Inspired Botanical Prints

November 12, 2020 Newsletter


This week my friend, Rose Osada, released a new collection of botanical greetings cards, stickers, and art prints that were created using the cyanotype process. Rose’s beautiful cyanotype collection is the inspiration for this week’s newsletter.

Besides talking cyanotypes, I’m sharing my favorite shade-loving bulbs and an excellent article describing 8 Landscape Design Principles that you can actually use in your garden.
— Sue  

Photo with permission Rose Osada.

Inspirational Botanical Art

This week my friend, Rose Osada, released a new collection of botanical greetings cards, stickers, and art prints that were created using the cyanotype process.

Cyanotypes are sometimes called sun prints. They’re created by placing objects on light-sensitive paper. When the paper is exposed to sunlight, it creates a brilliant cyan-blue image. 

This new collection turned out beautifully. I grabbed two sets of greeting cards for my Mom and Mother-in-Law for Christmas gifts this year. They’re going to love them!

You can check out Rose’s new prints by visiting her Etsy shop.

5 Cyanotype Greeting Cards

Bible Quote Stickers

Wall Art Botanical Print

Cyanotypes by Anna Atkins New York Public Library Collection

How To Make Your Own Cyanotypes

Rose’s cards inspired me to learn more about cyanotypes. I’ve always wanted to try it, but I never followed through. When I saw the beautiful images Rose created, it inspired me to learn as much as possible about cyanotypes. The process has endless artistic possibilities.

I thought I would share the resources I uncovered this week. I’ve included links to videos showing how to make prints and t-shirts as well as a link explaining that the process is safe.  The last link will take you to Dick Blick Art Supplies if you want to purchase supplies to try to make your own cyanotypes.

Ray Christopher – How to make cyanotypes on paper and fabric

Mathieu Stern – How to Make Cyanotypes Using Your Own Photographs

Cyanotypes with iPhone Photos

Will Brown Shows How He Made Sunprints with Coral

George Eastman Museum – How the Cyanotype Process Was Invented

Shayda Campbell – How to Use a Sun Print Kit

Yes — Cyanotypes Are Safe to Make

How to Make a  Cyanotype T-Shirt

Dick Blick Cyanotype Supplies

Cyanotype by Anna Atkins New York Public Library Collection

The First Book to Use Photographic Illustrations

In 1843, a woman named Anna Atkins began to play around with cyanotypes to capture images of her native British seaweed collection.  Over the next 10 years, Ms. Atkins would publish versions of her photo book for friends.  The book was titled Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions.  This book is considered to be one of the first books illustrated with photographs.

I found it completely inspiring that a woman in 1843 was the first person to use this newly developed photographic technique to document her botanical collection. The historical significance of the books she published can’t be understated. If you are interested in seeing Ms. Atkins’ original images, they can be viewed online at the New York Public library. 

New York Public Library Digital Collection Photographs of British Algea: Cyanotype Impressions
Helpful Hint – Once you click the link above, you need to tap on “Sort by: Title” to get the images to display on the screen.  If you tap “Show Information and Filters” you can also read a description of the collection in Anna’s own words by tapping the “About” tab.

Christie’s auction of Robert Hunt’s copy of Anna Atkins’ book sold for GBP 229,250 in 2004

My Favorite Bulbs for Shade

This year I ordered cyclamen bulbs from Brecks.  They’re the perfect bulbs for my new Woodland garden. These bulbs prefer a well-drained location that is part-shade or shade. They cover a wide growing zone range from Zone 4 to 9 and bloom in late summer-early autumn.  Best of all, they are deer resistant which is needed here in Michigan. 

Silver Leaf Cyclamen Mixture

Hardy Cyclamen

6 Months of Flowering Cyclamen

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

8 Landscape Design Principles You Can Actually Use

I’ve read a ton of books and articles about garden design. Most of them talk in general, fluffy terms that honestly don’t help you design your garden. I don’t need another article talking about line and form and color. I need some actual guidelines I can implement. That’s why I love the article I found on the Garden Design website by Rob Steiner.  

The article covers 7 design principles and 1 “law” for creating beautiful home gardens. This is one of the first articles I’ve read with advice you can actually apply to your landscape projects.

8 Landscape Design Principles for Garden Design

That’s it for this week. I’d love to hear what you think. Just leave a comment below and let me know if you liked this week’s newsletter. I read every note and always reply.  Until next week, happy gardening!

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