Thursday, 20 April 2017

Mesh/Material/Light, Cyanotype Process

Cyanotype is a photographic printing process that produces a cyan-blue print. Engineers used the process well into the 20th century as a simple and low-cost process to produce copies of drawings, referred to as blueprints. The process uses two chemicals: ammonium iron(III) citrate and potassium ferricyanide.

The English scientist and astronomer Sir John Herschel discovered the procedure in 1842.[1] Though the process was developed by Herschel, he considered it as mainly a means of reproducing notes and diagrams, as in blueprints.[2] It was Anna Atkins who brought this to photography. She created a limited series of cyanotype books that documented ferns and other plant life from her extensive seaweed collection.[3] Atkins placed specimens directly onto coated paper, allowing the action of light to create a silhouette effect. By using this photogram process, Anna Atkins is regarded as the first female photographer.[4]