[Detail view followed by full image: Rinne Allen's Virginia Creeper cyanotype available at Terrain.]
Although she didn't invent the cyanotype process, Britain's Anna Atkins (1799-1871) is credited with producing 1843's groundbreaking British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions, the first book illustrated solely with photographs. She is also generally acknowledged to be the first female photographer. Today her photographs -- well, to be precise her photograms -- are in the V & A's collection. Photograms are made without a camera or film: the artist (or scientist) simply puts pieces of interest, for example botanical specimens, on light-sensitized paper and then exposes the treated paper to light. In short, this is the cyanotype process.
[Anna Atkins, Poppy, about 1852. V & A Museum no. PH.381-1981.]
[Emily Gomez, Cowee, Franklin, North Carolina – 2006. Cyanotype on vellum from an 8”x10” negative. Print size is 8”x10”, framed size is 20”x16”]
Many thanks to curator Shannon Morris for letting us know about another Georgia-based photographer, professor Emily Gomez, and her innovative cyanotypes which are currently on view through November 30 in Unearthed: A Photographic Search for Native American History at the Museum of Fine Arts at Georgia College.