Art Prints Explained

Understanding Art Prints: A Beginner's Guide

Art prints are an affordable and accessible way to bring beautiful art into your home. Whether you're a seasoned art collector or just starting to explore the world of art, prints offer a way to enjoy the work of your favorite artists without breaking the bank. In this beginner's guide, we'll discuss the basics of art prints, including what they are, how they're made, and what to look for when purchasing them.

What are Art Prints?

Art prints are reproductions of original artwork, created using various printing techniques. They are typically created in limited editions, with each print numbered and signed by the artist. Prints can be made from a variety of materials, including paper, canvas, metal, and more.

How are Art Prints Made?

There are several different printing techniques used to create art prints, each with its own unique characteristics. Here are a few of the most common techniques:

  • Lithography: This technique involves using a flat stone or metal plate to transfer an image onto paper or another surface. The image is created using a special ink that is water-repellent, so it adheres only to the areas of the plate that have been treated with a special solution.

  • Screen Printing: Screen printing involves using a stencil to transfer ink onto a surface. The stencil is placed on top of the surface, and ink is then pushed through the stencil using a squeegee.

  • Giclee: Giclee prints are created using high-quality inkjet printers, which produce a high-resolution image with vibrant colors and sharp details.

What to Look for When Purchasing Art Prints

When purchasing art prints, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure you're getting a high-quality piece. Here are a few tips:

  • Look for prints that are numbered and signed by the artist. This indicates that the print is part of a limited edition and has been approved by the artist.

  • Consider the quality of the paper or other material the print is made on. High-quality materials will help ensure the print looks great and lasts for years to come.

  • Pay attention to the printing technique used. Some techniques, such as giclee printing, produce higher-quality prints than others.

  • Consider the size of the print and how it will fit into your space. Larger prints can make a bold statement, while smaller prints can be grouped together for a more eclectic look.


Art prints offer a great way to bring beautiful artwork into your home without breaking the bank. By understanding the basics of art prints, including how they're made and what to look for when purchasing them, you can build a collection of prints that reflects your personal style and tastes. So next time you're in the market for some new art, consider adding a few prints to your collection!