Readers’ wildlife photos

We have a series of arty Polaroid photos sent by reader Nicholas Hiltner, along with a link to his brother’s NYT piece about the same area. Nicholas’s notes are indented:

Here are several Polaroids I took last summer. They’re from Switzerland’s Lauterbrunnen Valley, where I spent a week hiking (and eating and drinking!) with my brother. I’d include captions for you, but he wrote an article for the Times that says it all sublimely. (His photos are auch sehr schön!)
Laundry drying:
Stephen Hiltner’s article, which has its own beautiful photos:


  1. W.T. Effingham
    Posted March 31, 2018 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Stephen Hiltner’s description of the sounds of large nerds grazing give a whole new meaning to the phrase: “I’ve gotta have more cowbell!” .

    • W.T. Effingham
      Posted March 31, 2018 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      Herds not nerds…😬

      • Simon Hayward
        Posted March 31, 2018 at 8:38 am | Permalink

        That was such a disappointing correction 😦

        • Hempenstein
          Posted March 31, 2018 at 8:57 am | Permalink

          I use this extremely sparingly, but, LOL! (Simon).

  2. Jessy Smith
    Posted March 31, 2018 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    You can still buy Polaroid film?
    Why Polaroid over digital, if you don’t mind me asking, Nicholas?

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted March 31, 2018 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      A bunch of enthusiasts & Polaroid ex-employees started producing the film after Polaroid [the company] died. It isn’t quite the same result as Polaroid original because of the difficulty of getting the exact same chemicals – but later iterations are very close.

      There are three reasons for using instant film [more than one brand available] today
      [1] The social immediacy – a friend uses Instax Mini film in a very compact camera which outputs a business card sized image. Great for down the pub in a group & you can pin the real result on a real wall immediately rather than on an Instagram account nobody cares about. One of the pubs I go to has a giant display of instant film of regulars doing dumb stuff at Xmas etc.
      [2] The expense of the film & the slowness of snapping [you can’t do 20 machine gun style shots to capture the perfect moment], forces the snapper to think about what they’re doing.
      [3] Art for art’s sake. The vintage look of the result. A lot of the old cameras aren’t exactly the same – ageing imperfectly you might say, thus unique output per the camera.

    • Posted April 1, 2018 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

      Michael’s spot on.

      I’ll only add that they make for ultra-popular postcards (my favorite use). Just scribble a friend’s address on the back, stick a stamp in the corner, and pop it in the closest mailbox!

  3. Posted March 31, 2018 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Stupendous! And yes, the article was wonderfully done. I drank it in. Thank you for this.

  4. Mark R.
    Posted March 31, 2018 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    What a beautiful…errr, sublime, place. Would love to visit one day. The article was a pleasure to read and the photos were superb. Loved the farm cat!

  5. Posted April 1, 2018 at 12:06 am | Permalink

    Pretty Polaroids

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