About Instant Surf
Matt Smith has a rare talent for extracting the delicate beauty found in everyday scenes through his love of Polaroid photography.
Fascinated by the beach surf culture which surrounds him in his native North Cornwall, Matt’s considered yet unintentionally poetic compositions celebrate the simplicity and romanticism of three great loves; surf culture, friend/family life and exploration. Self-taught but with a passion which belies the calming scenes he captures on film, Matt has been shooting Polaroid and instant photographs for over a decade. Specialising in expired film and using an impressive armoury of vintage cameras he has collected over the years, Matt’s talent lies in capturing beautifully subtle moments in time.
Working with a polaroid camera and vintage film presents its own challenges, but Matt champions the medium and skilfully demonstrates the unique way instant film can translate a story when guided by an unerring eye such as his. Matt has travelled through the USA, Australia, Central America, The Maldives and Europe with just a backpack stuffed with heavy cameras and packs of rare instant film to bring about his Places portfolio. He not only loves picture-making and breathing new life into a near-extinct photography medium, but Matt has also converted several cameras into alternative film formats so that they too can be resurrected and assist him in his quest for that perfect image.
If you would like to know more about any of the images, would like to order a print/commission, or would like to feature Matt and his images in a press feature please do get in touch, he’d love to hear from you.
Print and Online
- Mike Pasini - Photo Corners
- Boxspeed film - An interview alongside Adam Bell
- An Impossible project the movie
- OneInstant Kickstarter video
- 12:12 Mens project Guest 2019
- Analog forever magazine - Instant film gallery
- PhotoKlassik International - Volume 1 - Instant film article
- Film Shooters Collective monthly rounds ups
- Polaroid Originals magazine - Instant Art Paris
- Gutless Magazine Article
- Pryme Editions 2017 Annual Journal - Cover and images
- Backwa.sh surfing anthology - Short interview and gallery
- Gutless Magazine Gallery
- Blur Magazine Issue 55
- Otter Surfboards Journal
- Snap it see it - Artist Spotlight
- Pryme magazine Print issue 2 - Expired 8 blog, Best of Roid week Spring 2017, Best of Roid week Autumn 2016
- Poladarium calendars
- Filmwasters 'What did you shoot this weekend'
In 2018 I had the chance to make a short film about my work with my good friend Adam Bell, also a keen polaroid shooter.
The film has been shown at the following film festivals and competitions:
- Anglet International Surf Film Festival (July 2019)
- Portuguese Surf Film Festival (July 2019)
- Durban Wavescape Film Festival (July 2019)
- 4S Film Festival
- Sunshine Coast Surf Film Festival
- Brest Surf Film Festival
- San Diego Surf Film Festival
- London Seasonal Short Film Festival
- Newlyn PZ International Film Festival
- Brest Surf Film Festival
- Waves film Festival - Winner best short film January 2019
- Lisbon Film Rendezvous
- Oregon Cinema Arts Film Festival
- SeeMor Short Film Festival
- Waimea Ocean Film Festival
- London Surf Film Festival - Runner up in Shorties category
- My Rode Reel - Finalist documentary category