What is a giclee print?

What is a giclee print? A giclee print is a product of modern technology.  Using the best digital cameras and photographers, a high-resolution image is taken of the painting.  Under the artist’s direction the color, value, and saturation is fine-tuned.  The final product is sent to a sophisticated inkjet printer with six to eight jets.

Giclee is a word derived from the French verb gicler meaning to squirt or spray.  The archival quality inks made of the four traditional printing colors and their lighter versions are not dyes, but lightfast pigments.  These pigments are squirted in tiny dots or pixels onto professional artists’ canvas or neutral pH watercolor paper.  The prints can then be mounted for framing on a strong 3/16” foam core called Gator board.  A UV protective spray is usually applied to the surface.

The color, detail, and values are extremely accurate.  The prints, if treated with the same care as originals, are lightfast for 100 years.  Museums, galleries, and photographers sell giclee prints as valuable reproductions of art.

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