U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | RE: Toned cyanotype query

RE: Toned cyanotype query


A few years ago I did some extensive tests on toning cyanotype. I tried a number of toners but found
only two that produced pleasing tones. Most of the others resulted in "muddy" images or caused a contrast  reduction that was undesirable.

First: The following toning bath is toxic so wear gloves,  but it tones cyanotype to a deep ultramarie blue:
5 gm lead acetate dissolved in 100 cc water. Immerse the print and leave it until you like the tone. Wash.

The second process I have named Seigel Toning after Judy Seigel who discovered it. It results in
beautiful lavender and brown split tones with cyanotype. It is a little tricky but can produce some
beautiful cyanotypes.

Solution A: 1 teaspoon of tannic acid to 1 liter of water.
Solution B: 2 teaspoons of sodium carbonate in 1 liter of water.

Start with a dry print. Immerse it in solution A for about 2 min. Then rinse in clear water for about a minute.
Now put the print in solution B.. This is where the color happens. Watch carefully! If you want a split tone, snatch the print out before it gets to the color you want. Now wash the print thoroughly.

I have made some wonderful cyanotypes using Seigel Toning and I highly recommend it to you.
I you ask nicely, Judy may even give you some additional hints.

Good luck and keep printing!

Bob Schramm

This toning process tends to bleach the print slightly so start with a slightly darker print.

Check out my web page at: http://www.SchrammStudio.com

Date: Sat, 27 Oct 2007 14:07:33 -0700
From: linda@turtlesilk.com
Subject: Toned cyanotype query
To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca

I have a book, Photography's Antiquarian Avant-Garde, the New Wave in Old Processes, by Lyle Rexer, and on p. 122 there's an image by John Metoyer that's identified simply as "toned cyanotype". Would anyone on the list be familiar with the book-- and more importantly (to me) what that image might have been toned wth?  The highligts are a purplish gray and the darks are kind of deep indigo.

Linda S.