Wearable Photography


Written by Kinsey Sullivan
24 Friday 24th February 2012

From the website, it seems pretty simple to use. Paint the dye on to the fabric and press onto it anything that casts a shadow. Lumi uses primarily photo negatives, but it can be done with just about anything. We love the way the ink development emphasizes the the texture of the fabric, and the hand of the creator.  Though the fabric becomes brightly pigmented, the end result still feels beautifully organic and handmade. This method also highlights the faded nostalgia of the imagery, and opens a while world of pretty possibilities. 



These images feel very feminine, a fairly common aesthetic in the DIY world. However, the look seems to work especially well when taken out of that hyper-feminine context. Lumi released a line of printed laptop sleeves which handle nicely photography's bold lines and allows the medium to really shine.  



Here, the juxtaposition of the more masculine train image with the sleek, feminine dress is distinctly appealing but more commercial:



The challenge with this medium, and arguably with all mediums, is to highlight its essence. As it's already both possible and common to print photos onto fabric (and mugs, and puzzles, and mouse pads), it's important that the end product still be able to convey that soft craftedness. The ability to achieve that feel using photographs is what sets Inkodye apart.


Photographs were condemned at their inception for being an almost false, mechanical form of art. Darkroom production allows the artist to become evident in the final print, but that process is skill-intensive and exclusive. Photosensitive dyes, like Inkodye, afford anyone a degree of access and ownership of photography. It will be interesting to see how these possibilities play out as photosensitive dyes become more prevalent.


Inkodye is available online in three colors: orange, red, or blue. Share your ideas, comments, questions and projects below.

Don't Panic attempt to credit photographers and content owners wherever possible, however due to the sheer size and nature of the internet this is sometimes impractical or impossible. If you see any images on our site which you believe belong to yourself or another and we have incorrectly used it please let us know at panic@dontpaniconline.com and we will respond asap.