10 Questions you should ask a fine art photo printing company
When you’re looking to get you beautiful photographs printed to fine art standards, whether this is for an exhibition of your photographs or you’re looking to sell fine art Giclee prints of your photographs or maybe you’re considering Giclee canvas wraps of your photographs, here are the 10 questions you should ask a reputable fine art photo printing company
1. Should my image be in a print ready file format?
In order to create Giclee prints from your photo image, the file needs to be atleast 300dpi (dot per pixel). If you’re not sure if your file meets these requirements, a professional photo printing company should have a facility, where you can upload your file and they can check it for you.
2. What choice do you offer? Are they Giclee prints?
You need to ask your professional photography printing company this at the onset. They should be able to provide information about the print process. Giclee prints are archivable (long-lasting) and are printed with pigment inks that have a great light fastness, meaning they won’t fade. Your customers will be sure of a quality fine art photo print that will last. A professional photography printing company should also provide information about the sizes they print, border options and substrate options.
3. What services do you provide?
When choosing a professional photo printing company you may require advice with editing your images, this could be over the phone help or on a one to one basis. Not all fine art photography printing companies offer the same level of services. Some only provide online ordering services with a limit of choices.
4. What size Giclee prints do you offer?
A good fine art photography printing company should offer a range of sizes, to suit your budget. You may have to crop your image if it doesn’t fit to their sizes.
5. Do I have a choice of borders and bleed options?
A fine art photo printing company will either offer set border sizes and colours or may offer a wider choice, depending on whether you are mounting your fine art print or considering a wrap around canvas photo print. Bleed means the image is printed right to the edge of the paper cut, leaving no border.
6. Do you have a choice of paper and canvas substrates? Are they archivable?
A reputable fine art photography printing company will have a range of archival (long lasting) papers with various finishes available and check what weight of papers they provide. The heavier the weight (250gsm+) the better quality of Giclee photo print you’ll have, this applies to canvasses too. For a substrate to be classed as archival it has to be a cotton rag material.
7. Do you keep stock of papers, canvasses and pigment inks?
A premium fine art photo Giclee printing company should be all about quality. So if they list a fine art branded paper that you order, that is the paper your photo image should be printed on. They should also ensure that if they offer Giclee prints, they should be using pigment inks for printing. This safeguards the standards you should expect and receive and that you won’t be letting your customers down with a sub-standard non-archival Giclee print.
8. Do you provide print proofs and paper samples?
What you see on your screen might not be the same as the fine art printing company. Therefore it makes sense to have a print proof of your image, this is a small print showing an area of the overall image. You should also be able to request the proof is printed on your preferred paper choice, so you’ll have a better idea about how your print looks on the paper. At this stage if you want to make changes to your print you can and re-submit it to the printers with the adjustments or you can request that the fine art printers make the adjustments. Proof prints can be provided by post or even better if the fine art Giclee printing company has a one to one colour correction service, make use of it. In the long run you’ll save time. Time spent colour correcting with an expert should be a pleasant experience, if they are knowledgable in colour space.
9. Do you provide white label packaging and do you notify me of any delivery delays?
This is a great service if you’re selling your Giclee photo prints direct to your customers. It means you can place your order with the professional photo printing company and they will package with your company details and send it direct to your customer. Saving you the expense of two delivery charges. Communication is important and any reputable fine art printing company should inform you of any delays.
10. Do you keep my image on file for repeat orders?
It’s good to know when you have a repeat order you can rely on the fine art printing company to still have your image on file, with all your adjustments still in place. This means your re-order should be the same Giclee photo print as printed before.
Any reputable, knowledgable fine art photo printing company should be able to answer the above questions. They should take pride in offering a great customer experience and you should feel a valued customer. Good communication is all part of a good service.