The Fine Art of Giclée

Giclée (pronounced zhee-KLAY) is a French word meaning “to spurt, spray or squirt”, referring to the way these high-resolution, typically large-format, printers work, and has since expanded to refer to the archival quality prints that fine art printing produces.

The Term Giclée

The term “giclée print” connotes an elevation in printmaking technology. Images are generated from high-resolution digital scans or files and printed with archival quality inks onto various substrates including canvas, fine art archival paper, and photo-base paper. The giclée printing process provides better colour accuracy than other means of reproduction.

Carol Evans Mystic Beach
Mystic Beach by Carol Evans – Limited Edition Giclée on Canvas

The Giclée Process

Giclée prints are created typically using professional 8-Color to 12-Color ink-jet printers. Among the manufacturers of these printers are vanguards such as Epson, MacDermid Colorspan, & Hewlett-Packard. These modern technology printers are capable of producing incredibly detailed prints for both the fine art and photographic markets. Giclée prints are sometimes mistakenly referred to as Iris prints, which are 4-Color ink-jet prints from a printer pioneered in the late 1970s by Iris Graphics.

The Advantages of Giclée

Giclee prints are advantageous to artists who do not find it feasible to mass produce their work but want to reproduce their art as needed, or on-demand. Once an image is digitally archived, additional reproductions can be made with minimal effort and reasonable cost. The prohibitive up-front cost of mass production for an edition is eliminated. Archived files will not deteriorate in quality as negatives and film inherently do. Another tremendous advantage of giclée printing is that digital images can be reproduced to almost any size and onto various media, giving the artist the ability to customize prints for a specific client.

Your own images as Giclée on Canvas

At GS & Company, we can have your high resolution photo printed onto Canvas. Email us your full resolution image and we’ll tell you the maximum size it can be printed, and give you a price on a stretched canvas.

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