Printing Giclées. First...

For the Traditional Artist . . .

Similar to offset lithograph, the Giclée print starts with a 35mm, 3"x4" or 4"x5" transparency of the original painting by a professional photographer. The color correctness of the transparency is critical to insure proper reproduction.

A high-resolution scanner is used to capture the orginal painting's colors, hues, saturation, brightness, tones, paint and canvas/paper texture. The image is than archived onto an optical disk.

Suggestion: The transparency should contain a gray strip and/or a color patch. This will help the scanner and the scanner operator to compare the highlights and the shadows within your painting to a known set of values.

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For the Digital Artist . . .

For the Digital artist, we accept your creative art on optical disk (128, 512 or 1.2 gig), ZIP or CD. Image format should be RGB in either TIFF or PIC. Image size at 300 dpi and at either 1/4, 1/3 or 1/2 of the final image size to be printed.

Calibrating of your monitor to the proof print

You spent hours creating the perfect image. The next step is to print a proof on your desktop RGB (red, green and blue) printer. You decide to make an adjustment in the colors and then another proof is printed. Finally the image meets with your approval.

You copy the image onto a Zip or CD and send it to the commercial printer for a proof before printing the final image. A week later you receive an envelope from the printer containing their proof, then in sets reality.

You were expecting the printer's CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and black) proof to match your RGB monitor and RGB proof. They do not match - why? The colors sure look good on your RGB monitor.

The problem and answer are the same - calibration. Calibrating and maintaining the colors you see on your RGB monitor to your RGB proof and than to the final printed CMYK image is the hardest hurdle to overcome.

I will not attempt to explain color calibration on this web site. There is no sense in re-inventing the wheel or in this case the color wheel. I highly recommend you review a set of tutorials designed by color expert Andrew Rodney at


Electric Paintbrush

  Marlborough, MA.