Re: pyro and cyano
I have wondered whether hydrogen peroxide was good for the print as
well and have not heard any definitive answer. I only use it when I
need to see how dark the lower values would get - it hardly affects
the lighter areas. With diluted cyanotype emulsion the effect is
minimal as well.
The only reason you thought I tamed the process was because I hid my
huge trash can full of reject prints! I've always agreed with what you
said, that cyanotype may seem easy but it's the hardest to pin down.
On Apr 10, 2009, at 11:45 AM, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:
I quit using the hydrogen peroxide because it was questioned to
perhaps compromise the archivalness of the paper and it was
unnecessary because the print would eventually get to that dark blue
anyway, PLUS it seemed to bleach the print a bit, though this latter
is only subjective to me and another person or so.
BUT this is my question--does the hydrogen peroxided print actually
get darker blue than one that oxidizes over several days? So if it
gets darker, there would be a benefit to it. I have not tested this.
And who the hell cares about the archivalness of my prints--like I'm
going to be famous one day????
Let me tell you, people complain about gum being fickle, I find
personally in my practice cyanotype the most fickle process of all.
I can only chalk it up to the fact that humidity and coating plays a
way greater part in that process than people imagine. I know Sam
Wang tames it beautifully.
I also find that it is very unpredictable with my students in
literally every class I have taught on alt. Yesterday, one student
used the same neg and curve and the print was completely overexposed
and unusable. And I know he is not a student that would leave the
lightbox on and go out for a cup of coffee.
But I am always combining cyanotype with another process, either gum
or palladium, the latter which I just love so I actually use it
frequently. I think I just need to really delve into Mike Ware's book.
Christina Z. Anderson
----- Original Message ----- From: "BOB KISS" <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, April 10, 2009 8:06 AM
Subject: RE: pyro and cyano
DEAR CHRISTINA ET AL.,
Does using the hydrogen peroxide cause any problems during
processing or after? I use it because it gives me the final depth
quickly so that I can judge if I have the correct exposure.
From: Christina Z. Anderson [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Thursday, April 09, 2009 11:22 PM
Subject: Re: pyro and cyano
Chris, when you say "six stops"
--- how many steps on the 21-step is that ?
6 stops is 12 steps on a 21 step tablet (1 step=1/2 stop) or 18
steps on a
31 step tablet (3 steps= 1 stop). This is why I don't talk steps
is confusing with whether one is using a 21 or a 31 or a 44, but a
stop is a
stop is a stop.
Yes, cyano gets darker as it oxidizes. I never use, and never
hydrogen peroxide because eventually the print will turn that nice
(If I display ignorance,
please excuse.... But I live in a 21-step dimension, not a "stop"
dimension. In fact when I strayed into the wet darkroom last month
different mission, I couldn't even make the safelight go on !)
In any event, my rule of thumb for an average neg in simple cyano
was 8 or
9 steps, tho I found many ways to modify that. For instance,
thru 37 of Post-Factory #5 ("Managing the Blues") show differences
light source (sun vs. UV bulbs), paper (Strathmore Artists v.
Print, among others) proportions of parts A & B (as discussed on
by... Sandy?, Bob Shramm?, others ?) a while back; time on the paper
before exposure, delayed development, double coating (according to
acid "prebath" ("tends to extend and deepen range very
etc. etc. etc.
That issue is dated "August 2000", so (BELIEVE ME !!!) I've
details (the above is from a quick skim... but I'm not printing
these days, and need that disk space ...ie, what's left in the
for current endeavors, so am TRYING to stay away from this
since you insist.... my eye lights on mention that, to my
discovered that "dry down" in cyano, goes on, not just for one
several ... But you knew that ?
There are also 21-steps A through D2 of various ranges & why (p.
as in "devil get thee behind me," I change the subject: Another P-
around then) shows a "Cyanodyke" -- what the photographer called her
vandyke brown prints over cyanotype. The print was very pretty,
combined tones (tho in repro b&w only). As I recall, she didn't
bleaching, tho of course in the other way around -- cyano over
brown -- the silver gets bleached by the potassium ferricyanide in
cyanotype. A short item, but if I locate it, I'll cite.
not suitable for cyanotype as it is for other processes that have
tonal ranges, unless one were to contract the tonal range of the
to match cyano--or have subject matter that is tonally contracted
BUT, and this is my question: does anyone know the maximum DR
in a pyro neg? I do not have a UV densitometer. And, from
obviously doesn't serve me too well so please answer this, too) a
negative can actually record up to 13 stops of info, pt/pd about
paper about 7, and cyano about 6...you get my point perhaps.
OHHH man do I need to get back to work, this is too fun posting
silly visuals, and hopefully someone will benefit except me :)
Christina Z. Anderson
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