So, what is a Giclee Print?
The word Giclee is from the French verb gicler meaning "to spray". Giclee is used to describe a quality fine art digital print process combining pigment based inks with high quality archival paper for light fastness and stability. It is most often associated with reproductions of original art works.
Most mainstream home printers use dye inks as opposed to pigment inks. Dye inks are liquid and soak into the paper. Professional lab quality printers use light fast dry pigment inks which sit on the surface of the paper. They print at a high resolution and are classed as archival. This means there should be no colour shift or fading for at least 100 years when displayed carefully behind glass, or 200 or more years when kept in an album. The pigment inks have been tested to exacting standards.
Obviously it is also important how the Giclee Print is looked after. As with any fine art, it should not be displayed in full sunlight all day or in damp conditions. It is impossible for me to guarantee the lifetime because I will have no control over how the prints are displayed or looked after, but there are many references and reviews that can be researched if you are keen to understand further.
As I strive for the best quality in my products, I use a professional 12 ink lab quality printer and archival pigment inks (Canon Pixma Pro 1 with Lucia ink system), and I use acid free 100% cotton rag archival papers sourced specifically for fine art reproductions. This means the prints will last a life time and more if looked after. My reproductions are carefully colour matched with the original art, and with 12 colour pigment inks, the full tonal range and depth of the original is reproduced faithfully.
Why are some of my Giclee prints Limited Editions and others Open Series?
My earlier art works are reproduced in Limited Editions, but I have moved to Open series reproductions now for my newer works. There is confusion amongst the general public of the understanding between Limited Edition Giclee Reproductions and Limited Edition Prints of individually hand pulled works such as lino, woodcut, screen prints etc. I decided I would not add to the confusion. However, from a standpoint of integrity, having sold a number of Limited Edition Giclee reproductions in the early days, I will continue with the limited series, but for those works only.
For large original paintings, the print runs are normally in 4 sizes using A5, A4, A3 or A3+ fine art papers. I tend not to print larger than the original artwork, so where original paintings are smaller than A3, the reproduction prints will not be available in the larger sizes. A border is always left around the print to allow for framing. As the aspect ratio must be maintained to keep perspective (i.e. not stretching the image) the print will not always cover the entire sheet of paper, but it will be the largest possible for the fine art paper used.
Where my work suits reproduction, whether fixed to limited editions or an open series, it is always uniquely numbered and signed, and comes with a Certificate of Authenticity which can be traced back through my records.