I made a peculiar discovery today. A gross but comical and intriguing discovery. A discovery that involves a normal unimpressive red grading pen and a normal unimpressive housefly.
While on the computer earlier, something about the pen caught my attention out of the corner of my eye. At first I thought one of my children punched a hole into an eraser with the end of the pen. Then, I thought that somehow some thread ended up in the tip. I stopped just short of picking the thread out with my fingernails when I realized what was in the end of the pen! (*shiver)
Well that couldn’t happen if you tried!
I recall the pen getting separated from the cap. I’ve had the cap on my dresser for awhile, waiting to find it’s missing mate. I found the pen the other day and capped it.
We have been remodeling our living room, dining room and kitchen. And with the remodel … flies make their way in through open doors and windows. I suppose this guy found his way into inside the cap. And when I capped the pen. Well, unfortunately, the fly was trapped unknowingly. (*yuck!) He apparently attempted an escape, but to no avail.
Gum Bichromate printing is an alternative process that allows you to print as many or few colors as you prefer, using watercolor pigment. Here are a few trial prints and how they look after each color pass. Each pass consists of coating the paper with sensitized pigment solution, drying, contact print exposure under UV light, development, and drying.
Cyan Pass using Cyanotype & Yellow Pass
(with Gum Bichromate printing you can use Cyanotype for the Cyan Pass in lieu of a blue pigment)
Magenta and Black Pass
(The Black Pass tends to stay very light. You can build any color up with multiple passes)
Final Cyan Pass with Cyanotype
(In a smaller print the cyanotype responded nicely, these were 3″ x 4″. The cyanotype can have a tendency to bead up on larger surfaces that have a lot of gum built up).
This is a trial print in which I was working with curves and a different method for preparing my digital negatives in attempt to get more detail in the hair and face.
Cyan Pass using Cyanotype
Black Pass (The method I was trying did not work well on this seperation negative. It did not block the highlights and muddied down the print).
Final Cyan Pass (Cyanotype. This is an example on how the Cyanotype may not work well on larger prints. This is around 7″ x 11″ and you can see areas in which the cyanotype beaded up). You will also be able to see that this method compared to the image below, can produce flat flat/dull results. I have not tried to build the colors up with multiple passes … that may be the answer to producing a richer look.
This is the “summertide” print using gum for each layer, including the Cyan pass. The exposure time was a lot higher as well. While I find the rich quality to be absolutely gorgeous, I lose the detail because the pigment layers begin to block up. In the mean time, I’ll continue to work to find a happy medium between the above print and this print.
We made it! My 8 yr. old daughter and I fulfilled our commitment to a 30 day photo-a-day challenge! Some days were a lot more fun than others (when you are in the mood, you get a little more creative, perhaps?).
We went out at dusk looking for some purple flowers that we didn’t realize close up in the evening. We had so much fun, though. Our little walk made my daughter uncomfortable because we were “too close to the woods”. But then, we were distracted by the fireflies, which took us back and forth all over the yard — which then made our cat extremely hyper!
Anyhow, the first image was accidental, but it was my daughter’s pick for the day.
Livin’ on the edge …
… well, until next week when the cast comes off.
The work is hasty, because we didn’t have much evening left, but we still had fun with it.
My daughter did not help with the planning of today’s photo. Well, I didn’t plan it either … I just took it.
I told her, “I took today’s picture without you, but it’s okay because you’re in it”.
To which she inquired, “Were you spying on me?”.
“Kind of. But when you see it, you’ll be okay with it”.
We are neighbors with my mother-in-law. She saw her Nana out in her water garden this afternoon and asked if she could go out and swing with her. When I checked on her by peeking out the window, I knew that it had to be today’s photo. My daughter approved.
I took the photo looking out my kitchen window. The blur in the foreground, if it bothers you, is from little flowers that are displayed on my windowsill.