The blue print [Wet cyanotype workshop]

Wet cyanotype is a photographic process created by Sir John Herschel in1842.
Based on iron chemical compounds, wet cyanotype takes its name from its typical blue/cyan coloured prints. Maybe the simplest and most immediate among ancient printing techniques, it requires a negative of the same size of the final image, to pronto on paper or any other material sensitized  with an Iron Ammonium Citrate and Potassium Ferricyanide: these two elements, once mixed, become sensitive to the solar (UV) light. Once, inserting a photographic negative or one or more semi transparent objects between the UV light and a sensitized sheet of paper, a photographic image will be produced..

Participants will be leaded in a fascinating journey through every step of the processing: setting digital negatives in photoshop or setting objects to print shapes and textures, printing digital negatives on digital film, sensitizing the paper, exposing the frames to UV light and image processing.

Sali d’Argento makes available to participants an UV lamp and an UV contact printer, that make possible to attend the workshop even in the event of direct sunlight failure (cloudy sky). This one-day workshop is open to everyone, adults and children. At the end, each participant will get the opportunity to produce almost one wet cyanotype to take along.

Workshop program


9.00 – 9.30 a.m.: arrival and registration;

9.30 – 10.00 a.m.: introduction to the workshop and the darkroom;

10.00 – 12.00 a.m.: nature photo excursion; shooting and collecting materials session;

12.00 a.m. – 1.00 p.m.: darkroom setting and paper sensitizing.

1.00 p.m.: free lunchtime;


2.00 – 3.30 p.m.: images settings;

3.30 – 6.00 p.m.: printing and developing of wet cyanotypes.

ore 18,30: final analysis and discussion.

ore 19,00: workshop closing.

The program is to be considered indicative and subject to change if necessary to facilitate or better organize the work of the attendees.

Tuition fee: euro 50,00

Max no. of participants: 10

Tuition includes: use of darkroom equipment, transparencies for digital negatives, paper and sensitive gelatine, other chemicals and their disposal.

Tuition does not include: everything not expressly mentioned.

In case of need, an accommodation before/after the workshop is available in Sali d’Argento premises.

Membership: Sali d’Argento membership (20,00 euro) is mandatory and not included in tuition; membership allows taking part to activities and expires on dec 31 of each year.