What is a Giclee?

French for “sprayed ink,” giclees are a sophisticated printmaking process. Giclee prints were originally produced on an IRIS ink-jet printer, capable of producing millions of colors using continuous-tone technology. Today the technology has improved greatly and the machines capable of producing these high quality works have also grown to include inkjet printers produced by Epson, Canon, HP, and others.

Usually on inkjet canvas or fine art paper, giclees are often made from photographic images of fine art paintings in order to produce high quality, permanent fine art reproductions. The extra-fine image resolution possible in this inkjet printing process permits retention of a high degree of fine detail from the original fine art image, rendering deeply saturated colors with broad ranges of tonal values.

Giclée printing has many advantages over other fine art printing methods. Since each piece is individually produced one reproduction can be created at a time if desired, therefore the artist is not obligated to finish an edition. It is possible to order giclee prints as needed without large up-front costs and storage problems associated with other fine art printing methods.