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Printing On Canvas: Methods

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Printing on canvas brings beautiful pieces of artwork into the price range of the general public.  One way that printing on canvas is achieved is called lithography and has been performed for many years.  Giclee is a popular newer method of reproducing artwork using printers and a special ink method.  There are advantages to using both of these practices.  Whether the traditional method is employed or the newer one, there are a few options that must be decided on for the product.  The type of canvas, the display method, and the finishing touches are important decisions that are made in the production of the art pieces.

 

There are two general types of materials available on which to reproduce the artwork.  The first and most common is cotton.  Cotton mediums for producing artwork have been around for hundreds of years.  Usually these include only one-hundred percent cotton products.  The other cloth is made from polyester.  This is mildew-resistant and has become more common in recent years.  The ink tends to adhere to the polyester a little better than that of cotton.  The cracking potential, humidity resistance, thickness, and pre-printing treatment of the materials used are important factors taken into consideration when choosing which type and grade of medium to use for the reproductions.

 

Display methods vary depending on the desired effect.  Printing on canvas can be done in a full-bleed method known as gallery wrap where the pictures go across the entire piece of material without leaving any border.  Other options include adding design borders that are full-bleed, reflections of the original work on the outer edge, blurred edge finishes, or leaving it white.  Black borders around the edge make the picture seem to come out toward a person in three-dimensions.  Each produces its own distinct effect.  In addition, the use of framing or stretching gives a professional and elegant feel to a piece.  Stretching a canvas across a wooden frame is the most preferred method.  For larger works the back of the art is stabilized with a cross bracing.  These are either glued or stapled to the fame.  When this display method is used it generates an amazing three-dimensional feel to the gallery's merchandise.

 

A few finishing touches can make the difference in the overall effect that a piece of artwork brings to its environment.  Some works are coated with a varnish to lengthen their life.  This is important if the material was not pre-treated to be archival grade.  Others have custom frames added.  Some are kept simply with no extras, to stand alone.  All these touches or non-touches convey different feels to the room where the printing on canvas is displayed. 

 

The old method of lithography and the modern giclee form both use canvas art to make reproductions of artwork available to the general public.  The clarity and vibrancy that can be achieved with this method rival that of the original work.  Artists are typically pleased with the incredible results from this form of reproduction.  The type of material used, the way the artwork is displayed, and its finishing touches help to create varying moods and effects of this art form. 

 

 

 

 

 


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