How To Make Prints Of Your Art

How To Make Prints Of Your Art

Selling artwork is a difficult game to get into, not least because you might feel that you have to compromise your artistic integrity to actually make a living from it.

However, there is a way that you can have it all.

Making prints of your artwork is one of the ways that you can make money from your original artwork without having to actually part with it.

You can also make a lot more money by selling multiple prints rather than the one-off sale of the original.

But how can you make and distribute your own prints while keeping the costs low? What is the best way to get your images very clear and high quality?

Well, if you keep reading this article, we’ll give you all the information that you need.

Why Should You Make Prints Of Your Art?

Artworks take a lot of time to make, especially if you are painting them yourself on canvas.

After all that work, you might not find it that cost-effective to sell your artwork. Once it’s sold, then there’s no way of getting it back. It’s no longer yours.

However, if you make high-quality scans of your work and turn them into prints, then you can make as many copies as you like and keep selling them for as long as possible.

One of the ways of making your prints more valuable is if you sell them in limited runs.

The scarcity of an artwork is what determines its value, so if you have lots of them then you won’t be able to charge that much.

This is another way of ensuring that when the artwork reaches the client it is of a high quality.

Sometimes it will be hard to get an artwork to a buyer through the post in a trusted manner. Your art could end up at the buyer’s house with some damage, which will lower it’s value.

If your artwork is large, then this can also be difficult to deliver. It could cost you an absolute bomb in terms of postage.

However, if you make a print of it, you can scale it right down. It will also be a lot lighter, which will save you further money on postage.

So how can you go about making your own prints? Well, first it will be worth finding out about art prints and how you can do them properly.

Giclee – What Is It And How Does It Relate To Fine Art Prints?

If you are going to make prints, then you won’t want to short-change your buyers, as this will lead to a lot of damage for your reputation.

Your reputation will be the most important thing is establishing yourself as an artist.

This is why you’ll want your prints to meet the industry standard. This is why you’ll want your prints to conform to the Giclee. But what is a Giclee?

A Giclee print is one that is super high quality, replicating the exact quality of the original print, including all the finer details. But can you make a Giclee print in your own home?

Most average printers will not be able to get the level of quality that you’ll be able to get with a Giclee print.

There are a few criteria that you’ll need to meet before your image is considered a Giclee image.

Here are a few of them:

  • Printer – the type of printer that you use will be very important to producing a Giclee. You’ll need a printer that will be able to match the exact colors and detailing of your original artwork.
  • Inks – you should be wanting to use inks that are pigmented rather than made from dyes. The type of ink that you’ll be looking for will be termed ‘archival’ and will give you the most accurate representation of your original artwork.
  • Printing surface – you’ll need to make sure that you are printing your artwork onto ‘archival’ surfaces. This is usually canvas or rag paper. You’ll have to make sure that the surface that you’re printing on has the ‘archival’ term attached to it.
  • Resolution – this is one of the most important aspects of a Giclee print. Ideally, you should have a resolution of 300 dpi, which stands for dots per inch. Most digital prints will not have level of dpi that you need for proper printing, as they tend to sit at around the 72 dpi level.

If you are looking for a very high dpi, then you can always change this in Photoshop.

But how you get a genuine Giclee print? Well, one option that you can choose is going through a printing company.

There are some companies that specialize in Giclee prints and you can get them reproduced very easily for a fee which will vary depending on how many you are wanting for your needs.

Giclee Prints From A Printing Company

You can get prints from a printing company. These places will be more than equipped to deal with the high volume of prints that you require.

You will also be able to specify the dpi level, which will take a lot of hassle out of what you are doing.

Before you go to your printing company, you’ll need to be able to verify whether or not your prints will sell. One easy way to do this is by having pre-orders on your website.

That way, you’ll be able to judge how many prints you’re likely to sell before committing to the printing costs.

There are many different payment plans that you can sign up for when you are getting your prints done.

Most companies will charge you for selecting the right color scheme. This is what is known as a ‘setup fee’.

A lot of printing companies will also only allow you to print in bulk.

This will make it more cost-effective for them, considering the costs of printing and supplying the materials.

Again, this is why you’ll want to make sure that there is a demand for your artwork.

In addition to this, you’ll probably have to pay a fee for shipping.

Again, this will depend on how many prints you are ordering and how far the prints are being shipped.

Ideally, you should charge for the cost of the printing and more so that you make a profit from selling your prints.

However, despite the fact that you’ll have to reach the industry standards for quality assurance with your artwork, that it might not always be possible for you to keep paying for a printer to print your artwork for you.

So, can you make your own prints at home?

You can, although you’ll need to be sure that you stick to the similar criteria listed above for achieving Giclee prints.

Printing Artwork At Home – How You Can Do It

It is possible to make your artwork at home, if you have the right equipment to achieve that decent quality of artwork.

Again, you’ll have to make sure that your artwork is a good investment for your buyer.

The way to do this is ensuring that your prints are of the highest quality and as close to the original artwork as possible.

You’ll also need to make sure that your artwork durable, as your buyer will want it to last, ideally for a whole lifetime.

This is why you’ll need to pay close attention to the quality of the paper that you’re using.

You’ll also want to make sure that the ink on the canvas does not fade over time. This is also why you’ll be needing to get a quality surface to print on.

Here are some of the basic criteria that you need to abide by when you are printing of good-quality prints:

  • Printer quality – you’ll want to make sure that your printer can produce high-quality prints that amount to a faithful reproduction of your original artwork.
  • Paper quality – again, this will need to be of a high standard, absorptive to the ink that you are using, causing zero smudging or bleeding.
  • Ink quality – this will be very important for getting the right colors for your artwork. You don’t want any vague approximations when it comes to your prints.
  • Resolution – high-resolution will guarantee you finer detailing and a better quality representation of your original artwork.
  • Scanning – to create an authentic scan of your work, you’ll need a high-quality printer that is able to cope with this. From canvas to print, you won’t want any details overlooked.

What Printers Can You Get That Perform Giclee Printing?

What Printers Can You Get That Perform Giclee Printing?

If you do want to print your artwork off at home, potentially yourself hundreds of dollars in printing costs, then getting the right printer will be a sound investment.

Even if you are paying more for a high-quality printer, this will eventually pay for itself if you sell a lot of prints.

Epson Stylus Photo R3000 Wireless Wide-Format Color Inkjet Printer

If you want to produce authentic and representative color and black and white prints, then this Epson printer is great.

This uses Vivid Magenta Ink technology to get the best representation of your original image.

This comes with an easy-to-use interface, allowing you to feed the paper into the tray smoothly. It will not smear or result in blurring from your original image.

This comes with high-speed USB connectivity, which is great if you want to print your image from your home computer or even from your mobile phone.

This produces images that are considered exhibition quality, which is exactly what you’ll be looking for from your prints.

This comes with ink cartridges that are independent and operate extremely fast without compromising quality.

This comes with a vivid color pallet that will easily be able to replicate the look of your original artwork.

It comes with very bright blue and magenta colors, both of which are very important base colors for creating a very realistic representation of your artwork.


  • Reliable – if you are going to be using your printer frequently, then this machine will not suffer from many malfunctions such as paper sticking or smudged printing.
  • High-resolution prints – this will be able to give you some very high detailed prints, which is ideal if you are going to be selling them to discerning customers.
  • Wireless networking – you won’t need any leads to issue instructions to this printer, which gives you a lot more versatility when it comes to carrying your printer from one studio to another.
  • Advanced printhead – this is able to produce resolutions of upwards 5760 x 1440 pixels, which is incredible for a household printer.


  • Expensive cartridges – if you are burning through cartridges, then you might find this printer a very costly investment.

Epson Stylus Photo R2880 Wide-Format Color Inkjet Printer

Next up, we have another printer that is able to produce only the very best high-quality color and monochrome pictures.

This is a much-have for anyone looking to manufacture their own prints from the comfort of their home.

This comes with an advanced black and white color mode, which is great if you are a photographer that specializes in high-quality black and white images taken on a film camera.

This boasts amazing red, purple and blue colors, owing to the amazing magenta pigment technology.

This is great if you want to faithfully replicate the true colors and detailing on your painted picture.

This comes with a grey balance that is dynamic, enhancing a lot more of the color range in your black and white photographs and paintings.

This also comes with a great tonal range, which is ideal for getting the perfect balance of lights and darks in your original painting.

You can print on many different surfaces with this printer, which is great if you want to test your prints on paper before you transfer to a canvas material.

This printer will really reduce the amount of bleed that you get on your final printed images.


  • Resilient – if you are printing large batches of images, then you won’t have to worry the quality diminishing, as this will deliver you quality over and over again.
  • Precise and detailed – this will give you amazing control over your images, honing in on certain details to give you the most faithful reproduction.
  • Self-cleaning – this comes with advanced nozzle check technology which will really reduce the occurrence of clogging and smearing.
  • Great color spectrum – there is not a color that this printer will not be able to reproduce. This is great if you pride yourself on a unique color palette for your paintings.


  • Expensive – this is another very expensive printer. However, if you are going to be selling prints in the long term, then you will quickly recoup your investment.

These two printers will definitely help you to develop those Giclee prints which you will need to basically set up your own art distribution center.

Final Thoughts

Now that you’ve printed your artworks and you are confident that they are of the highest quality available, then it is time to sell them on the market.

However, what if this is the first time that you’ve tried to sell your prints? Where do you start?

One of the first ways you can sell your artwork is at local galleries and craft fairs.

These are great places that you can showcase your work to people. If people wander by and look at the original art, then they can make a bid on some of the prints.

You’ll have to set up a booth that will display your artwork clearly, under decent lighting, with your prints displayed nearby.

You’ll also need to make sure that you highlight the price tag very clearly.

However, one of the more lucrative places that you can sell your artwork is online.

Etsy is a great place to sell homemade artwork prints. You should try to clearly label your artwork and get the clearest digital copy of the original.

This is so the buyer can get an accurate representation of the color and the detailing.

Marketing your artwork through your own website is also a great method of getting your artwork out there.

You can maintain utmost control over the pricing and how your artwork gets to your client.

One of the other benefits of getting your own website is presented. You can set up a website that reflects the style of art that you do.

Having something different to the standard and uniform interface of websites like Etsy will be another great method of expanding your brand and selling your artwork.

However, one of the drawbacks of designing your own website is that you will probably have to have some vague knowledge of website design.

Also, you could pay someone to design your website, as you might recoup the money from your print sales very quickly.

There are great websites such as Square Space that will allow you to design your website from the ground up. They have very helpful customer support which you can access 24 hours a day.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Best Prepare My Scanner For Good Quality Printouts?

First off, you’ll need to make sure that you have the right scanner that is capable or reproducing digital versions of your original artwork.

You will also have to make sure that the canvas fits on the scanner itself.

Next, you’ll have to make sure that your scanner is completely free from dust and scratches. Make sure that your scanner has been cleaned by a soft cloth.

How Can I Tell If My Print Is As Good As The Original?

You should do a test print and see if the colors and the detail of the print copy matches that of the original. Holding them side-by-side, this should be obvious.


We hope that our guide to creating proper high-quality prints of your artwork has given you a better idea of how to approach, either by going through a third party or doing it yourself at home.


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