Cyanotype - An introduction to alternate photography techniques


Date: Jul 17-17, 2021
Time: 10:00 am - 04:00 pm IST
Venue: CPB Foundation, Adyar


In this workshop we will explore the chemistry of blueprints and the power of the sun with Mentor, Varun Gupta. He will walk you through the process of printing - from mixing of chemicals, coating of surfaces to exposure times. You will learn to make your own prints - photographs and photograms using objects like feathers, leaves, and any other found object and explore how to create unique pieces of art with almost anything under the sun. 

Cyanotype printing, which involves developing prints by exposing material to the sun, is one of the most accessible alternative photographic processes. Initially in the 20th century, the process was used by architects and engineers to create copies of their notes, drafts and drawings to create what is known as ‘blueprints’. 

The ‘photogram’ process entered the world of photography when Anna Atkins began to document plants. Now the low cost process of printing cyanotype images has built its identity of being an artform, an alternative photographic process and a way to create personal and historic archives.  

This workshop includes:



Ages 15+ only. Prior knowledge of photography or printing is not required. 

You are invited to share 3-4 photographs that you wish to print via cyanotype process, we will generate a negative for you to work with. Please write to [email protected] once you have completed payment to send us the files along with a booking confirmation. 

About your mentor: 

VARUN GUPTA - Co-founder and Director of CPB | Biennale Director and Managing Trustee

Varun Gupta is a commercial photographer, serial-entrepreneur,  digital ad-man and a lover of analogue photography who co-founded Chennai Photo Biennale in 2015. His alma maters include Light & Life Academy and the College of Wooster, US. In 2006 he founded Travelling Lens - a company that conducted specialised photography workshops and holidays in remote areas of India from 2007 to 2015.  Photo Seva is one of his long-term portraiture projects where he travels to make portraits of local communities across India with a large-format camera and B&W film. His work has been shown by galleries in Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, New Delhi, Kochi and Pondicherry.

In 2010, Varun began work with Art Chennai (a city-wide arts event)  to manage their photography exhibitions with a focus on public engagement through which they organised large exhibitions in train stations and beaches in Chennai. His love for public art saw its roots with establishing the first Chennai Photo Biennale in 2016 - an international visual arts festival that promotes and celebrates photography and discourses around it. He is the Managing Trustee of the Chennai Photo Biennale Foundation and Director of the Chennai Photo Biennale. 


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