Cyanotype, You’re My Type

I took a Zoom cyanotype workshop through Flux Art Space recently—taught by fellow Long Beach artist May Roded—and it was a lot of fun! I’d always admired the beauty of cyanotypes but had never explored it until now, and discovered it to be a fairly simple and inexpensive process that can produce some really amazing results. It was a 2-part workshop, with a week in between. In the first session, May went over the history of cyanotypes and the process of preparing the chemicals to go on whatever substrate you want to use (watercolor paper is always a good option). In the week in between, I collected materials and created some custom images to use for the cyanotypes (paintings on Dura-Lar, stencils). For the second session I picked up a packet that contained sheets of paper pre-treated with the chemicals and a glass panel, backing board, and binder clips for holding the materials together.

Acrylic painting on Dura-Lar
creating test strip

We first learned how to make a test strip, which helps you to pick the appropriate exposure time for the image.

My assistant CC making sure I’m doing it right

Once an appropriate time is decided upon, it’s on to making a “real” print. All you need is tap water and a bit of hydrogen peroxide to develop the prints—no darkroom or special equipment necessary!

developing a “real” print

I was very pleased with the final results, and am planning on making more!

“Blue Chrysanthemum”, 6.5″ x 8″
“Hummingbird Feather”, 5″ x 8″

Published by stephaniehanart

Artist and graphic designer living in Southern California.

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