At Black Parrot we work with some of our favourite Australian artists to produce and sell limited edition giclee prints.
We decided to embrace giclee technology when we realised that it doesn't just produce amazingly detailed and nuanced reproductions of one-off, handmade paintings and drawings. It also enables artists to change the scale of works and to re-present their work in new ways and with radiant colours. When we saw the flexibility of giclee printing together with the archival stability of the prints (that is, how long then will last, without fading or changing) we figured we'd be crazy not to start making some.
Giclee is a kind of digital printing technology, but our prints are very different to the prints you might see at Officeworks: The paper is different; the inks are very different; the printer itself is about 10 times the size, and the digital file we use is also many times bigger than any file you are likely to have in your computer.
We use a German-built, Cruse scanning system to capture artworks at over 400 mega-pixels. Remember when a one mega-pixel camera was exciting? Most professional cameras now have about 20 megapixels. To get the quality we require we use a machine about the size of delivery van. We then use a 12 colour Canon Lucia ex printer, which has 3 times the number of colours as a normal printer and uses pigmented inks rather than dyes. Dyes are relatively dull and tend to fade over time, whereas our specialist pigmented inks have a much greater density of colour and should remain unchanged for over a century. Finally, we print on 310 gsm, Canson Photographique paper, which is acid free and also ensures that our prints don't deteriorate.
When anyone sees our giclee prints up-close they are always blown away by the quality of the work, the density of the colours and the detail of the image. Of course there is no way we can show you this quality of the internet, so we are always ready to welcome visitors at Black Parrot HQ or at one of our pop-up exhibitions. Just give us a call on 0425 363 472 to make a time.
The video below was made by an artist in the US, but it gives a pretty clear explanation of giclee technology.