A Closer Look at Jollylook: The Cardboard Camera

Imagine a camera made almost entirely out of recycled cardboard. And no, we are not talking about disposable cameras. Besides, those cameras are usually made up of mostly plastic. We’re talking about a functional instant camera that can be used and used again that’s made out of cardboard. Turns out, a company called Jollylook creating one.

In early 2017, a Ukrainian team of instant-photography enthusiasts began a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter.com to bring the camera to market. The campaign began with an initial goal of $15,000 with the first mass-produced Jollylook cameras expected by summer. The campaign was a success: More than 6,000 backers raised more than $370,000 and counting.

Billed as “the first cardboard vintage instant camera,” Jollylook is a simple fold-out camera that is a little bit larger than an iPhone box. Designed with a retro feel, the camera body, the shutter and aperture are made of thick paper and laminated cardboard. It contains no electronics, batteries or chargers, but in addition to cardboard, it includes some paper, a pair of lenses and a cartridge for instant mini photos. And best of all, the Jollylook camera is made to be environmentally friendly: Its makers say fewer materials are used in the creation of the camera than is used in the packaging of a regular camera, and the company boasts that the camera “is as dangerous to the environment as a banana peel!”