U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: Cyanotype Redux

Re: Cyanotype Redux

I agree, Henry--my exposures are 6-12 minutes, 6 for 1:1 on
regular paper. I wonder if this bleeding is not, in fact,

----- Original Message Follows -----
From: Henry Rattle <henry.rattle@ntlworld.com>
To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
Subject: Re: Cyanotype Redux
Date: Mon, 03 Mar 2008 19:15:33 +0000

>Brian - I'm intrigued by your lightbox that gives such
>short exposures for traditional cyanotype. My own (paper
>about 5 inches from a bank of 20-watt BL tubes) gives a PDN
>standard printing time of 21 minutes. It would be nice if
>it were less!
>Best wishes
>On 3/3/08 17:45, "john@johnbrewerphotography.com"
><john@johnbrewerphotography.com> wrote:
>> Hi Brian
>> If not rod coating I use a brush similar to the Richeson
>> ( a Da Vinci) and have never had any problems. I do use a
>> little tween and my favourite paper is Aquarelle Arches
>> hot pressed for cyanotypes. I have tried different ratios
>of A and B but always revert back to the regular 1:1 mix. I
>> have used foam brushes in the past and not found it
>> abrasive but I kept getting streaks in the developed
>> print. 
>> John.
>> www.johnbrewerphotography.com
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Brian Pawlowski [mailto:beepy@netapp.com]
>> Sent: 03 March 2008 17:31
>> To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
>> Subject: Cyanotype Redux
>> It can't POSSIBLY be this...
>> I mentioned a while back problems with runoff with
>> Cyanotype.  I've tried a few papers over a long time -
>> and was finally trying Crane's Weston Diploma Parchment.
>> I kept getting a lot of run off and bleeding into
>> highlights.  I did get a PH meter after someone commented
>> on Bay Area water (mine reads about 8.3) - so I
>> consistently acidify (very very dilute hydrochloric acid
>- pool chemistry - cheap). I follow Sam Wang's advice
>> through Mark Nelson to clear inverted.  I am using
>> Classic Cyanotype - went from 1:1 Solution A to Solution
>> B to 3:2 - but then as my highlight bleeding problems
>plagued me I went back 1:1 (and with a new UV box my
>> exposures are 1m 50s even at 1:1).
>> But Judy Seigel sent me a note along the lines of "This
>> is a really simple process. Why are you using a hake
>> brush - use a foam brush. Etc."
>> I went to Home Depot, and picked up a couple cheap black
>> foam brushes with wooden handles. After several back and
>> forth tests, I'm concluding the foam brush outperforms
>> the hake and Richeson brushes for my cyanotypes - I'm
>> getting virtually *no* runoff - whereas before it looked
>> like a Smurf took a bath in the tray.
>> Can it *really* be that simple? The foam brush moves more
>> roughly across the paper surface.  Kevin Sullivan in an
>> e-mail sometime back when I made a comment about runoff
>> on COT 320 said it might be necessary to rough up the
>> surface (to break the sizing?) on very smooth papers like
>> COT 320. 
>> Anybody want to weigh in on this?  I've been mostly
>> running calibration sheets (step tablets for PDN work).
>> I'll probably do a few prints later.
>> My only concern is that the foam brush will abrade the
>> surface of the paper too much with resulting loss of
>> image detail (on the other hand - cyanotype running off
>> willy nilly and bleeding into highlights suck). 

Assistant Professor of Photography
Photography Option Coordinator
Montana State University
College of Arts and Architecture
Department of Media and Theatre Arts, Room 220
P.O. Box 173350
Bozeman, MT 59717-3350
Tel (406) 994 6219