Classic or cliché

The spike in record players and Polaroid cameras challenges the modern gadgets for photos and music.

Shelves are crammed with record cases and walls are plastered in Polaroid pictures. Hipsters roll their eyes as they walk past the common store displays, scoffing at how mainstream these vintage treasures have become.

But records and Polaroids are more than just trends. In fact, the revival of these devices proves just how timeless they really are.

When I’m in the mood for some music, I look to my record collection. This method of listening to music involves much more than simply pressing shuffle on a playlist.

I have to choose which record I want, open the player, set the disc on the turntable, turn the player on, lift the needle to align it with the grooves and wait for the needle to drop.

Now, in the twenty-first century, music is accessible 24/7 at the touch of a finger through applications and websites, such as iTunes, Pandora and Sound Cloud.

This Crosley record player has a specific and systematic anatomy.

But the process of prepping a record increases my appreciation for listening to music. The anticipation makes the experience more real for me.

The process of using a Polaroid camera evokes similar feelings of satisfaction.

In seconds, I can capture several photos by rapidly tapping my finger on my iPhone screen. But photography has not always been so touch-and-go. The development of a photo has required much more patience in the past.

Polaroids don’t give me the chance to delete and edit photos once I click the shutter. I have to carefully load film into the camera, set the light exposure, squint through the viewfinder to set the frame, and wait for the photo to develop.

Contrary to the popular song “Hey Ya” by Outkast, shaking a Polaroid does not speed up the process.

This Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 provides an easy way to create Polaroid pictures.

The single chance I get to frame the perfect photo and the time I put into waiting for the photo’s development increase my appreciation for photography.

Polaroid photos bring back happy and nostalgic memories for me, which explains why so many people create wall collages or keep a few in their wallets.

Although the processes involved in record players and Polaroid cameras may seem tedious, they also make us realize and value the efficiency of digital technology.

Whether they’re classic or cliché, records and Polaroids take on a more significant role than merely assisting the “artsy” and “vintage” image of teenagers.