'Impossible' Project Interviews,  Alternative Mobile Photography Processing,  News

A Letter From Impossible’s CEO

Dear Impossible Pioneers and Customers,

In just a month from now, Impossible will move from the office and shop space it has occupied for the past four years on Broadway and Canal, in Manhattan, to a new space in Brooklyn. Sadly, we will also say goodbye to around half of Impossible’s current US employees, some of whom have been with the company since its foundation.

A smaller team will continue to manage Impossible’s North American customer service, warehousing and fulfillment, as well as camera refurbishment and repair.

In recent months, we have sharpened our focus on film research and development, as well as the design and development of a new camera to be launched in 2015. To afford to do so, we have had to re-assess our global presence. In April, this year, we announced the closure of our global Project Spaces, with the exception of Paris. We are also closing our offices in Japan and China.

Impossible has a lot of work to do on its core product – analog instant film. And while more people than ever are using Polaroid-format instant photography, driven by the wider availability of refurbished cameras and big strides in the quality of Impossible’s Color and B&W films, we still have some way to go to surpass the beauty, stability and real instantaneity of Polaroid’s original films.

Late last year, we hired Stephen Herchen, the former Chief Technology Officer for Polaroid under Edwin Land, and a co-founder of the US-based Zink Imaging, as Chief Operating Officer. He now oversees film development and production at Impossible’s plants in Monheim, Germany, and Enschede, in The Netherlands.

Our largest investment of both time and money has been – and must continue to be – in the development of our faster-processing, next generation films, as well as in the design of new cameras that will sustain the relevance of these films for a new generation of photographers.

Impossible is becoming much leaner, but more efficient. We are returning to the basics of a smaller, more communal and manageable scale of a start-up – which, when all is said and done, Impossible still very much is.

When Florian ‘Doc’ Kaps and Andre Bosman bought the very last factory in the world manufacturing Polaroid instant film, five years ago, they assumed something of a sacred trust: to create films – and cameras – that would make the late, great Edwin Land proud. A new (and younger) generation of Impossible employees are even more intent on doing just that!

If they’re successful, this analog instant medium for which we all share a passion is not only going to survive but thrive for future generations.

Kind regards,

Creed O’Hanlon
CEO, Impossible
Berlin, Germany


Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website— TheAppWhisperer.com— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - TheAppWhispererPrintSales.com has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: [email protected]

One Comment

  • Tracy Mitchell Griggs

    These growing pains beg a question:

    Why does the development of new technology mean the death if older processing methods? I blame not the lack of technical capabilities, but the failure of imagination in marketing, strengthening and expanding a customer base, supporting artists and embedding the product offerings in schools – I am pointing this criticism at Polaroid but the lessons might well be applied to your efforts, which I applaud – good luck.