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Cinema Ecologica: header Karel Doing Workshop

Workshop Phytography

Cinema Ecologica: Workshop Phytography

Filmmaker Karel Doing provides a workshop aimed at recording plant prints on film emulsion using botanical juices and sunlight. Together you will create two 16mm animations using flowers, plants or herbs you bring along or that you pick from Eye’s immediate surroundings. The phytography workshop’s results will be screened the same evening in the shape of two film loops with an improvised soundtrack.

poster Cinema Ecologica: Karel Doing Workshop
You don't need a darkroom to make phytograms as this technique relies primarily on the chemical reaction between plants and photographic emulsion.

The basic procedure is as follows: select a plant and carefully pick the leaves or select flowers and take apart the petals. The leaves or petals should be relatively flexible and flat in order to make good contact with the films’ emulsion.

Soak the leaves or petals in a solution of water, soda and vitamin C. Place the paper, or roll out a strip of film, on a table or other flat surface in full daylight (the film strip can be as long or short as desired). Apply the soaked plants to the film, taking care that none of the solution is spilled on the emulsion and secure maximum contact between the plants and the emulsion.

Leave the filmstrip with the applied organic material in full sunlight for quick and high contrast results and in the shadow for slower and less contrasty results. Carefully remove the leaves, petals or flowers and submerge the filmstrip in normal photographic fixer or use a strong salt solution as fixer. Wash the paper or filmstrip well and use some ecofriendly soap as wetting agent. Gently brush off any remaining organic residue with your hands and let your results dry before handling further for projection, exhibition or scanning.

This is part of


Production year



150 min.



Part of

Cinema Ecologica

Much in life is uncertain, but one thing is sure: climate change. Cinema Ecologica focuses on how film directors depict the relationship between humanity and the earth: from nail-biting disaster films to artistic meditations, from romantic nature experiences to astounding science fiction.

Learn more
campaign image Cinema Ecologica

Why in Eye

Be surprised by the images nature gives you.

still from Phytography (Karel Doing, GB 2020)
still from In Vivo (Karel Doing, GB 2021)
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