Art Workshop: Cyanotypes!

Thursday members try out a new technique...

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Today's workshop was a new one for the Arch: Cyanotypes! A cyanotype is a bright cyan-blue print, made by exposing objects or drawings onto light sensitive photographic paper. As you can see from the photos, any part of the image that has been exposed to light ends up a very deep blue, while anything covered becomes bright white.

Our new art studio coordinator Alex worked with various members throughout the day, encouraging them to draw their images onto acetate, before they arranged beautiful pressed leaves and flowers over the top. This was all laid on top of a sheet of light sensitive paper, with a sheet of clear plastic to hold everything in place. Five minutes in the sun was all that was needed to expose the images, before they were rinsed in water and laid out to dry.

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The process
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Cecil's image: Carmen Miranda!

We caught up with Cecil, one of our Thursday members, to see what he thought!

What did you like about the process, Cecil?

What I like is that it looks appealing. And it's fresh. [My work] is different to the others - it stands out to me, because of the fruits she has on her head and those things... the basket or whatever it was. And then with her bracelets and those things ... I like that. It appeals to me. I enjoyed drawing it. 

What are you going to do with your print?

I'm hoping someone will put it on their wall! Then it will contribute to Headway.

Was the process straightforward?

Yes it was. It was the first time I've done it, really. There have been lots of good workshops before too.

You often spend your time in the art room, don't you?

Oh yes. We have started to do more important things... more advanced. Drawing and those things. It has all started really... taking off! Lots of exhibitions now - we never used to have as many. It's something new. Michelle encouraged me really. I didn't know anything much about drawing. Never had the patience, and never really bothered with it. Then I had my accident and those things, and Michelle encouraged me to do all the things, like drawing, which I get to like afterwards. I have the patience now, and I don't mind doing it. I enjoy it, every bit of it.

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