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  1. #1
    michaelbsc's Avatar
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    Cyanotype "on" or "in" concrete

    Brian Shaw and I have been discussing cyanotype on concrete in the thread about cyanotype longevity.

    It seemed a good idea to break off and start a new thread about concrete. So here it is.

    My next step will probably be to get Mike Ware's material to better understand the ferric chemistry.

    But right now I'm in a parking lot posting from my phone and need to get back on the road.

    Anyone with any experience please chime in.
    Michael Batchelor
    Industrial Informatics, Inc.
    www.industrialinformatics.com

    The camera catches light. The photographer catches life.

  2. #2
    michaelbsc's Avatar
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    This was my thinking in the other thread, and my meaning about "in" the concrete. Essentially soaking the sensitizer into the top layer. (Might not work.)


    Quote Originally Posted by BrianShaw View Post
    ...sealant prior to coating could help also.
    Actually I was thinking the other direction. Concrete is full of ferric compounds. If you're working with it green one generally works the dyes into the top few mm of the surface.

    If a way can be found to exploit the ferric chemistry of concrete into a natural sensitized layer then it is part of the surface, not just sitting on top of the surface.

    Of course, there is a real possibility that the other reactions going on to set the concrete would wreck any light sensitivity. But it sure sounds worth trying.
    Michael Batchelor
    Industrial Informatics, Inc.
    www.industrialinformatics.com

    The camera catches light. The photographer catches life.

  3. #3
    erikg's Avatar
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    Interesting idea. Sounds like a fresco type of technique.

  4. #4
    Worker 11811's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikg View Post
    Interesting idea. Sounds like a fresco type of technique.

    Hmmm... Interesting... Cyanotype as fresco on plaster, exposed via camera obscura through a pinhole in a window opposite the wall.

    Such as this only permanent and in cyanotype:
    http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/20...ra/oneill-text
    Randy S.

    In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.

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    http://www.flickr.com/photos/randystankey/

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    Jadedoto's Avatar
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    Isnt water a main component of concrete? How would that affect it, since washing away unexposed compounds is half of what makes cyanotype work?
    Vincent Purcell
    Lexington KY Photographer + Media Artist
    http://vincenttpurcell.com

  6. #6
    michaelbsc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jadedoto View Post
    Isnt water a main component of concrete? How would that affect it, since washing away unexposed compounds is half of what makes cyanotype work?
    Yes. As cement sets - not actually concrete - water is bound by the various ferric and ferrous compounds into pretty tightly held molecules. (*)

    But I don't think that any of the UV sensitive reducable ferric salt is going to be bound to water. After all, once you coat a piece of paper you let the layer dry before exposure. So the molecules of sensitizer will be different than the molecules of the structural support.

    Of course, I could be wrong!!

    Clearly this is going to take some research.

    *Decades ago a technician's knowledge of Portland cement's properties in presence of various contaminants was important in my work. But the vast majority of that knowledge is long gone now.
    Michael Batchelor
    Industrial Informatics, Inc.
    www.industrialinformatics.com

    The camera catches light. The photographer catches life.

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    Hiya,

    New to the forum (!).

    Did you ever test the cyanotype/concrete thing? I'm thinking of embarking on it myself and would ideally like to not prime the surface first as want it to be fused.

    Thank you!

    Catriona

  8. #8
    Mike Wilde's Avatar
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    Part of the challenge is getting all of the sensitizer exposed to UV. Conctrete is quite porous, so you would need to move the light source around - the sun is not going to get at all of the sensitiser is my 2 bits comment.
    my real name, imagine that.

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    I will probably be using a UV exposure unit so the chances of an even exposure should be better.

    Does anyone who has tried it have any examples they can put up or any tips? Did you buy paving stones or did you pour your own concrete?

    Thanks!

    Catriona

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Wilde View Post
    Part of the challenge is getting all of the sensitizer exposed to UV. Conctrete is quite porous, so you would need to move the light source around - the sun is not going to get at all of the sensitiser is my 2 bits comment.
    The sun worked for me. The problem I had was with longevity of the image. It faded away.

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