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I've begun putting together a cookbook of family recipes that I want to pass down to my daughter. To spice things up a bit, I'll be taking shots on Fuji's Instax Wide of my wife and I and her when we make a recipe.

I can't seem to find any data on the archival properties of this film. Does anyone know how long it is expected to hold the image and if there is anything you can do to prolong the image's life?

I have been shooting with the color version of the film, but see online that they also offer a monochrome. Is there reason to believe that it would last better than it's color counterpart?

Please note, I'm quite fond of the instax for this purpose and am, right now, not looking at alternatives but in trying to ascertain how long an image might last and how it would deteriorate. Expected environment for it is in a book that will be stored on a shelf but taken into the kitchen environment often. Unsleeved photos.

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I can't find anything on long-term archival properties of Instax film, either, but this phoblographer article on current instant film and cameras mentions that the B&W Instax will turn sepia (but also states the prints don't fade), so I would assume that the B&W version isn't any more archival than the color.

Polaroids are known to fade. Instant film has to be chemically active to do its thing, so, keeping it inert is likely to be an issue in the long-term. The usual archival storage cues are likely to preserve the life of any photographic print: keep it in a cool, dry, dark place.

While it might take the only-copy/analog romance away and it only works for the Mini and Square formats, have you considered getting an Instax Share Smartphone (SP) printer, such as the SP-2 [mini] or SP-3 [square]? With an SP printer, you could use your phone or other digital camera to make an Instax print, while retaining a digital image to archive (and reprint at need).

  • I had no idea about the SP product. Laser exposure...that's pretty damn cool. The article says that Fuji's recipe is more stable than the Impossible Project's but fails to say just how stable it will remain over time. I'm really hoping for ~4-5 decades of great quality followed by no less than 5 decades of good/faded. That'll give the book a couple generations of life. – Hueco Aug 20 '18 at 22:21
  • @Hueco Just me, but I can't help feeling that's possibly overly optimistic. I'd probably forgo Instax altogether and just use a digital layout program and digital images and put it together on the computer with the recipe text, but that's me. I do have to say, I have an SP-1 (older, uses an LED not a laser; vga, not svga) to go with my X100T and I adore it. My prints haven't faded, but I keep them in a shoebox in the closet, not on display. The display prints are 13"x19" prints I make on my Canon Pro-100 injet. :D – inkista Aug 20 '18 at 23:11
  • The book is a leather bound album with a custom cover burnt into it and binding some thick, old school lookin' paper and containing a lot of hand written goodness (fountain pen, cause calligraphic). So, as much as I would like to use the Pro-10 (pigments ftw ;-) for layouts, I was hoping for the polaroids on this project. I think I will go for the SP though. That is a fantastic suggestion. Thank you! – Hueco Aug 21 '18 at 0:08
  • @Hueco, you're welcome. Ooo! Pro-10! Jealous! Fountain pen-wise, Waterman 52 w/flex nibs ftw! (but you'll also have to pry my Parker 51s and Inkographs out of my cold dead hands) :D – inkista Aug 21 '18 at 0:17

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