Well, We’ve come to the end of sun printing time in my neck of the woods. Due to this mild summer there have been a lot of days that I couldn’t get good prints. My sun printed class was rescheduled twice but even the last date, last Thursday, was too cool and no sun. I hated that as I look forward to sharing this technique. We’ll try again next summer.
Meanwhile, I did get a few prints before our weather turned.
In the following pictures I am showing you how I got the piece on the right. I started with a light gray fabric so anything the sun did not hit would remain gray.
I dipped the moist fabric in Seta Color Transparent Black Lake paint and water, and then laid out the fabric on plastic in the sun. Working fast I scrunched it, making peaks and valleys. I then took Dye Na Flow Brick and painted the peaks.
Next, I went over the background with the black.
I always have a spray bottle with water when I’m sun printing. I like to make sure the fabric is wet especially when adding salt. If the fabric has already dried, the salt will not make any marks on the fabric. Usually when it’s real hot, I have to work real fast.
Then it’s time for the sun to do it’s work. It was a bit windy so I placed some bricks on the plastic to keep it from flying up on top of the fabric.
Here are closeup shots of both pieces while they were still wet.
And the final pieces.
I was happy with the results. I love taking a simple dyeing technique and using it with sun printing. I’m still amazed at all of the texture!
If it’s warm and sunny in your neck of the woods, try this. It’s easy and a great way to add texture and interest to your fabric. I’d love to see your pieces if you do. If you are new to sun printing and my blog, check out my other sun printing posts and tutorial here.
Thanks, for the links to all the other sun dyed projects. All informative. I have all the supplies and the sun is shining. I vow to give it a go today.
Eileen Gidman recently posted..Art, Autumn and Abundance
fabulous instructions…I hope I can try it if the weather cooperates!!But might have to wait till next spring!!
Marsha recently posted..Love of Leaves Done!!
Hi Marsha. Yeah, looks like it will be awhile before I can sun print again! Thanks.
Eileen, I just updated my sun printing file. When I linked it this morning I realized I had not updated it for awhile. Lucky you! I’d love to see how yours turn out.
Many many years ago in a Surface Design Class a couple of other students and I became curious about the mechanisms involved in sunprinting. Our experimenting showed that sun (or even light) isn’t necessary for the process with the Setacolor [?] pigments we were using. Rather it was heat, troughs, and peaks, puddles, barriers (e.g., plastic grids) and things that affected the various rates of drying on the fabric sections that caused migration of pigments from one are to the next. My memory is a little unclear, but it seems to me that pigment flowed from wetter areas to drier areas, leaving those areas which were slowest to dry the lightest in color. Of course there were variations due to type of pigment and other factors as well, but we satisfied ourselves that areas under leaves, etc., remained damp longer and ended up lighter. Hairdryers worked, radiant heat worked, anything that caused exposed areas to dry faster than less exposed areas. The same principle applies to the effects of using salt — think of the flow of water from areas of lesser salinity to greater salinity in an effort to balance the salt content on two sides of a water permeable (but not salt permeable) membrane. This is a very much a layman’s explanation — and it was a long time ago.
Hi Brenda, Wow! Thank you for your comment. Yes, it is all about heat. My understanding is that as the outside fabric dries, the pigment under the masks is wicked out leaving the fabric below white or the original color just as you stated. In my experience the more humidity in the air makes the fabric dry slower so I get a better image. When it’s hot here with less humidity and the fabric dries real fast, the image is not as distinct. Had it been hotter and more humid the other day, the orange piece would have shown more white. I know you can get the same results from grow lights but it takes longer. I’ve never tried hairdryers or heat guns. Love your info on the salt. Now to try this with a heat gun. Thanks again for stopping by and giving me some great information.
Lynda, I love the results you got with this process. I must give it a try. I’ve posted my latest experiment with eco-dyeing a silk scarf. I hope you’ll check it out. Always love your tutes!
Diane Seamans recently posted..September is Half Over!
Diane, Thanks. I was happy with these results. I loved your scarf!!