A very long time ago as a kid I was gifted a gift that sparked something profound: the fascination with photographic processes.
I received by airmail a set of SolarGraphics Kit, including 20 sheets of cyanotype paper and a persplex plate. It allowed you to create your own collages of silhouettes of things to be found around the house. Using only sun and water. I was instantly hooked and I remember overthinking each collage, considering I had only 20 sheets. Somewhere I still must have them archived and if I do find them I will add a couple of examples. Those were the fist and last prints made for a very long time to come. Other kinds of photography kept me satisfied, though every now an then the fond memories to the SolarGraphics Kit would resurface from time to time.
Fast forward to what must be 25 years at least and since one year I have been building my own Cyanotype paper. Now with virtually infinite sheets Cyanotype paper on my hands I have the freedom to experiment.
The motifs used in the Cyanetica print are wide ranging, but there is a common element: science. Whether it is the content of the prints (such as the ‘Out There’ series) or the mathematical techniques to reduce an image to just a few lines (Math Ball). My personal background as an engineer with a strong interest in data visualisation is motivating me to incorporate a ‘data’-element in future work. My strive is to continue to develop new concepts, grow the physical sizes of the works and to revive interest for Cyanotype prints as a whole.
The cyanotype process is an old photographic technique, which was predominantly used in engineering the period between 1870 and 1950 to copy architectural plans; the so-called blueprints.
The motive is created by selective exposure of the emulsion to uv radiation. in the artistic use of cyanotype printing, sunlight was used as a source of uv light, hence the common name ‘sun print’.
Selective exposure is traditionally achieved using a masking technique, however i also use selective exposure techniques using a directed uv source or even selective application of emulsion and global exposure.
Each cyanetica print is unique. even when the motif is the same, the print will be one of a kind. as each print is made by hand, and at every step of the way (applying the emulsion, drying, exposing and developing) beautiful ‘imperfections’ are introduced that give the print its unique look and feel.
The freedom i allow myself in varying upon the traditional cyanotype techniques make it possible to distinguish myself in an already niche art technique. This can be seen from the ability to make prints at large sizes (up to 60x90cm, in the future even bigger) and by incorporating in-house developed electromechanical devices to take manual techniques to a next level.