Given the progress in inkjet and media technology, demand for printing photographs and art on canvas is growing exponentially. Whether you have a good inkjet printer or you prefer to have your work done by a professional outfit, it is worth to explore this option for any type of image. We constantly receive requests from wedding and portrait photographers who want to print large canvas for their clients.
Artists regularly order limited edition prints on canvas and watercolor papers to sell to collectors. These reproductions usually are signed and are accompanied by a COA (Certificate of authenticity). Buyers are very receptive to purchasing canvas prints they can hang up without a protective glass, without worrying about scratches and water damage.
The texture of a fine art canvas is unparalleled in beauty; a protective coating is applied on top to give the substrate a matte, lustre or glossy look. If you prefer to experiment with this material to see the results, canvas sheets are available at many stores that carry inkjet products.
The differences between a home desktop printer and a professional one are many but I will focus on the most important. First, commercial machines can be outfitted with pigmented inks; these inks differ from dye inks commonly found in the cheap home printers because they are archival and will not fade for decades. Dyes on the other hand will start losing brilliance in a matter of months. There are some home use printers now that offer a form of hybrid dye/pigment system. The second difference is the nozzle quality; pro level systems have extremely sophisticated nozzles that can render a very fine dot and exceptional tonal rendition.
The process of printing on fine art materials such as canvas and watercolor papers is referred to as "giclee". Giclee is a french term that loosely translated means "sprayed on". It refers to the nozzles which spray ink onto the paper. Giclee printing involves some of the characteristics described above and it is usually performed by professional shops.
You can read more about giclee and canvas printing on our website.
Fabio Braghi is the owner and printmaker of a Fine art giclee print company with over fifteen years of experience in digital imaging.