Offer potential collectors a way to purchase your art at a lower cost than your
Giclée reproductions at smaller sizes than your originals are a relatively inexpensive way for you
to do this. Print on demand (after taking pre-orders) or print just one or two images to test how
well they will sell. The giclée process produces excellent quality prints that are expected to last
up to 150 years.
The largest size
paper I can print is 17" x 37" (with a 1/4" border all around,
that is an image size
of 16.5 wide by up to 36.5 long. I use only archival papers (Epson watercolor, Somerset
Velvet enhanced, Epson enhanced matte smooth, etc.) and pigment-based archival inks for your
prints. These inks have been tested for lightfastness and have a life expectancy of 80-100 years
on the archival papers I use. If you decide to issue a limited edition (50 or fewer prints of your
image) you will get a certificate of authenticity with each print to give to your buyer along with
Creating a GicléeWhat you need to provide:
Click here for the process
Basically, you provide me with an image - either original art, a digital image of the art, or a slide,
transparency or glossy print of the art. A digital image is created, and sent to the giclée inkjet
printer for printing.
What the Prints Cost:
Click here for some common print sizes/prices.
The first print is priced at 15¢ per square inch. Additional prints of the same image are 10¢ per
square inch. To figure your cost, multiply the dimensions (height x width) of your desired image
size, and then multiply that result by .15 to get your cost for the first print. If you are making a
reproduction a different size than your original, you first have to figure the reduction or enlargement
size so that the proportions will be maintained without cropping or distortion. For example, if your
original is 21x29 inches, you could make an 8x11 inch reproduction without cropping any of your
SHOULD YOU MAKE GICLÉE REPRODUCTIONS OF YOUR ART?
Artists considering giclée reproductions should ask themselves what they are going to do with
the prints and why. Generally speaking, if you are selling nearly every original you can produce
and cannot keep up with the demand for your work, you are the perfect candidate for print
reproductions. Or, if your annual production is low because of the time it takes you to
complete an original, you may want reproductions in order to generate a better payback for your
time. Style is also a consideration. If your work appeals to a huge number of people, rather than a
smaller niche market, you have a better chance of selling both your originals and your prints.
Other reasons for offering print reproductions are:
to give potential collectors a way to own a smaller version of your original art at a cost within
to use commercially, particularly if your work is essentially decorative in nature (hotels and
other businesses often need large numbers of the same images for interior design purposes).
to use for donation purposes to non-profits or other charitable fundraisers in lieu of your
original art. Currently, for tax purposes, the IRS only allows the artist to deduct the cost of
materials (paint, paper, framing) when making a donation of artwork.
What Kinds of Art Reproduce Well?
Some types of work lend themselves to the giclée process better than others. Watercolors, flat
acrylics, pastels, monoprints, lithographs, and drawings in ink, graphite or colored pencil all
reproduce extremely well and can be nearly indistinguishable from the originals. Heavy threedimensional
collages or impasto acrylic or oil paintings are less suitable for reproduction because
inks cannot replicate the dimensionality of the mediums. However, some artists will make giclée
reproductions of their oil or acrylic paintings on canvas, and then add clear impasto gel medium
or oil or acylic brushstrokes by hand over the print to give it a more authentic look and feel.
How many giclées should you print?
Traditionally, entering the print reproduction market was costly for the artist, as he or she had to
invest up front in printing costs for a large quantity of prints (usually 100 or more before it was
cost effective). If the prints didnt sell, the artist was stuck with an inventory of unsold work.
Giclée printing is on demand which means you can print just the number of prints you want
when you want them. If you have a website or other marketing venue, you can pre-sell a print,
then have it printed. You have no inventory of unsold work, and the relatively small cost for
giclées allows you to test market any image to see how well it sells before printing in quantity.
Original art may be preferred over any reproduction by some buyers, but giclées have their place,
and make sense for many artists.