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Choosing your Print size for Giclée Printing

giclee printing print sizes

Choosing your Print size for Giclée Printing

When giclée printing whether you’re an artist, illustrator or a photographer, the same principles apply when choosing print sizes of your art and photo images.

It is important when choosing sizes for giclée prints that you make decisions around the artworks and photos you create and consider your brand and image as part of this.

To begin you need a digital file of your artwork or photograph

For photographers and digital artists, you need to use software that allows you to scale up or down your image, to avoid pixelation and you need to make sure your file is saved as a tiff, psd or good quality jpg. Do you know what a print ready file is? See our Blog ‘What is a Print Ready’ for more information

For artists you need to ensure your artwork has been digitally captured to a high standard, preferably photographed by a fine art photographer. Photographing art is highly technical. By ensuring a high quality digital file, you’re protecting the quality of your giclée prints.


flowers and bicycle art giclée printsTechnical Considerations

Firstly the major factor having an impact on the size of giclée print that can be ordered, is the size of the digital file you have of your artwork or photo. Typically the file needs to be 300ppi high resolution, with an embedded RGB colourspace. So a wider range of colours and definition can be achieved in the giclée printing process. 

If you’ve created a digital file of your artwork using your Iphone or similar, it looks great on the screen, but the odds are the actual file will only print to the size of a beermat. A Fine Art Giclée Printing company have ways and means of enlarging this file, but this will be limited by the quality of the file. If there is any out of focus or blurred sections to the digital image, these will only be magnified by enlarging the file. These imperfections will also appear in the giclée print.

So as a general rule of thumb, the larger the print size you choose, the sharper the digital image needs to be, unless artistically you want an out of focus image. Also there is always a slight discrepancy allowed for viewing distance.

Please check out our Digital File to Print Size Calculator to help you. If you need any help then please Get in touch

Giclee printing same size as original

The simplest giclee printing option is to create a fine art print the same size as the original photograph or artwork, but this might not work for you.

One of the first issues is, what if you paint different sized originals, you could could end up with several print sizes, with varying price points for your customers. Which will not only be difficult for you to remember and keep track of, but your customers may feel overwhelmed too.

When it comes to photography giclée printing, the final image after editing and cropping may mean as a photographer you have several sized images too. Again this can lead to a complicated pricing system, that in the end no one can make sense of. 

Your customers will love the original, so you might not want to stray too far from the original look. Therefore it might benefit you to class a range of sizes within a range of small, medium and large. You’ll be offering your customers a choice of size and budget to suit them. This will also allow some movement in what is classed as small i.e you’ll be able to have a discrepancy of a few inches within the size, to suit several giclée prints. This applies to medium and large as well.

Our Blog ‘Being Inventive with Borders’ might offer you a few ideas.

Knowing your Target Audience

Artists, illustrators and photographers need to know their target audience. This will be based partly on the type of images and artwork you create. For example if you create landscape images for the hotel or corporate world, they are more likely to buy large giclée prints. The more unique and specific your original images are, the more niche your target audience becomes.

First and foremost you need to identify who your target audience is. You’ll have a better understanding of their budget and what sizes they are most likely to buy. You also have to consider your international market too. Some countries live in larger houses, apartments and so will be more inclined to buy larger giclée prints. The opposite can be said of other countries. 

Keep it Simple
giclee print from The Artists Print Room

Fine Art Giclée Print

So you need a system that works for you. By thinking ahead and getting used to the various size options and ratios, means you may think before you crop that photograph or put paint to paper.

An experienced fine art giclee printing company will be able to offer you great advice about how you can choose print sizes. At the Artists Print Room we offer a bespoke giclée printing service, giving you a greater freedom of choice. We print up to 1117 mm wide and 2400mm length on rolls. We have 19 genuine fine art giclée papers and canvases from Hahnemühle, Canson-Inifinty, Ilford Imaging and St Cuthberts Mill.



Know Crop Ratios 

Some artists and photographers choose print sizes based on what frames their customers can readily buy. Again you have to consider who your target audience is and what their expectations are. Also don’t forget large giclee prints can be great, but by the time you’ve added a mount and a frame, it could be very large indeed. 

Before you decide on the size of your giclée prints, you need to know about crop ratios. They relate to the original size of your artwork or photograph. Then you can see how to  scale up or down from the original size. By using a crop ratio chart you can see what sizes large or small can be achieved, without losing or cropping any of the original image.

See our crop ratio charts for help.

Editing your image for Giclée printing

As a rule of thumb giclee prints generally match the original artwork or photograph. Though creativity doesn’t have to stop there. You may want to change colours, edit the layout or change the overall tone. Maybe you want to create a special edition, which is slightly different from the original image. There are no hard and fast rules on what your final giclée prints have to look like. The only problem is, if you make drastic changes for each new giclée print, your collection of prints won’t look cohesive. They could confuse your target audience.


So in conclusion, generally any print size can be achieved with giclée printing. Though bear in mind there are technical factors affecting what you can actually print. Including the actual size and quality of digital file you have of the artwork or photograph. Also don’t forget about assessing crop ratios, knowing your target audience and remembering to keep it simple. 

Get in touch  if you’d like to discuss your giclée printing options.



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