Nina Veteto, Cyanotype Photograms

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I’m a long-time gardener, forager, and art maker, living in the Biltmore Lake community. When I think about the major influences on my life and work, creativity and the natural world stand out as primary. I am particularly fascinated by plants, their beautiful shapes and endless variety, which is what I try to capture through the use of the cyanotype process.

The cyanotype process is a form of alt-photography, that was popularized by Anna Atkins in the 1840s.  Atkins used the technique to publish her extensive seaweed herbarium and is considered the first female photographic artist.

When I make my prints, I begin by mixing a photo sensitive solution that I then paint on paper. After the paper dries, I hand lay locally sourced wildflowers on the paper and then expose the paper to sunlight.  As a result, each cyanotype is a carefully curated and a one-of-a-kind original.

My joy in this process comes from collecting specimens in the beautiful woodlands of WNC.  I press and identify each specimen and then research the cultural and medicinal uses of the plant, as well as the pollinators associated with each. All of this information is included with the print. The prints are available through my online shop.  

My husband and I moved here nearly 20 years ago from Chapel Hill. I feel very much at home in these mountains and delight in all the extraordinary botanical diversity of the area. I am committed to preserving the rich biodynamic heritage of the region, and donate 10% of my profits to Conserving Carolina–a local land conservation organization.

I hope to one day have studio space, but am currently work from my home, which I share with two teenagers, two dogs, two cats and a goldfish (we won at the fair). You can find me online at www.blueridgebotanic.com which includes my blog, tutorials and shop. Or follow me on Instagram and Pinterest @blueridgebotanic


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