March 7, 2013

Rabbit and Maple - Work in Progress, Update 2

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Rabbit skull
I am sometimes asked where I obtain the skulls I am working with in this series.   Several of them were loaned to me by a friend who spends a lot of time in the woods and has a good eye and a special knack for spotting treasures.  Others I bought online, from a taxidermist who prepares small mammal skulls as a sort of sideline.  I think they are things of beauty, insanely interesting in their structures and their adaptations for their ecological niche and specialized diets. 
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Rabbit skull negative image
I spent a lot of time taking photographs of the skulls.  In photography as in many endeavors I am largely self-taught, so I had to work out the intricacies of lighting, lenses and exposures through educated guesswork and trial and error.  Once I had an image I liked, I messed around with it in a photo program to turn it into what is essentially the equivalent of a photo negative.  The negative image gets printed on a acetate transparency sheet and used to expose and print the cyanotype.
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Stitched rabbit skull cyanotype
Above is a print after stitching. I had fun doing the small circular patterning, and it really makes the image pop. 
As always, thanks for following along.

1 comment:

marshaleith said...

fabulous background quilting! I hope to get back to trying cyanotyping when we get some sun.....yours are amazing.