Anthotypes, Cyanotypes & Hapa Zome

Ages: Pimary age to Adult

Suggested Group size: Any – A solo or group activity

Preparation Time: Half an hour

Time needed for activity: 1 – 1.5 hours

Suggested Location: School grounds, Park, Garden, Woodland

Suggested price: £10.00

Minimum price: £5.00



About the Experience

In this workshop pupils will experiment with the natural pigments found in leaves to create their own anthotypes and learn how natural pigments react to light. As part of the workshop pupils will forage for leaves and objects and learn about the ecology of the workshop site, whether this at the school setting or a local green space. This activity will also teach pupils about the flora and fauna that can be found at the location chosen.  Alongside this technique pupils will experiment with the very similar but more instant process of cyanotypes/sun prints.  Pupils will also learn about extracting the pigments from leaves/flowers to create art works using the Japanese Tataki/Hapa Zome printing technique.

Teachers can expand on the following areas adapting to the age of the children:

  • The History of photography, from contact to digital photography
  • Plant identification and how vital it is to protect our native plants
  • Ecology and conservation
  • The structure of plants & their vital role

Materials List:

  • Foraged leaves (paper bag/pot to collect found leaves in)
  • Pestle & Mortar or hand blender
  • Vessel/bowl
  • Clear alcohol
  • Watercolour or heavyweight paper
  • Paintbrush
  • Scissors
  • Old frames or glass/acrylic sheets to secure the anthotypes for developing
  • Foraged leaves/objects (paper bag/pot to collect found leaves in)
  • cyanotype/sun print paper
  • Scissors
  • Bowl/tray for water
  • Clear sheet of glass/acrylic
Hapa Zome:
  • Freshly foraged leaves (paper bag/pot to collect found leaves in)
  • Hammer/pebble/rolling pin/wooden spoon
  • Cotton material/calico/heavy weight paper
  • Sheet of thin plastic (optional)
  • Hard Board/surface/clipboard

Learning aims:

  • Create artworks that use natural elements
  • Design their own artwork using shapes/pattern/symmetry
  • Understand how nature can create a palette of colour pigments/inks
  • How pigments and leaves can be used to create images through natural light
  • Scientific investigation into fabric absorption and natural dyes
  • Understand the importance of plants/trees
  • Identify plant/tree & flower species
  • History of Photography

In your Zip File you will find:

  • This outline
  • A Detailed Lesson Plan with Additional Resource links
  • Three Video Links:
  • Instructional Video link for Anthotypes
  • Instructional Video link for Cyanotypes
  • Instructional Video link for Hapa Zome

Depending on the time available for this workshop all of the activities can be adapted to create many National Curriculum links in Science, English, PHSE, Design & Technology and Art & Design for example plant identification, photosynthesis, pigments, discussion, written findings etc.  To link to the English and Maths Curriculum each workshop can be adapted to include pattern, symmetry and colour along with measuring the liquids/materials used.  Each activity can involve a written account or plan to include the English links.

Links for this workshop could cover curriculum links for all Key stages in Science, English, Maths, PSHE, Design & Technology, Art & Design.

About the Outdoor Studios Artist:

Laura Thomas is a practising artist who uses photography and printmaking. Laura has a BA in photography from Brighton University and a MA in photography from LCC. Laura has an interest in nature, human presence & relationships; her work can be found in the millennium photographic library and she has been exhibited at a number of galleries across Kent & London. Laura is trained to Gold level in delivering Arts Award to young people and works regularly within schools delivering these courses. Laura worked with Stour Valley Arts for 15 years, delivering workshops and managing projects.  Laura runs ARTmoves organisation offering monthly art nd photography workshops to adults and children.

If you would like Laura to facilitate a workshop for you in person, please Contact Outdoor Studios