Nancy Abens Artworks | About the Processes

I use a variety of photographic based processes in my artworks.  In the description of the particular portfolios, I mention the processes that the pieces are available in.  Here is more information about the processes.

Cyanotype-one of the earliest photographic processes in which an emulsion is painted onto paper and then a negative or actual objects are placed on the paper, exposed to uv light, and developed in water.  Each piece is unique. CyanotypeCyanotype







Photo transfer onto wood-I use cradled birch painting panels for these transfers.  Edges are 3/4 to 2" deep, depending on the size chosen.  I then paint the panels with an iridescent paint, sanding in between 2 to 3 coats.  The images are first printed onto a transfer film.  The painted boards are coated with a solution that is part isopropyl alcohol and part binding agent.  Once the boards are coated with the solution, the image is gently rolled onto the surface.  After about 2-3 minutes, the film is lifted off and, if all goes well, the image is completely transferred to the board.   Each piece is unique because of the imperfections that occur in the transfer process. Transfers onto Birch BoardsTransfers onto Birch Boards








Photo transfer onto 300lb. watercolor paper-Same overall process as for wood panels except the transfer solution is made slightly different.  Destroyed edges and wrinkles in image are much more common and result in one of a kind pieces.  I mainly use a 300 lb. Arches watercolor paper.  I transfer onto paper that is cold pressed, hot pressed or rough.   Transfer onto paperTransfer onto paper








Photo Intaglio- I first make a digital positive printed as a transparency.  The image is then exposed with uv light onto a solarplate, an aluminum plate coated with a light sensitive emulsion.  Once exposed, the solarplate is then rinsed in water at which time the unexposed areas are washed away and the exposed areas are etched into the plate.   The plate is then coated with ink and printed onto a fine art printing paper using a press.  These images are numbered editions of 10.  PhotoIntaglioPhotoIntaglio






Photo Lithograph-This is another printing process in which the image is printed onto a type of vellum plate (Pronto plate).  The image is then coated with a gum arabic and water solution and then inked with oil based ink, about 4 times.  The plate is then printed using a press onto a fine art printmaking paper.  The resulting images are very rich and pretty high contrast.  There is a higher level of imperfections with this process vs. the intaglio.  Consequently, each image is unique.  Photo LithographPhoto Lithograph