U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | cyanotype on glass

cyanotype on glass

  • To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
  • Subject: cyanotype on glass
  • From: Dirk-Jan Treffers <dirkjan.treffers@gmail.com>
  • Date: Sat, 18 Jul 2009 12:17:12 +0200
  • Comments: "alt-photo-process mailing list"
  • Delivered-to: alt-photo-process-l-archive@www.usask.ca
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dear list,

I'm trying to see if it's possible to make a cyanotype on just a plain glass frame, in stead of on paper. I thought I had seen some posting on this subject some time ago, but my search results turned out with nothing... (or i used the wrong search terms, then my mistake.,.)

Of course, the chemicals aren't absorbed by the glass, so I'd already considerd to be needing some underlying coating.
I've tried two up to now, but with very unsatisfatory results:
1. I've coated the glass with a hardened gelatine solution (20% gelatine (20 gram gelatine + 80 gram water), some added drops of 100% thymol in alchohol and 5 ml 40% glyoxal).
2. I've roughened the glass with some carborundum, cleaned it with common household ammonia, coated it with a mixture of acrylic gesso with very fine marble powder and coated the glass with that.

The first method resulted in a very slippery gelatine layer, that seemed to wash away a bit whe developping in water. (or maybe I just need more glyoxal), but even without that, the picture just didn't have the charm of the one I made on paper.

The second method resulted in a very faint image (if it would still work the same way as on paper, I would have to increase my lighting time from 6 minutes to approximately 48 to 96 minutes, can't imagine that that would 'solve' my problem). Apart from the very obvious brush strokes in the gesso (does anyone have a solution for that as well? Since it was just a trial-and-error run for me, I didn't bother very much about the brush strokes, but it seemed really difficult to get an even coating...), the contrast of the image was very poor, and even started to fade after afew days.

Am I trying to do the impossible here, or are there any imporant steps I'm just missing? I'm just a newby to all this... Have done some cyanotype and gumprints, but with only the top of my washingmachine in my bathroom, I'm not nearly as much as a pro as you guys... Still, I like the proces and the results very much, and the results on paper, I'm (quite) satisfied with. So, should I just stick to paper, of try the glass-thing, with some help from you guys??

thanks a lot already!

kind regards,

Dirk-Jan (unpronounceble for non-dutchies, I know, for a decade or two I've been listening to the name deejay as well, so if you call me that, I won't be offended)....