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Edward Grad 04-06-2008 12:04 AM

Quality printing for digital painting?
Have you ever ask yourself question “how it will appear when I print it”?
I decided to open this threat so people can share and discuss their methods of printing hard copy of digital painting, what model of printer do you use, or names of photo printing services that does very good prints.

In my experience Kinkos gives me absolutely terrible job, laser printing never works for me, their employee suggested to get instead high definition Ink -Jet printer, so I had to print image for portfolio in local photo printing studio and it was actually just not too bad. I think rather going now and experimenting with Ink Jets, three basics in printing that I use always TIFF, 300dpi, CMYK.

Drop a line, share about your experiences, tell us how you manage to achieve what you think works great, or just ask.

roguenroll 04-06-2008 02:08 PM

I used divient arts prints, and they came out better than I hoped, I think dylan cole has some of his up there, that you can buy too. so I guess he uses it too.


for business Ive used overnight prints in cal. for posters and business cards, came out great.

mordecaidesign 04-06-2008 11:41 PM

I also use overnight prints. Overall good experience with them. 5 small runs and two more upcoming runs that I am going to print with them.

As far as printing goes, I've used the whole gamut of what's out there. Nothing beats finding a friend with a small print business or running it through your own Epson 1280. It allows you to experiment. And press check with a friend allow you to say the kind of things you might need to say when at the end of the day they will still work with you. It can be hard to say to a total stranger "run it again, your Fiery is off and so is your color calibration."

At my last job our print coordinator told me that printers are slowly moving over to only accepting RGB color files instead of CMYK because most printers like the big INDIGO printers (which are actually small in comparison) are better calibrated to output RGB or spot than CMYK. I've heard that from numerous people and it's been my experience when using our 1280 that output via RGB color mode gives better results regardless of wether I started the document in CMYK or not , and whether or not I am using PS, Illustrator, or InDesign.

Edward Grad 04-07-2008 09:51 AM


Originally Posted by mordecaidesign
I also use overnight prints.

Is "overnight prints" places where you send your work and they do job over night, can you share some links?

nickmarshallvfx 04-07-2008 10:48 AM

Well i bought one of Dylans matte paintings as a print from deviantart and it came out really nice, im very pleased with it. Will look great on my wall in the new house!
I have heard some dodgy things about deviantart in terms of them getting rights to any uploaded imagery tho, so might be worth looking into.

Matt, its interesting to hear that things are moving towards RGB printing, CMYK can be a pain in the ass sometimes.


digimatte 04-07-2008 12:17 PM

I'm currently looking into using for my photography printing. I got a couple test prints from the before and they looked good. But I'm about to get some larger (11x14) prints made and am preparing some files to get 4x6 proofs first.

They have a 24 hour turnaround and have a great reputation. When I get my prints in I'll repost with a review of the results. They have good prices, many options for paper, and you can specifically select not to have them do any color adjustments (but I recommend calibrating to their profiles and getting a small test proof before doing this on large, more costly prints).

And by "many options" I mean you can get your work on greeting cards, 3D statuettes, even your paintings on the back of playing cards :)

But as far as more useful options, they can print on canvas, business and post cards, and have a book printing service that I'm also looking into for portfolios and such.

p.s. How cool would it be to divide a mountainscape matte by fore/mid/back ground layers and get the 3D statuettes ( made for some room decor. I gotta try that :)

digimatte 04-07-2008 12:27 PM

Oh, and I've used for prints too. Good results but seemed to take longer then necessary. Although recently I've purchased other people's work and the turnaround seems a lot quicker than a few years ago. But I don't want to have to submit everything to my gallery just to have it available as a print.

I know a guy who uses DA for pro printing work and he submits his images with a "thumbnail" image saying "PRINT PROOF" and uploads the real image as the source so that the public doesn't see the real image. And he sets the prices extremely high so that no one orders them (he still pays the artist rate which is about cost). Seems like a lot of work though.

lightwell 04-08-2008 02:28 AM

Hi Edward,

I would say the advice from mordecaidesign as well as that from the print bureau about investing in a good quality inkjet is pretty sound advice. I have been using an epson 1290 for the past four years and it has been providing consistently good results though is starting to show its age now and sometimes leaves marks on A3 prints. I am looking into getting a replacement and will most likely go with another epson, though one with seperate colour ink cartridges. One important thing to note about printers is that in a very short time you will end up having spent more on ink cartridges than you did on the original printer.

Space-sprayer,"pain in the ass"? Thought you were supposed to be from Yorkshire!!


nickmarshallvfx 04-08-2008 05:52 AM


Space-sprayer,"pain in the ass"? Thought you were supposed to be from Yorkshire!!
Haha, sorry Jim, just edited myself for easier cultural crossover ;)


Natsu 04-13-2008 02:45 PM

Forgive this silly question that's coming, but I'm new on everything related to professional work.

Erm... What do you need prints for? Yep, I know it sounds stupid, but I thought that you sent your images to the editorials, and they managed them. I mean, do you sell printed works? Or do you use them to send paper portfolios to editorials? I thought nowadays everything was electronic and web-based. But some of you even work with professional printers, such as high format EPSON printers. And I just wondered what do you use those printings for.

It's because I asked for government economic help to start my career as an illustrator (I'll have to give it back in taxes, but they help you with the equipment to allow you to start), and I wonder if I should include a professional printer in the package, or go for other stuff.

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