An Introduction to Fine Arts Printing

Digital printing can be an integral part of an artist’s body of work and the pieces she creates. Whether an artist works in a digital medium or just needs to create prints of an original piece, she will want to control how a piece is printed on a digital printer as a part of the creative process and the distribution of her work.

What types of digital printers are used?

There are a number of different digital printers equipped to handle fine arts digital printing, but some of the best wide-format printers available are from Epson, Canon and HP. These printers create beautiful prints in a variety of sizes and accept the most popular and vivid fine arts inks.

Whether you want to purchase a printer and render your own prints or have a print shop handle your fine art prints, selecting the right printer for your work is crucial.

What inks are best for fine arts printing?

For Giclees and high-quality prints, most printers will use Archival Inks. These inks are capable of producing long-lasting, museum quality prints, perfect for the fine arts. Typically, Archival inks will be made from fade-resistant pigment-based ink.

Pigment inks will not shift in hue or tone as they dry or over-time, even with some exposure to light. However, it is still best to protect your prints by displaying them away from sunlight or environmental hazards – you can even protect your art with UV glass.

What is the best substrate to use?

Part of this depends on personal preference. Do you want a matte or glossy finish? Would you prefer a heavier, canvass texture or a thin paper? There are a number of substrates that are commonly used in Fine Arts printing:

  • Photo paper
  • Watercolor paper
  • Cotton canvass
  • Textured vinyl
  • Other substrates for multi-media artists, like aluminum or foam board

Consider which substrate will have the best print permanence. How will ink adhere to your chosen substrate? Is that substrate particularly sensitive to light exposure or ozone?

Be sure to look for a substrate with a high-quality coating since pigment inks adhere to the coating, rather than permeating the substrate. Run-of-the-mill office paper used in common printers do not typically have a coating, which means they will render a lower-quality print.

Getting started

Before you purchase a printer, consult an expert on digital printing to find out what kind of printer and ink are right for you. With more than 70 years in the printing industry, Independent Ink designs and manufactures custom printing solutions for industrial printers and digital printers.

We sell high-quality replacement inks for the most popular digital printer models, including Canon, Epson, HP and more! Contact us today to learn more about our products and how we can help you get started.

About Independent Ink

Independent Ink Inc. was established in 1939 as a custom formulator of government and military specification inks and solvents. In 1980 a major U.S. bottler asked us to develop jet printing and make-up inks specifically formulated to work with continuous ink jet (CIJ) and drop on demand (DOD) printing equipment. With over 2 million gallons sold to date, Independent Ink is the nation's leading after-market manufacturer of jet printing inks and make-up inks.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply