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Re: cyanotype

I have not had any personal experience with cyanotype, but have many
photographer friends who have used this process including printing onto
fabric.  Their best examples have been when exposing their paper to sun
light.  Cyanotype's exposure time is usually very slow.  Most
of my friends do contact printing with large format negatives, or opaque
objects such as leaves or noodles.

As for the emulsion rinsing off, most photo-emulsions applied by hand (as
opposed to manufactured) are very delicate when wet. Try not to touch the
wet emulsion and do not put it directly under a shooting stream of water
from the tap to rinse.  After it dries it is fairly durable.

About sizing:  Sometimes, when painting the emulsion onto paper or some
other extremely soluable material the emulsion seeps all the way
through.  Some people size the paper, etc. with scotch guard to keep
absorbtion down to a minimum, saving their emulsion supply and speeding
up the drying time of the paper.

A good resource to check for more detailed instructions would be a
photography book that covers historical printing techniques.  I know of a
really good one on the market, but I just can't remember the name right
now... :)

**Another printing option is liquid light,(liquid emulsion to
paint on objects and expose in darkroom) but I would not recommend it.  It
can be very inconsistant and costly, but on the other hand suprisingly
beautiful in many happy accidents.

Jenn in Washington

On Thu, 10 Oct 1996, Patricia Grass wrote:

> Has anyone worked with this print making technique? We are doing a
> collaborative book and are experimenting with cyanotype as our method of
> "printing" the book. Some directions we have say the paper should be sized
> while others say the opposite. One source suggests you develope the print
> with a sunlamp but we're having a hard time tracing down a sunlamp--lawsuits
> have driven them off the market it seems. Has anyone found another light
> source for development.  One source says that finished cyanotypes are
> sensitive to fingers touching them--can effect the print. This is not good
> for a book which is meant to be fingered. Does anyone have any experience
> with this? Several of our first experiments developed an image on exposure to
> light but the image washed away in the rinse bath. All comments are
> gratefully welcomed.

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