What is Giclée?
Giclée is a French word derived from gicleur which means nozzle or jet, and in fine art printing it refers to the process of making art prints using an inkjet printer. However there is much more to it than just hooking up an inkjet printer and pressing Print. All my prints have been produced using pigmented inks which offer a longevity of up to 150 years, using the Epson Ultrachrome K3 inkjet set. The entire process takes place in a colour managed workflow that ensures reproducibility and accuracy. The process includes producing custom colour profiles for the viewing screen, working in a neutral tone environment, producing printer profiles that match the ink set and paper combination to what is seen on the screen. Printing is made via a Raster Image Processor (RIP) to provide smooth tonal transitions and prevent metamerism.
What’s the difference between Giclée and archival inkjet?
Very little. Both prints are produced using exactly the same process as described above. the difference is in the substrate used for creating the prints. Purists will claim that a true Giclée print should be printed on a watercolour type paper, and anything else cannot be considered a Giclée print. I have chosen to adopt this point of view (to avoid upsetting the purists) even though there are plenty of people out there claiming that other types of prints are Giclée, and so I refer to all other type of prints not printed on a watercolour paper as Archival Inkjet prints. For Giclée printing I use a Photorag paper, and for all others I use Photorag Pearl papers. These artist papers are made of 100% cotton or pure alpha cellulose and are manufactured with a premium inkjet coating to ensure colour reproducibility and print longevity.
Using this process guarantees the consistency of every print, and allows for the greatest life expectancy. Once you have your print you should check how to care for Giclée prints.