about giclée prints and digital capturing

Giclée has no qualitative meaning. It is a term coined by Jack Duganne from the early days of digital printmaking to describe a fine-art quality ink-jet print. Technically, a print made with a consumer printer using dye inks may be called a giclée because it was produced using the ink jet process. Papers and inks are just the beginning of the differences. Because the equipment used in giclée printing is relatively accessible, there has been a proliferation of studios offering the process without the skill set to make truly fine prints. Take a look at any of my print and you will see precise detail, accurate color, and absolutely no flaws.

The first and most important process in reproducing any piece of fine art is a quality digital capture or file. All my images are captured at Barry Norris Studio here in Taos. Barry uses a Betterlight® Super 6K2 digital scan-back to take ultra-high resolution Direct Digital Captures. The scan-back is set up much like a medium format camera under color correct studio lighting and literally scans my art (rather than merely taking a photograph) capturing all the detail of my original work right down to the texture of my paper. A scan can take 7 minutes and produces up to a 311mb file. In contrast even high-end digital SLR cameras will only produce a file 1/10th the size.

My work is currently printed on Epson 9800 and 11880 printers using Epson Ultrachrome K3 and K3 Vivid pigment inks. The archival inks used in my prints are made with actual Japanese color pigments, rather than exclusively dyes.

Because the inks are archival quality, they are printed on the finest papers and canvases in the world. All my paper prints are on 100% cotton papers. All my canvas prints are on cotton Breathing Color Brilliance Chromata White Matte Canvas. Testing has shown this to be a beautiful, slightly textured, extremely stable canvas with excellent color characteristics. Both are the most technically advanced in the print industry. As with all fine art on paper, it should be framed using all archival materials. Even with that level of protection, art should never be displayed in direct sunlight. Following these simple guidelines, your art will maintain its beauty and vibrancy for generations.