Four companies prove the profits of fine-art printing.
Final output is on Robison’s Epson Stylus Pro 11880 64-inch inkjet printer. He uses a range of media at Sacred Earth, including: Epson Enhanced Matte paper for proofing; Epson Signature Worthy Cold Press and Hot Press Natural Paper; Epson Signature Worthy Matte paper; IJ Technologies Matte Canvas (both coated with Lexjet's Sunset Gloss varnish); Photo-tex for wall murals and adhesive graphics; Lexjet Satin Cloth for scrolls and wall hangings; and Epson Premium Luster 260 paper for photographic prints.
For his fine-art work, Robison steers away from using the terms ‘giclée’ or ‘pigment print.’ Instead, he prefers “Ultrachrome Prints.” “I think the word ‘inkjet’ cheapens the product and makes the average consumer think they can print that quality at home, and the word giclée is mostly associated with inkjet prints on canvas only,” Robison says. “Ultrachrome describes the type of ink used, and I think it’s similar terminology to darkroom printing – fiber-based, chromagenic, Cibachrome.”
Gallery Street: Mastering giclée
Marc Leftoff comes from a wide-format printing industry background. In 1994, he ran a company producing tradeshow graphics and signs. “But Gallery Street (gallerystreet.com) was founded and created for the art market exclusively,” says the president/owner. “We went after artists originally when the pigment inkset entered the market and knew there was a high demand for this. Artists have always been our target market.”
The 13-year-old business based in Roswell, Georgia, focuses on digital capture, color management, giclée printing, liquid varnish, and canvas stretching. “We produce giclée prints and call them giclées,” says Leftoff. “But if a piece was shot by us, color managed by us, and printed and varnished by us, it gets the name Masterpiece Giclée which we have trademarked. It just means it’s as good as it gets in color, sharpness, density, accuracy, and longevity.”
For digital capture, Gallery Street uses its Epson Expression tabloid flatbed scanners as well as a scan-back camera with a Cambo large-format body and Rodenstock Lenses. “We have an incredible digital-capture system: the BetterLight Super 8K 4x5 scan back camera/scanner that produces files of such extreme resolution that we have been known to scan things like granite, wood, and fabrics for the textile industry,” says Leftoff. The shop also prints regularly for photographers and digital artists who provide their own digital files.