Cyanotype Process: Printing Blue and Beyond
Learn how to maximize the modern cyanotype process to move beyond basic blue, with Max Kellenberger and Niniane Kelley.
Learn to create beautiful prints with deeper blues and a longer tonal range using the modern cyanotype process in this hands-on workshop that was recently named one of 2016’s most inspiring photo workshops by Photoshelter. But—cyanotype process prints can also be so much more than just plain blue! We will also experiment with different methods of toning and bleaching, techniques which allow you to alter the color and mood of your final print.
The cyanotype process was introduced in the 19th century. Unlike the silver process used in traditional black and white photography, cyanotype photographs are made using a solution of iron compounds that react to UV light. Images can be taken with a camera or made by placing objects directly on the paper.
The relative simplicity of the cyanotype process makes it a great introduction to those new to alternative process printing, while the beautiful tonality and artistic flexibility also recommends it for serious fine art practitioners.
cyanotype printingThe cyanotype process is relatively non-toxic (although rather messy so wearing old clothing is recommended), and printing techniques can be carried out in normal ambient light, which makes this printing technique ideal for a home workshop or studio.
Since this is a contact printing process, a negative the size of the final print is required. We will cover a simple method to make enlarged negatives from digital files that students will then print in class. Or, if you would like to experiment with making camera-less images, simply bring in objects to place on top of your cyanotype paper.
Arches Platine paper will be provided for printing, however, we encourage you to bring in other papers—or even fabrics—to print on if you would like.
Friday, March 3, 6–9PM: In this evening class we will cover a simple method of creating digital negatives for your cyanotypes. Bring in digital image files and a flash drive.
Saturday, March 4, 9AM–5PM: We will begin with a short slideshow followed by a printing demonstration. Students will print until lunch, after which we will demonstrate toning methods. Students are free to print the rest of the day.
Sunday, March 5, 9AM–5PM: Students may print all day. The class will meet at the end of the day to share their images and experiences.
Call 415-388-3569 for more information or to register.
Maximum eight (8) participants
Prior darkroom or alternative process experience is not necessary for this class
Students should bring large format negatives, film or digital, or have high-res images to make digital negatives from
If you will be making digital negatives in class, please bring a laptop and a flash drive
Image sizes should be between 4×5 and 8×10
Experimenting with camera-less images is also encouraged
Cyanotype Printing Blue and Beyond
A native of Switzerland, Max Kellenberger has been exhibiting photographic work in the United States and Europe since 1972. He has extensive experience in traditional silver-gelatin darkroom printing, as well as alternative-process printing. His recent photography exhibitions include a solo show Le Scarpe at Corden|Potts in San Francisco, Four Photographers at TUTTIARTlucerne in Lucerne, Switzerland, A One Man Show at Gallery 16 in San Francisco, Blues at Smith Anderson North in San Rafael, and One: Unique Photographs at Klompching in Brooklyn, NY. Max Kellenberger resides in San Francisco, CA.
Niniane Kelley is a fine art photographer living and working in San Francisco and Lake County, CA. A native of the Bay Area, she is has a BFA in Photography from San Jose State University. Her photographic focus is on 19th-century processes, including gum bichromate, cyanotype, and wet-plate collodion. She is represented by Scott Nichols Gallery in San Francisco and Catherine Couturier Gallery in Houston, TX. In addition to exhibiting her work around the country, she was a featured speaker at the 2015 F295 Symposium and participated in a panel discussion on alternative photography at SF Camerawork.