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How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings?
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TOPIC: How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings?
#8526
How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 8 Months ago  
The answer to the title of this thread may seem obvious (go to a printers) but I would like to know more than that if possible. I'm hoping that some of you fine people may be able to help me out with some advice.

Basically, I'm thinking of getting prints done eventually of some of my drawings so that I can offer them for sale. My drawings are done with Graphite pencil on Bristol Smooth Board and I want the prints to reflect this by being as close as possible to the original in terms of quality, tones, colouring and detail. I would also like to have them printed on smooth paper much like the paper that I use to draw on.

I've been doing lots of Google searches on this but the answers seem confusing. There are lots of terms that i don't understand.

I see the term Giclee mentioned a lot but I've heard that it's an over used term these days and that 'digital print' would be a better term in this modern age. Is this true? Also, what is a Giclee print? Is it the type of paper used? The actual print process? Does it relate to having prints as a limited edition or what? I just don't get it.

However, i did have one Giclee print done once as a gift for my cousin. The printer recommended the paper type etc, so I went with what they said. The problem was that the print didn't come out with the same grey tones of my drawing but instead came out in a kind of muddy brown colour which is NOT what i wanted. Also, it was done on paper that had a slight texture and so some of the detail of my drawing seemed to get lost in the texture of the paper or certainly the details just weren't as clear on the print as in my drawing.

So here's some questions.

1. Are there any particular types/brands of smooth paper that are perfect for printing on? I don't want glossy and would prefer Matte but would maybe go with a light sheen if I have too.

2. What is an ideal weight (gm2) for using as prints? I want it to be sturdy and not flimsy but does it need to be very thick?

3. Is there a type of printing process that produces better prints? I have digital copies at 400dpi of my drawings but is Laser printing or inkjet printing going to produce better results?

4. Is getting prints done very costly? I know it will vary from print shop to print shop but could you give me rough prices for what you guys pay? Sorry, I'm not trying to be nosy but just trying to guage costs etc,. I don't mind paying for quality but my budget isn't huge.

5. Do you go to a local print shop or does anyone have any recommendations for a good online print shop?

6. Does the print need to be archival, acid free, coated etc, etc,. If so, are there standards that I should ask for or check for when I get in touch with a print shop?

7. Am I asking too many questions and do i expect too much?

8. If and when i get prints done, should I get them matted also?

Anyway, all help and/or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

Matt Deakin
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#8570
Re: How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 8 Months ago  
Subscribing! I've always wondered this too. It seems like so much money to fork over for prints, and if I'm not selling originals right now I hate to spend a bunch on prints. But, maybe if I had less expensive prints people would buy them?
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#8674
Re: How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 8 Months ago  
Here is a little info on Giclee reproductions.

About Giclee Printing

The Definition : Giclee (zhee-klay) - The French word "giclée" is a feminine noun that means a spray or a spurt of liquid. The word may have been derived from the French verb "gicler" meaning "to squirt".

The Term : The term "giclee print" connotes an elevation in printmaking technology. Images are generated from high resolution digital scans and printed with archival quality inks onto various substrates including canvas, fine art, and photo-base paper. The giclee printing process provides better color accuracy than other means of reproduction.

The Process : Giclee prints are created typically using professional 8-Color to 12-Color ink-jet printers. Among the manufacturers of these printers are vanguards such as Epson, MacDermid Colorspan, & Hewlett-Packard. These modern technology printers are capable of producing incredibly detailed prints for both the fine art and photographic markets. Giclee prints are sometimes mistakenly referred to as Iris prints, which are 4-Color ink-jet prints from a printer pioneered in the late 1970s by Iris Graphics.

They are not the same as your typical 4 ink jet print. The paper needs to be archival, acid free as well to make the repro last for years.

I get my reproductions printed on-line at www.iprintfromhome.com. They use Sommerset Velvet paper which is smooth with a velvety feel. i also find them to be quite affordable Giclees.

Lynne
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#9136
Re:How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 7 Months ago  
I too have my prints done by IPrintAtHome.com and I am very pleased with the quality. I did have some prints in the past done at a commercial neighborhood printing store and I was very disappointed.

Also, if you order $30.00 worth of prints at IPrintFromHome, you get free shipping. I feel they are very affordable!
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#9217
Re:How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 7 Months ago  
The reason you may occasionally see Giclee prints referred to as Iris prints is that the term was originally coined for Iris prints to distinguish them from other forms of inkjet prints. Later the term came to be more widely used; it is a marketing term that has no officially defined meaning.

As for papers, Somerset Velvet paper has a distinct texture. There are papers with less texture (eg Somerset Satin, which I use in preference to Somerset Velvet) but most printing companies will only have a limited range of papers that they use. Explain what you want and ask for a sample - at worst they'll refuse.

Perhaps surprisingly, printing accurate monochrome grey images is much more difficult than producing acceptable colour, because slight changes in colour of the grey are much more easily seen than slight changes in colour tones.

I discussed this with one of the online printers in the UK a couple of years ago, and he said their processes were organised for what the vast majority of their customers wanted - affordable colour prints. He said they'd try to print monochrome, but couldn't guarantee the results. I had them do some sample prints for me, and while the colour prints were fine, I wasn't entirely happy with the monochrome prints, so I still make my own monochrome giclee prints (and also do prints for another local photographer).
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#9219
Re:How to make Fine Art Prints of my drawings? 8 Years, 7 Months ago  
Thanks for all that great info Mike. Wow! How do you make your own prints? Don't you need tons of expensive equipment for that?
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