In this practical workshop participants will go through the whole cyanotype process and will explore its application in their own artistic activity. The focus will also lie on the discussion of the cyanotype techniques used in contemporary art.
The workshop in cyanotype printing will mainly focus on acquiring practical skills in the cyanotype technique. Participants will learn how to produce the cyanotype solution necessary for this method and will have the opportunity to carry out experiments with the possibility of using them in the artistic field. The technique can mainly be used to either produce photograms or photographic images with the help of photo negatives. Participants will have the opportunity to try out different possibilities of the technique and will then be able to focus on their individual approach.
On the first day an introduction into the practical details of the cyanotype technique will be given. We will look at a variety of examples of cyanotype prints and will learn how to make the solution. In the afternoon first test-prints will be produced. This gives participants a first feeling for the technique and time to prepare for the next day, either through taking photos and copying negatives or through collecting certain material for photograms.
The second day and first part of the third day will be fully dedicated to individual work with the technique. As a group, we will start together with an exercise to get more familiar with the technique. Then the focus will lie on the participants' individual application of the cyanotype technique. There will be space to discuss the individual projects while they are developing throughout the workshop and to receive feedback on an individual level.
On the third day we will bring the individual projects to an end and there will be space to look at the group project and at the individual work together. This will give participants the opportunity to review the developed work and to give an outlook on how they will be able to continue with cyanotype printing in their own artistic practice.
Who can take part?
The workshop is intended for beginners in cyanotype printing. Basically, anyone who has no knowledge of the technique and would like to learn how to work with it, is welcomed. It can be helpful if you have alredy worked with photography, but this is not a requirement as the technique can also be used without even touching a camera.
What is needed?
If participants want to work with certain photos it would be helpful to copy those in negative onto transparent sheets so that they can be used as negatives. Therefore it can also be helpful to bring prints of photos one would like to work with.
To work with photos taken during the workshop, it is possible to use either a digital or a smartphone camera. Therefore, it would be helpful to bring either a camera or a phone with a camera, cables, adapters and USB-sticks to make sure the photos can be printed immediately. Negative prints and copies can be made in copy shops close to the university. This is a possibility and not a necessity to follow the course. It is also possible to work without photos but to use drawings and/or photograms as the main technique. If participants want to make photograms it would be good if they bring a selection of interesting objects.
Also, bringing strong absorbent paper (like the one used for watercolouring) would be helpful.
Jenny Claire Heck is a Berlin-based artist of German and English origin. She studied Art Therapies in the Netherlands and Fine Arts and English at Berlin University of the Arts and Freie Universität Berlin. She graduated as a Meisterschülerin in Fine Arts in February 2017 and is now teaching first-year students at the UdK Berlin. Her artistic work is based on varied techniques with a strong interest in a combination of photographic techniques, drawing, and painting. During her studies, she developed a broad knowledge of the cyanotype technique and wrote her Bachelor thesis on the work of Anna Atkins. For her finals in Fine Arts, she created a piece of work consisting of 333 cyanotype prints adding up to an expanse of 2,5 by 6,3 meters.