The SX-70 is a folding single lens reflex Land Camera, which was produced by Polaroid from 1972-1981, but it's not the subject of this post. It's only a throwback with an impressive history. The talent comes from the person behind it.
Two years ago, Chris Higgins came across the site of one such photographer. It hasn't been covered as much since then. People tend to discard bookmarks as they become less fresh, much like they discard people who cross their paths almost daily.
This Website, however, isn't one you'll want to discard so easily (which is why I kept the link). Photo of the Day, spanning 1979 to 1997, is an online memorial taken by and preserved for the photographer who resides there. It's both incredibly happy and quietly haunting, especially for those who know how the story ends.
In professional circles, Jamie Livingston was known as the film editor for Se La, which was resurrected in 2003 as part of the Lionel Richie Collection, directed by Michael Bay. Livingston also worked on American Dreamers, Letters Not About Love, and Destination Everywhere.
Pay careful attention to the dates if you visit the links to the Internet Movie Database. What seems especially striking is that those professional projects were completed toward the end of his remarkable and exuberant record of daily life.
“Jamie can be remembered for precisely the things he himself wanted to capture and remember: daily ordinary joy,” said Risa Mickenberg in a release ten years after her friend's death. “Photo of the Day is a work of light, color, laughter, pain, travel, beauty, wonton soup, afternoons, coffee, hanging out, love, life in its entirety. It’s the masterpiece we all create. It’s just that Jamie thought to take its picture.”
The "Photo of the Day" Project Is A Perfect 10 On The Liquid Hip Richter Scale.
It is the work of an extraordinary gentlemen's focus on the more ordinary aspects of his life that makes it an extraordinary piece of work. It begs how we all might be remembered. For many people, Livingston will be remembered as an inspiration. For similar works, visit The Adaption to My Generation.
The Polaroid SX-70 Alpha Instant Folding Camera is still around. The replacement film can be found at the Impossible Shop, which is another amazing Website. But we don't know for how long.