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Thread: post alternative techniques

  1. #3911

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    La Quinta, CA

    Re: post alternative techniques

    I personally really like the tones in new Cyanotype. Wonder why to toned it away with tannic acid. The important question is do you like this version better than the original Cyanotype. I would like to see both if possible. I think the very warm tone of this detracts from the contrast range that the original cyanotype probably has - but that is just my opinion.

  2. #3912
    Randy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Virginia, USA

    Re: post alternative techniques

    Barry, you might try a dilute bleach bath to see if it gets rid of some of the yellowing. I have never tried the new cyanotype formula, so no idea how it would react in the bleach bath. Actually, with cyanotypes, it's hard to predict how they will come out period.

    Me - I have gotten to where I like the "cyan" color of the cyanotypes and rarely try any toning. The natural color has kind of grown on me. But every now and then the temptation to tone one crops up and I use a dilution of 1 part liquid household bleach to 3 parts water. I do it right after my print has washed. I slip it into the solution and I watch closely since it doesn't take very long to see a reaction, then I pull it out and rewash for a bit then dry. I usually get a mixture of colors, but because I am using bleach I don't seem to get the yellowing of the paper:

  3. #3913
    Barry Kirsten's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Brookfield, Vic., Aust.

    Re: post alternative techniques

    Thanks Dan and Randy, some interesting thoughts for me to contemplate; just what I wanted. I really like the new cyanotype too; somehow cleaner and brighter, which is probably another way of saying better tonal range and separation. Why did I choose cyanotype? I ask myself the same question, because basically I don't like blue photographs. I have seen some that are exceptional, but I don't think all subjects present well in blue. I guess I started with cyanotype as an easier way of getting into alternative processes. I'm also trying to learn carbon transfer, and that is not easy. Among the suggested toning processes, tannic acid seemed the better option to me simply because it doesn't produce a strong color tone (e.g. yellow, violet, green) like some other processes.

    Randy, I used HCl as bleach, according to Mike Ware's recommendation. As you suggested, I have been thinking along the lines of partial bleaching, but have not experimented with that thus far. Although cyanotype is a simple process there is scope for experimentation, and obviously there's a lot for me to learn. Thanks both of you for your thoughts.

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