Set up day

Sunday was a set up day. All of the pieces of the puzzle had to fit in.

I had helping hand from the group setting up the display and arranging my prints around the space.

We started with the fabrics. I had the set up from previous week when I was exploring the space. I liked the most recognisable picture in the corner. I have ironed the fold and set the first fabric. Then we put the one with the shadow of the person  and the little one on the top.

Then it was the time to set up the processing cloth and I decided to add the fourth fabric to the display. The processed fabric extended to the the floor as the water that falls down from the back (I knew that I wanted to put the small print on the top of the dirty fabric). Afterwards we have cut edges of the fourth fabric and set up on the batten as the little fabric to set it off the wall and give a possible movement and natural flow.

Then there was the time to set up small prints. These prints act as links between fabrics and framed prints. Showing details of the negative, the process itself and the effect of the cyanotype on the skin. Quite abstract photographs look like strange landscapes in themselves.

The final bit of the setup was the addition of framed prints. We put prints into frames and started arranging them in the space. The first one I put was the one with the waterfall. I thought it would continue the theme of the falling water started with the small print and continued through the fabric and other small print to the large framed print of the waterfall.

Then I set up the rest of the prints fairly randomly and started slowly rearranging in the space. I liked the frame in the corner to break the space and stand in an more awkward position. I wasn’t sure which print would fit the space but the idea of the frame going across the corner.

The strong image of the walk up and the light at the end of the tunnel ended up in the corner. The light print was put at the end of the display. We have decided to lay down the print were the fabric of the shadow was to give better view of this image.

I believe that the organised chaos of the display suits the ideas I was trying to get across with this project.


Building the display

Slowly preparing the display. The colour of the background looks really sumptuous and will acompany well the blue in the prints. I would like to have more control over the light that comes from the window. but will deal with it if time allows on Sunday. The preparation for the show is taking long time.

I have started painting the wall with Doris on Wednesday evening. First we had to put the tape around the area that was going to be used as the display. Than I have sanded and filled in most visible gaps in the wall. In the evening I managed to clean the floor and get rid of many stains and marks. On Wednesday with Judy we have decided that it would be beneficial to stain all of the frames. I had to reprint all of the cyanotypes for frames. I tried to wash them and get them pressed and very flat before framing. For some reason staines appeared on most of the prints. I prepared the papers in the morning and took some time to print all prints in the afternoon. As the previous prints were produced over a period of two weeks they had quite pronounced differences. In the quiality of blue and intensity of the print. After printing the new set I was rather pleased with the outcome and colour, hue and intensity of the blue in the print. New prints are drying now flat.

On Thursday morning I gave the wall the second coat and got rid of the masking tape.

After the initial touching up of the wall to make it look really clean and with very straight lines, the Friday afternoon was dedicated to the task of frame staining. I have used Brown Van Dyke and Copper acrylic paint. I had to give frames 4 coats to get nice dark finish. Prints are now in the studio under boards.

New prints have arrived. The body cynotype c-type prints mounted on aluminium. These look very glossy and with very modern finish. These prints will contrast really great with the very classical prints in dark wooden frames.

The staining went well and frames start looking uniform with nice finish. It took four slow coats to get the uniformity of the distribution of the paint.

Saturday – wax on the frames. The extra frames arrived so hopefully everything will be in order for Sunday and hanging. I have now cut all of the prints to the frame size. Prints weren’t100% dry so these are still under boards in the studio for another few hours. They will be ok for tomorrow. Dry and nicely flat. I have tidied fabric prints and will see tomorrow which will go up. I have painted some wooden battens to the colour of the wall. All is ready to go up tomorrow.


Fragility of mind can be reflected in the transience of landscapes. A photograph can capture the physical space or the specific state of place at the moment of being photographed. Feelings and emotions that we experience whilst recording the image alter with time. The loss of short term memory can be augmented by internal and external factors. Stress, illness can influence the way we remember or how quickly we forget.

Frames have arrived

trying to visualise the print in the frame. No glazing yet. I like the relationship between the print and the size of the frame. Frame looks very solid, sturdy, able to hold the artwork even if it will be propped against the wall. In the near future will have to see about the colour of the frame. It doesn’t look unattractive in the light frame but will try some staining with Judy during the next tutorial.

One of the frames was damaged in the transport. Called the company and they are sending the new frame and glass replacement.

Working on installation in alternative space

Yesterday it was a day for the installation planning. I have set up different options for the display. I have considered fabric prints in different positions. I like the clearest one in the corner. The body shape print looks well when it is entire on the wall.

I have got another long fabric and in the last of the plans I have left space for another possible fabric. I will not happen until the set up day so I will have to make decisions then and there.

Large Framed prints look kind of set aside when standing on the floor. They look like waiting to be put on the wall or just taken down to make space for the new artwork. I like this relationship between the framed work and the slightly unkept appearance of the fabric prints.

Although I haven’t got the new prints of the body cyanotype, I think the glossy and modern finish will contrast again the display and challenge the viewer further.

Background test

Trying different options for the background colour. Painted over grey background colours didn’t look even close as the one on the bottle. If going for the ‘Ruby Starlet’ would have to add some black and brown to darken the colour and get the required deep red or purple colour.

Body cyanotype

Finally a sunny day. Sunday 6/9/2015. Preparing the cyanotype on my back. Louise has coated my back in the bathroom and I waited for about 30 min for the cyanotype to dry. Wearing black t-shirt helped protecting the coating from being exposed. We have decided that the most suitable place to work on the cyanotype would be the allotment. Once one of the fabric prints was set on the floor as a protection, but I wanted to gather the elements of the processing and elements of the place where the processing was taking place. Louise placed the negative on my back and then took some images for the project. As a record or for the possible use for the final presentation.After about 45 min of exposure we started to wash off the unexposed cyanotype emulsion. Then Louise took more photographs.

Outcomes from the process:

I wanted to have the picture on my back. As the project is about my memory and failures, anxieties about aging process as well as emotional statement.

I had to direct rather than being a photographer. It was a good working experience. It might prove useful in the future. The acceptance of releasing the control is analogous with the acceptance I am going through with my health and medical isssues.