facility and has funded the feasibility study


Anonymous said...

Bob-if you went for the whole amount, how many would you have to presell and how much would that cost somebody?

Bob Crowley said...

1000 boxes (10,000 sheet film packs) at $200 per 10-pack box. Or, 2000 boxes at $100 per 10-pack. There are various ways to slice it.

If I cut the funding amount in half, that's still a thousand boxes of 10 or maybe 500 boxes of 20.

No matter what there is the additional engineering and tooling costs that are the same no matter if we make one or a thousand, though we could put together prototypes by hand, and might try to do that anyway. I see no way to make pods by hand though.

Bob Crowley said...

The successful Kickstarter projects seem to all pre-sell something to be delivered. That's fine, if we can get enough. Selling a thousand units of something and shipping them piece by piece is different though than having them go to a good distributor. The packing, handling and CS portions can be very costly and once you start you cannot stop easily. I do imagine that I could run this occasionally once everything is set up. There is no magic or unobtainable materials, or secrets, with the one exception of the exact receiver paper construction, but that can be overcome, I am certain.

There are also ways to simplify the construction of the sheet film envelope. If that worked we could also get in the business of supplying replacements for Readyloads of various films, but you must keep in mind how expensive even those were, and what happened to them.

Eric Smith said...

How long before you hear back from Kickstarter? I'm definitely in for some support!

Bob Crowley said...

Hi Eric and thanks

I don't know when or even if we will hear back, but I expect we will, and I will post response, links etc. as soon as they come in.