In order a print to be considered a fine art print it must meet certain quality criteria.
Paper: The paper itself that the image is printed on must be of high quality, made by natural fibers either from cotton flowers or alpha cellulose. The paper must not artificially bleached with chlorine (acid free). The composition of the surface layer of the paper must allow the ink to adhere well over time, while offering a neutral pH to ensure the longevity of the print under the right conditions. Personally i tend to choose OBA free papers for wedding albums and prints that have longevity in mind. Different types fine art paper will allow you to emphasize the composition of the image, while providing the ideal support for intense colours and contrasts. Some; like baryta type papers will also enable a wide range of grey tones using the correct printers and inks.
Ink / Printer: One of the most expensive liquids on earth. Printer manufacturers have spent millions researching and developing the inksets used in their printers, attempting to expand both the range of color gamut their printers can deliver while extending longevity of the prints.
Once you’ve selected your paper, what you put on the paper is just as important.
Today inks for serious print makers are pigment-based.
Only authentic ink from the manufacturer is used on fine art prints. Why? Testing third party inks indicate that these inks fade at a rate multiple times faster than the original inks they replace. In this case you get what you pay for.
The rest are technical details such as monitors, spectrophotometers, calibrators and other small fine tuning adjustments we make so that our prints are accurate on color and tones. I shall attend to all of them in forthcoming posts.
Often, fine art prints are confused with press prints. Although they both are created by applying ink directly to the paper, there are distinct differences in the quality. Fine art prints, or giclee prints, are printed individually on a professional ink-jet printer allowing the person printing to make any necessary adjustments to an individual print depending on the attributes of the paper used. Authentic fine art papers are used to create these prints. The prints must be properly dried and cured to stabilize the inks for longevity. Depending on the clients needs and the use of the print, coating with special varnish is often used. This type of printing has the ability to create some truly beautiful prints. They often remind us of traditional hand printed fiber prints, rarely printed today.
I believe that fine art printing is the only way to preserve those precious memories you created for your clients. I love the look and feel of fine art print because it makes your photography even more unique. This is why i offer beautiful, hand cut, fully archival prints that you or your client will cherish for decades. I use top quality archival paper that is acid free and currently only use Hahnemühle papers to achieve this.
In plain english this means it will not yellow, fade, color shift of brake apart for a long, long time.
Your images are printed using 11 color PIGMENT inks which to produce stunningly rich colors and subtle gradations. Your black and white images will be printed with 11 grayscale inks. More on that soon.
I hope this small article helped you understand more on what a fine art print is.
If you have questions, please don't hesitate to contact me!
My team and i are devoted to making the best quality prints and albums in the industry.
More on that soon..
Have a lovely day!