Art Prints At Home: printer/software/paper

I am in no way an authority on any of this - I am just a beginner myself. However, if you are a TOTAL beginner on step 1, it is sometimes helpful to hear from someone who is at step 2.

This is what I slowly pieced together this month about making art prints at home. This post will cover

1. Printer

2. Software

3. Paper

My first print made at home!

1. Printer

  • Canon PIXMA PRO-10

  • TEN ink tanks

  • Archival ink - which means even in 200 years it won't fade.

  • When I sell enough prints to justify an upgrade: I'm coming for something even better, the Canon Pro 1000)

2. Software

  • If you are working digitally, set the canvas to at least 300 dpi. This is super important because you can not adjust this after you create your artwork. Save as TIFF or PNG.

  • If you are creating in an RGB color mode, you will need to export your image into a different program to be in CMYK format for printing. I definitely notice a difference, especially in the reds/pinks. I downloaded Affinity Designer for iPad which is around 20 dollars with PLENTY of quality online tutorials. (If you are exporting from Procreate to Affinity Designer to print, this video by Ipad Calligraphy on YouTube is super helpful.)

  • Printing App: I use Lightroom Classic to format and print my images. I can do a tutorial on this soon.

  • ICC Profiles: Color profiles are basically bits of software/code that communicate with your printer about color management depending on ink/printer/type of paper. I have read so much on this topic (here is a good start) and it is still a bit overwhelming. The Paper I used (Moab Paper) had a list of ICC profiles to use on their website organized by paper type and printer - but my printer was not listed! There were various websites to download ICC profiles - but to be honest - I am still just beginning to learn about how to use ICC profiles to my advantage. Your best bet is to look up profiles specific to the paper you are using!

3. Paper:

You are going to want to research GSM and paperweight. Look for archival, acid free paper. Here is a list I found helpful. So far, I have experimented with Premium staples photo paper, Moab Entrada Rag Bright, and matte sticker paper. I LOVE the Moab paper, even though it is 1-2 dollars per sheet depending on what kind you choose.

For my space art, I find that Canon Luster paper looks best, as the sky gets sparkly and shimmery.

That is all for now! I am a beginner at so many things right now - so I will be back to share soon.