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Article: Giclée Printing - The High-Quality Printing Solution

Giclee printing panoramic photos

Giclée Printing - The High-Quality Printing Solution

You may have seen us reference this type of printing process across our website and you may be unsure of what it means and why it is so special. So I thought I would give you a quick insight so you can understand what you will be receiving when ordering from us.

What is Giclée printing?

The term Giclée which is pronounced ‘jee-clay’ is derived from the French word gicleur and the meaning of the word is 'to spray'.

Typically Giclée printing consists of using 8-12 colours (inks). We use a 12 colour giclée process which is capable of producing an extremely wide tonal range and colour gamut. You may have a colour printer at home sat on your desk which will most likely be 4 colour (CMYK) that you may have printed your photos with in the past, but the processes are far from being the same - think of it a bit like HD vs SD.

What is the difference between CMYK printing and Giclée?

The main difference between 4-colour (CMYK) printing and 12-colour Giclée printing is the number of inks used and the method of application. 4-colour printing uses cyan, magenta, yellow, and black inks to produce a colour image, while Giclée printing uses 8-12 inks, including additional shades of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, to produce a wider range of colour and tonal variations.

The 12 inks used in Giclée printing also allow for more accurate colour reproduction compared to 4-colour printing, as the additional shades allow for a closer match to the original image. Furthermore, Giclée printing uses a microscopic spray application method, rather than a dot-based printing method a typical 4 colour CMYK produces, which results in finer detail and the absence of visible dots in the final print.

Overall, 12-colour Giclée printing provides a higher quality image with improved colour accuracy and detail compared to 4-colour printing.

Choosing the Right Surface for Your Giclée Print: Paper or Canvas?

Giclée printing is a versatile printing process that can be used on a variety of paper or canvas types, each with their own unique properties and benefits. For example, fine art paper is a popular choice for Giclée printing as it is a high-quality, archival paper that is specifically designed for fine art printing. The paper is acid-free, pH neutral, and has a heavy weight that gives the prints a high-end look and feel.

Canvas is another popular choice for Giclée printing, and is ideal for creating fine art reproductions or photographs with a more artistic, textured look. Canvas is a durable material that is resistant to fading and damage, and when coated with a protective finish, it can provide long-lasting, museum-quality prints.

Ultimately, the type of paper or canvas used for Giclée printing will depend on the your specific needs and preferences. Whether you're looking for a traditional fine art paper or a textured canvas print, Giclée printing provides a wide range of options to choose from, allowing you to achieve the perfect look for your images.

How durable are Giclée prints?

Another really good factor about Giclée printing is that the prints are resistant to fading and typically last for 100+ years and remain looking as good as new throughout. It is the favoured method of printing in the high end, fine art world so that artists can get the best possible reproduction from their original paintings. You will typically find Giclée prints in the best art galleries around the world.

You may ask - This all sounds rather high end and I have only taken a picture on my camera phone, will my photo be ok?

Don’t worry, we specialise in printing from all devices and modern day smartphones have superb cameras that produce a fantastic photo. To get the best from your panoramic photo using this process then we ideally need an image between 150-300dpi. When printing onto canvas then this can be lower. Providing your image was taken on a device with a good camera whether it is your mobile device or the best DSLR camera we are sure your image will be fine and you will be happy with your print. 

We will mention that even though this printing process is of the highest quality we can only print the photos you supply us… So if they are out of focus for example then there is nothing the printing process can do to rectify this. We don’t want you to worry about your image though when ordering. So once it has passed through our online editing system and you have completed checkout, we will always then double check the file for size before print and let you know if there are any flags. 

If you are a professional photographer and would like the ICC profiles then just contact us and we can get these sent to you.

View all of our Giclée printed products here.

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