About - Past Perfect

Past Perfect - to identify a past action that is defined by an exact point in time

Polaroid is where high science met popular culture in the middle of the 20th century. Like America's first trip to the moon, Edwin Land's invention of instant photography brought advanced technology to a media crazy consumer public. As 20th century art simultaneously defined itself as an all-access genre, the Polaroid took off. Perhaps it was the 'fun' aspect highlighted in domestic marketing campaigns that rendered it unthreatening to those being photographed, certainly it's the casual relationship between photographer and subject that helped mark it for success.

Photographers based in London, England, Pat Graham and Melanie Standage are old-school Polaroid freaks. They adapt old-fashioned land cameras to work in modern settings and document their lives. According to Pat and Melanie, "these old land cameras are hard to use, it takes dedication and a lot of love to pursue this path. Perhaps that's part of the reason. It's a challenge not dissimilar to 'Oulipo' objectives in literary circles, but then it's more. It's also sentimental. It's a big love affair with a charming technology. Perhaps most of all, it's a disarming tool to use in informal settings. It's a camera that 'sitters' respond to like no other."

Pat and Melanie have been communicating and inspiring each other in this series since 1997. Together they have used the format to record fragments of time within a disposable culture. This archive stands as a collection of the lives of two photographers; including family, friends, music, art, landscapes and everything in between.

The Site

This site has been created as an archive for over 20 years of polaroid taking. Each day we will share an image from the collection. Builiding into what is Past Perfect. We encourage signing up to our feeds/twitter for instant gratification.



Special thanks goes out to Owen Richards, who has brought this to life.

Contact Us

All images are Copyright Pat Graham/Melanie Standage. Please do not reproduce or publish with out permission.

Please Contact us with any reproduction requests


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