Last week I filled my home with a group of super talented local artists and we made cyanotypes! World Cyanotype Day is coming up; every year as the last Saturday in September approaches I feel the urge to get people together somehow to make them. In previous years I have tried hosting a formal workshop, but I’ve thrown in the towel with all that business so I decided to spread the blue happiness by having a little art party instead.
I absolutely love sharing the process with people, and am pleased to say that the day was a total success all around! It gives me so much joy to see people’s reactions the first time they see the print in the wash.
The women who attended are artists in a variety of mediums, from painting and collage to photography, textiles, ceramics, mixed media, mandalas, and more! I knew their cyanotypes would be amazing; it was super exciting for me to see how everyone worked with the process to express their own individual vision and style. That’s one of the beautiful things about cyanotypes: they are really only limited by your imagination.
Since my goal - besides just introducing the technique to people - was to encourage people to participate in World Cyanotype Day, we used cotton fabric from Blueprints on Fabric for all of the artwork that day. I find that to be the perfect way to get started with this process, since development times are longer than paper, since it can be left in the wash for a good long while, and since the material is very robust. Goodness knows I have plenty of trays for this kind of thing, and the back yard was a grateful participant.
I had one larger piece of fabric left from last year’s cyanotype making bonanza, so we used that to make a group piece. I didn’t do the best job of cutting it (details aren’t always my strong point) but it can be trimmed up for display. . . .
Several pieces from that day, including the group piece, will be on display next month at A Smith Gallery, where you can celebrate World Cyanotype Day! Check them out and check out the WCD website for all the details.