giclée prints

ordering a copy of your portrait


I find that many of my customers order a portrait of their children for the grandparents and then say they wish they could keep it for themselves, or vice versa! Therefore, I offer giclée prints made by an expert printer based in Kent, who reproduces the pencil portraits so well that even close up I don’t think you’d ever be able to tell that they were prints and not original drawings. This process is also very suitable for making a copy of a watercolour portrait from.

Below: original drawing on the left, and printed copy on the right.

Giclee print of a child portrait
I take a series of high resolution scans of every pencil portrait before sending it out so that customers may come back at any point to order a printed copy. Giclée prints cost a lot less than ordering another original portrait, and since the main costs for the printer are in the ‘setting up’ process, each print that you order means that the cost for each reduces. So if ordering several prints to give to all the relatives at Christmas, you get more of a bargain. Prices are listed at the bottom of the page.

what exactly is a giclée print?

‘Giclée’ (pronounced zhee-clay) comes from the French word gliceur, meaning ‘nozzle’. It is a somewhat generic term used for high-quality, large format, digital fine-art prints created with an ink-jet printer, as opposed to those created with the traditional offset lithography process. Whereas personal desktop printers will typically use only 3 colour cartridges, the big professional printers used to create a giclée print will use 8-12 different colour cartridges of fade-resistant archival ink.

The quality of paper used is also very important to the future preservation of the print. They should be printed onto heavy-weight paper made from cotton rather than wood pulp as it is superior in durability, light-fastness and strength, and survives many more years without fading, discolouration or deterioration. My printer therefore creates the prints onto Hahnemühle 308gsm Acid-Free Photo Rag paper – a specialist paper created for digital prints – with a 100% cotton rag content, which has a similar smooth texture to the heavy-weight cartridge paper that I draw on.

the process

After you’ve ordered your print, I will prepare the scan by ‘cleaning it up’ digitally using Adobe Photoshop – removing any tonal variations added by the scanning process and adjusting the tonal values to what I know will produce the closest match to your original portrait. In the case of an A3 size portrait (or larger) I’ll splice several high-res scans together and blend them so that you can’t see the join. I then send it off to the printer who does further work to set up and callibrate the image, balancing colour profiles and eliminating the background to produce the best match, before running off a ‘proof’ for me to check.

GICLEE PRINT PRICES (includes all packaging and postage)
Original pencil portrait size1 copy2 copies3 copies4 copies5 copies
A421 cm x 29.7 cm8.3" x 11.7"£79.20£88.20£97.20£106.20£115.20
A329.7 cm x 42 cm11.7" x 16.5"£92.40£108.60£124.80£141£157.20

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