Using sunprint paper in a camera?

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fabulousrice

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I think John's idea of exposing it wet an extremely good one and it could bring the needed exposure down into "few hours" range, or even less than that!

For a completely different process, I tried making in-camera exposures of just the FAC mixed w/ a just a little gelatin ( and possibly a touch of CA to get the pH down to where FAC is most light-sensitive, I can't remember now ). I remember the weather was warm, it was probably Summer, and I tried exposures of around 6 to 8 hours in a 5x7 camera in full sun with an un-coated lens at F-2ish. After a few tries I gave up and decided to order some FAO to mix in ( Sandy King found a mixture of FAC and FAO to be a little faster in his "backward exposed" ferric gelatin prints ). Never got back to it, but I remember thinking the exposures were taking so long that I was running into trouble with the air oxidizing the ferrous back to ferric, so I was fighting a losing battle. I have no idea if this would happen with cyanotype ( reverting to ferric ) but it sounds like it's less of a problem since people have managed to make multi-hour/day exposures.

Either way, it might help to place the damp cyanotype paper between two thin sheets of glass in order to keep it damp and exclude oxygen. I've definitely seen with my own eyes that if you put something wet onto cyanotype paper, or if there are areas that are still slightly damp from coating, the exposure is very fast.

And, thank you very much for posting this. The FAO is here and I never continued the experiments... and that would make a great project for this summer. Also now you've got me thinking.... once the gelatin dries, it becomes insoluble, so it might be possible to speed up the process I was working on by dampening the paper underneath it and exposing between two sheets of glass... that's actually a fantastic idea. ( my goal was an in-camera positive process not using dichromate.. I was able to make positive contact prints in full sun with it, but it was too slow for in-camera ) :smile:


You're welcome!
It sounds like - in terms of skills and experience - you're up there and I'm down there
I don't think I even know what the acronyms you're using stand for. But don't waste time telling me, I'm not ready to expose myself to complex chemicals at the moment.

If however there is a simple way to increase sensitivity like Jnantz suggested I will know soon - I emailed the makers.

Thanks for the kind words and I hope you get back to it and show us!
 
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fabulousrice

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I must be channeling in my inner Ron Mowery :smile: because I was thinking about how he would say the ISO and characteristics of silver gelatin emulsion changed depending on if it was exposed wet or dry. I hope the pre-coated paper the OP is using can be manipulated theirs obviously has a preservative so it has a shelf-life. I wonder how the preservatives might impact further manipulation ( dampening, steaming, warming, coating with other benign cabinet found products &c ) to boost its sensitivity contrast &c Couldn't find a MSDS on their website..

I emailed the company that makes it with your suggestion/question and will let you know
 
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fabulousrice

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if there is a kitchen sink chemical ( like vinegar or Vit c or lemon juice or ... ?)

They actually replied very quickly and said they had no idea but shared this interesting link.
This is more technical/processing information i'm used to deal with, but here they use the vinegar to process the print?

I was under the feeling you were saying that I should "prep" the paper with vinegar to make it more sensitive, before taking the picture?
 

removed account4

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Hi.. yeah great article and website!! ( ez to get lost down the proverbial rabbit hole there and end up having tea with the queen!. :smile: )
yup, you can use vinegar bath as contrast control ... .. I wasn't suggesting using vinegar &c in the developing stage but there might be something to treat the paper with to increase its sensitivity before you expose it, so its like a trigger..
I suggested vinegar and lemon juice ( acetic acid / citric acid ) cause from what I remember cyanotypes like an acidic environment so maybe there is a sweet spot using dilute vinegar or lemon juice super dilute (or even tap water if your water is mildly acidic) to put your paper in shoot the paper WET/ DAMP and cut down your in camera exposures :smile:
 
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NedL

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If you are starting with pre-made "sunprint" paper, you could try dampening it ( maybe place it on a wet towel or spritz some water onto it and wait for it to soak in evenly )... you don't want to wash it, just dampen the paper. And try putting it into your camera while it is still damp -- then maybe start with a 1 or 2 hours exposure and see if you can see anything. You should try it soon! Otherwise I'm going to... I'm really curious how much it might speed it up.
 

Vaughn

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Exposing damp cyanotypes -- interesting, but probably not.. Let us know. Usually does not work with hand-made stuff that is not completely dry.
 

Nicholas Lindan

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It may be that exposing wet/damp cyanotype paper will cause the image to develop as the paper is being exposed and thus give the illusion of greater speed. Or, it may not.

If the paper is developing as it is being exposed it may result in self masking and a reduction in contrast.
 

Snowfire

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This is essentially an ultraviolet photography topic. With respect to lenses, the community at ultravioletphotography.com has done a lot of testing and discussion of lenses which transmit UV--of course, dedicated quartz lenses do so, but they tend to be scarce and expensive, so much effort has gone into finding other lenses which happen to suffice; and if you do not need transmission below 330nm or so, there are quite a few of those in sizes appropriate for 35mm cameras. Large-format lenses are less explored as a topic, and due to their thicker glass, they tend to do less well in this department; but that does not mean that none of them transmit enough uv to expose a photograph. Moreover, though it peaks around 380nm, cyanotypes have some sensitivity out to 520nm according to this spectrum:

https://us-browse.startpage.com/av/...2067f8c63f05a8b77700310261f0780a737af1bbf5909
 

Donald Qualls

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YouTuber Nicole Small has been running a series recently about making in-camera cyanotype with traditional cyanotype (her goal is to make direct positive cyanotypes this way) and a homemade box camera that uses a largish hand magnifying glass for a lens. She's actually been getting some visible images with LED/Fluorescent studio lights -- I was very surprised to see this result; I wouldn't have though LED, especially, had enough UV to expose the paper in a reasonable time even at f/4 or so.
 

Snowfire

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Most commom LEDs produce essentially zero UV (I know this from photographic experience!) There are special LEDs engineered to emit at shorter wavelengths, but more likely Small is taking advantage of the visible tail of the cyanotype material's sensitivity. As to fluorescent, a little bit of the 365nm mercury line often does make it out of the fixture.
 

Donald Qualls

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I knew that about fluorescent -- but wasn't aware cyanotype reacted at all to visible blue. She might also be augmenting her visible LED panel with the UV one she uses to make cyanotype prints from negatives -- I haven't watched all of those videos in detail.
 

auburnxc

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After reading this thread and some others, I decided to take a stab at it. I've been using Sun Art paper for years (mostly for hand and leaf prints), and only recently thought about placing it in a camera. I'm happy to report that I've had some limited success with it today. I took my grandfather's dusty Yashica A off the bookshelf and loaded it with a cut piece of Sun Art paper to try a 4 minute exposure indoors. No luck. I could immediately tell it was pretty far underexposed. I took it outside and did an exposure at 17 minutes and 30 seconds. It worked! I then tried a 23 minute exposure that also worked pretty well. The taking lens on this camera is a f/3.5 Yashimar 80mm, which I had wide open. It was difficult to dial in a "perfect " exposure time, due to periods of intermittent clouds in central New York today.
 
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fabulousrice

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After reading this thread and some others, I decided to take a stab at it. I've been using Sun Art paper for years (mostly for hand and leaf prints), and only recently thought about placing it in a camera. I'm happy to report that I've had some limited success with it today. I took my grandfather's dusty Yashica A off the bookshelf and loaded it with a cut piece of Sun Art paper to try a 4 minute exposure indoors. No luck. I could immediately tell it was pretty far underexposed. I took it outside and did an exposure at 17 minutes and 30 seconds. It worked! I then tried a 23 minute exposure that also worked pretty well. The taking lens on this camera is a f/3.5 Yashimar 80mm, which I had wide open. It was difficult to dial in a "perfect " exposure time, due to periods of intermittent clouds in central New York today.

Can you show the results?
 

auburnxc

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AF1C35D4-44CE-4E95-97FD-FE51FCEF20AF.jpeg
AF1C35D4-44CE-4E95-97FD-FE51FCEF20AF.jpeg

Here’s one from last week. Probably an 18 or 19 minute exposure. I’ll post some other examples when I unpack my gear.
 

auburnxc

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A few more examples.
 

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