Creating Prints of Your Artwork

Creating Prints of Your Artwork

You’ve spent hours on every line and brush stroke; you’ve waited for the perfect natural lighting before snapping that photograph. Now comes the hard part: putting your artwork in the hands of the public.

Creating prints of your art makes your work more affordable and accessible to a wider range of audiences than selling solely originals, but not all prints are created equal. Anything worth printing, is worth printing well; don’t settle for a faded image on flimsy paper. This won’t do justice to your art and it won’t produce a product your audience will want to hang in their homes.

Creating and selling prints is a ‘make or break’ process. If not approached correctly, your prints can either create revenue or bleed you dry.

Whether you’re a printing veteran or just beginning the venture into selling your art, having quality prints is a step in the right direction. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with options for creating prints of your artwork, have no fear. We’re about to walk you through the pros and cons of one of the most popular art print options, Giclées.

newsstand giclee example

T.SQ Newstand by Grotesk

 

Why Create Prints of Your Art?

In most cases, original artwork can be sold at higher prices. But once you sell the original, it’s gone forever. So, what happens when more than one person wants your original piece? You don’t have it anymore because you sold it and that was the only one! See what we’re hinting at?  The solution: print your art! Getting your art into homes and galleries is important when establishing your brand.

The Mona Lisa is one of the most iconic paintings in history, but not everyone who’s gazed upon her mysterious smile has been to the Louvre. They know it because it’s been printed and shared everywhere. We’re not saying that Giclées will necessarily propel you to DaVinci status but, putting your art into circulation familiarizes the masses with your work– and that’s important!

Your goal is to create a brand that not only reflects your art work in a positive light but also reflects who you are as a person. Actions say far more than words, imagine what selling a low-grade print to the public say about who you are? Your art was painstakingly created, so honoring it and the hard work you put into it by using a high-quality printing process, is only fair.

If you’re still concerned about your pieces losing their uniqueness, add something special to each print:

numbering example

  • Labeling your prints with numbering indicating that there is only a select few and will encourage people to buy because of it’s limited edition qualities.
  • You can stamp a proof of authenticity or quality into your art to further drive home the idea that the print is the best there is.

signature example

  • By putting your signature on your prints, you’re giving your customer not only a print of cool art but you’re also giving them a souvenir to cherish because of the individuality. 

Decide what you are creating prints for and how many you need. For galleries, you probably only need one large print for display and be ready to take orders for prints from potential clients. It’s important to listen for what your clients would like to see in your print. Creating a dedicated client base not only ensures steady work for you as an artist but also positively promotes your brand. For art shows, consider having a few prints on hand. You’ll have to decide if it will be a limited edition print at a higher price point or if you want lots of prints to sell for a lower price to get your art to as many people as possible.

When you print less and sell high, you’re sacrifice exposure but making more money. If you’re new to the art scene, this route may not be for you if you’re hoping to create buzz. When you print more and sell low, you’re spreading knowledge about your brand but making less money. This will cause more people to see your work, which is a major bonus.

Both strategies have their advantages and disadvantages, but it’s up to you to decide what will work best. The most important thing to consider is what you’re trying to do. If you’re a newbie artist, you have to remember you’re trying to make a name for yourself and create a brand.

What Kind of Prints Should You Use?

The difference is the longevity of the print and the type of paper you decide to use. Different stocks can make the same picture look very different depending on what kind of paper you use. If you don’t have much experience in this area, feel free to contact us with any questions you might have.

If you’ve been searching for ways to make prints of your art you’ve probably come across Giclées but the details about them might be a little hazy. What are they and what makes them better than regular canvas or paper? Are they the best option to display and market your art?

Giclées are created using archival inks and paper, this combination creates prints that last up to 200 years! These inks are pigment based instead of being dye based, like your regular ink jet printer at home.

Here is a video we created explaining Giclées a little more:

These prints have a very high resolution with incredible print quality and longevity and can be displayed in galleries and art shows without anyone accusing you of being a noob.

Preparing Your Art for Prints

To create prints of drawings, it is most effective to use a scanner. For art that is not completely flat, like paintings, it’s better to take high quality photographs of the art. Scanning paintings can cause shadows that will show up in the final print and distract from your art. If you’re going to take a photo of your artwork, there are a few things to keep in mind so that you can get the best image:

  • A lot of cameras default to a lower resolution so that your memory card won’t fill up as quickly. For these images, maximum resolution is imperative.
  • Using a flash or multiple light sources can create shadows that will show up in the final print. Shoot with a single bright light source for the best results.
  • Use a tripod. Make sure your frame is tight on your art so you don’t have to sacrifice resolution.
  • Always save your .JPG or .PNG at the maximum quality available, for Giclees–we suggest 600 ppi.

If you don’t have the facilities to scan or photograph your artwork, we are more than happy to do it for you if you send us the original. We’ll save your files so, if in the future you need to order more prints, it won’t be necessary for you to re-send us your art.

 

Framed or unframed?

Jakprints doesn’t have the facilities to do framing in house but we can suggest framers we have worked with. We suggest framing Giclees to ensure that they will last and be preserved. If you don’t want us to send your prints to a framer, we can roll and tube your prints; or, for smaller prints, we’ll send them flat.

Our Giclees have a five-seven day turnaround. This allows us to ensure quality. If you have any questions, or if you need them sooner, let us know! We love talking to artists to make sure they are getting exactly what they need!

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