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Is there any difference between Giclée prints and canvas prints?

According to Wikipedia Giclée printing means inkjet printing.  

The term Giclée was coined by Jack Duganne in 1991. It originally applied to fine art prints which were done on Iris printers, but it has since come to mean any print done on an inkjet printer. Although printers, galleries and artists use the term Giclée to imply “fine art printing”, there is no guarantee of quality that goes with the word. The truth is anyone who does inkjet printing (including Eziprint) technically does Giclée printing.

A Giclée canvas print ideally should be a print that is done on high quality canvas (usually pure cotton not polycotton). It is done with an inkjet printer. The resolution should be high. The inks should be good quality and fade resistant. (Eziprint does canvas prints that meet all of these criteria). Put simply, a Giclée canvas print is a high quality print using the best practice and the best quality printer, canvas and ink that is available.

Giclée is derived from the French word gicler which means “to squirt or spray”. It does not refer to only canvas printing but also to art reproductions on paper.

Creating Giclee prints from photos or artwork is a common way for artists and photographers to reproduce their artwork. Because the prints are a very close replica of the original art, they can be distributed or sold so that the art can be enjoyed by many people.


At Eziprint we use Canon inkjet 12 colour printers. We check and calibrate our printing machine regularly. We use quality inks. We also use quality white cotton matt canvas that weights 430gsm. We lacquer our prints to protect them from dust and UV rays. Every photo we print as a canvas, is viewed by our trained technicians and checked at every step of the process. We believe we truly do produce a Giclee canvas print.


Other articles that may interest you:

  • What difference does canvas weight make?
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How to Make an LED Light-up Canvas Print

LED light-up canvas prints are simple and easy to make.

1. Pick a picture that has light features in it such as the fireflies in the picture above, or the Christmas lights in the picture below.

2.  Get your picture made into a canvas print with a boxline (35mm deep) frame. This is where Eziprint comes in.

3. Get a string of small LED lights. You can buy them at places like Mitre 10 or various light shops. They come with either a battery pack or a plug-in lead.  For $5 Eziprint can also supply a 2 meter long copper wire and LED light set, with a battery pack. It is suitable for a canvas from approximately 203mm x 304mm (8 inches x 12 inches) up to 304mm x 406mm (12 x 16 inches). One set of batteries will last about 48 hours if running non-stop.

4. Hold the canvas up to the light with the back facing you. This way you will be able to see where the light features are (such as the Christmas lights in the picture below). Use a pencil to mark where these light features are.

5. Tape the LED lights to the back of the canvas, over the areas you marked with your pencil. Double sided sticky tape is good for this purpose, or even Sellotape.

Now turn off the house lights, turn on your LED lights, and enjoy your handiwork!

If you want to get adventurous, use different coloured lights such as pink or blue to create a different effect.

Note: If you would like to try this activity, Eziprint can supply the two pictures shown, complete with a battery powered string of LED lights. Just go to our “Art Supplies” page to order.

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What difference does canvas weight make?

High quality canvas printing
430gsm canvas on a slimline 18mm frame

Canvas prints can be done on different weights of canvas. The weight rating is referred to as Grams Per Square meter or gsm. If you are looking at getting a canvas made, there should be a canvas weight shown such as 120gsm, 380gsm or 430gsm etc. There is also Faux Canvas.

Let’s discuss Faux Canvas first. The online Etymology Dictionary 2010 says Faux is a French word that means false. Faux Canvas is (as it’s name suggests) not canvas at all. It is a product made from a paper-like material that is prepared in a way that makes it look like canvas. It does not have the same properties as canvas and, as it is a paper product, it does not last long term.
For art or prints that you want to keep for a long time, this product is not suitable.

Canvas suitable for prints or art is made from cotton,linen or poly-cotton (which is a blend of polyester and cotton). Canvas printing is usually done on either cotton or poly-cotton. All canvas has a weight rating which says how heavy the fabric is. Basically the heavier the canvas weight, the more strength and durability it has, therefore the better it will last.

If you want a print that will look good long term, then you should use a heavy weight canvas. Premium canvas prints are usually done on canvas that weighs over 400gsm. Photographers and artists usually prefer to print on this weight canvas as it not only lasts longer, but also adds a look and feels of quality to their finished artwork. Another advantage of heavier weight canvas is that it holds it’s shape when it is stretched over a large frame to create a big canvas print. A light weight canvas that is stretched over a large frame can sag and stretch over time.

For a rough measure of standard, a print done on canvas that weighs 400gsm or higher is high quality; a print done on 300gsm to 400gsm is about mid-range; and a print done on 180gsm to 300gsm is in the lower quality range. Anything printed on canvas 120gsm and less is poor quality.

The reason canvas that weighs 120gsm or less is rated as poor quality is that it is relatively easy to rip, puncture or otherwise damage. I would not recommend it for any sized canvas print except perhaps a very small one. Unfortunately some print companies do use this weight as it is cheaper to buy. If you are getting a canvas print made and there is nothing on their website, or in their shop, to tell you the weight of the canvas, then it is a case of “buyer beware”.