Frequently Asked Questions at www.saponaro.com
Original Works of Art, Fine Art Prints and Limited Editions

1. Why are giclèes so 'true' to the image of an original work of art?

2. Are prints ever considered 'true originals'? What is the difference between 'fine art graphics' and your giclèe limited editions?

3. What's the difference between an artist proof and the other prints? What assurance do I have I am receiving a 'true' limited edition?

4. What consideration should be given to hanging prints? I understand they can fade in direct sunlight.

5. Does the existence of limited editions alter the value of the original? Can I produce limited editions if I own an original work of art?

6. Why do you produce these print portfolios if you already create 'original' prints?

7. I love a particular image of yours, but it is too big for my hanging space.

8. Can I get a limited edition of an original, even if your web site does not indicate a 'giclèe' is available?

9. What do you mean by 'mixed media'?

10. Your web site includes many different subjects; are the landscapes your most current?

11. Can you create a painting of a particular image just for me?

12. I would like to purchase one or more of your works, but my pocketbook is limited. Can you accommodate the beginning collector?


1. Why are giclèes so 'true' to the image of an original work of art?

The literal translation of giclèe (pronounced "zhee-clay") is from the French word meaning "that which is sprayed by a nozzle." The print resolutions are 1,440 to 1800 dpi (dots per square inch) which is a much higher dpi than other printing processes. The ink is applied at a rate of 4-5 million ink droplets per second. This continuous-tone technology provides a wider range of color than traditional serigraphy or lithography, resulting in higher contrast and intense color with a paint-like quality that holds meticulous detail and high, but subtle, tints and blends. Since there is no 'dot pattern' registering on the eye, and the overall appearance and quality of the image is enhanced. The ability to print on a wide range of fine art papers, canvas and photographic quality paper is a critical component of this process.

2. Are prints ever considered 'true originals'? What is the difference between your 'fine arts graphics' and your giclèe limited editions?

I often receive requests to hand-embellish the print. My limited edition prints are produced on archival quality papers comparable to my originals, and so I can create a one-of-a-kind limited edition, which can be considered an 'original'. The hand-working on the piece substantially increases the value and offers the collector another level of selection to my body of artwork.

Fine art graphics or prints are created by the artist. They are hand-pulled on small presses in very small editions. Primarily I create copperplate etchings, monoprints, and chine collés (etchings which have an addition of fine art papers, generally of Japanese origin, incorporated directly onto the plate). Giclèes are carefully produced from high-resolution photographic images, such as large format slides or digital scans, which are carefully color-balanced through closely working with the printer.

3. What's the difference between an artist proof and the other prints? What assurance do I have I am receiving a 'true' limited edition?

Many artists do not limit giclèe production. I don't subscribe to this school of thought; my pieces are limited to 125 fine prints and 10 Artist Proofs. The proofs can be described as 'test-runs' to make sure the color, resolution, and quality of the print meets the quality of the original. Many collectors prefer AP's since they contain elements not present in the final prints. The numbered limited editions are the approved or finalized prints that compose the edition. Generally an artist proof will carry a minimum ten percent (10%) premium and usually are part of the hand-worked editions.

All my portfolio work is produced, certified, and signed by me only.

4. What consideration should be given to hanging prints? I understand they can fade in direct sunlight.

Certain inks and colors (like blue) tend to be very 'fugitive' or susceptible to fading. The inks used in my giclèe print portfolio have been tested by the Wilheim Image Research Institute with the following results for stability: Concord and Arches substrates have a 32-36 year register before any noticeable fading is detected. The overall 'life' of these inks are 100 - 120 years.

My limited editions are produced on Concord Neutral or Bright White Substrate so you can be highly assured the UV impact will be minimal, particularly if your windows have additional protection/filtration. Since the quality of the paper (lignin, acid-free construction) is as important as the ink used, be certain the work is framed with compatible [once again, acid-fee] mats and support, such as foam core. More damage is done by paper-to-paper acid burn than sun damage, often.

5. Does the existence of limited editions alter the value of the original? Can I produce limited editions if I own an original work of art?

Once a limited edition has been created from an original, the value of the original is increased.

No, it is an infringement to reproduce an artist's image without their express permission. The 'copyright' © of an art image stays with the artist (unless the work has been contracted as 'work for hire' and the artist and patron agree, in writing, that the copyright belongs to the commissioner of the work.) Generally 'work for hire' commissions carry a higher purchase price for this reason.

6. Why do you produce these print portfolios if you already create 'original' prints?

The main reason I created the "Great Basin Landscape" portfolio is the high sales-rate of my originals, which are very complex and time-consuming. I have not been able to produce enough work to satisfy my clients. In the past five years I have created over forty landscapes and, to date, only eight are available. Naturally certain images generate more interest, so these have been chosen for my limited editions.

7. I love a particular image of yours, but it is too big for my hanging space.

Most of my works are large 'full-sheet' images (approximately 22" x 30") or larger. The process of digital reproduction used in giclèe prints allows the creation of smaller or larger proportional images. Inquiries for 'custom sizing' can be accommodated.

8. Can I get a limited edition of an original, even if your web site does not indicate a 'giclèe' is available?

The giclèe process allows me to produce a limited edition of almost any of my images. What determines whether I produce a giclèe is whether the work 'proofs' to the standard of the original image. I work in 'mixed media' and so my originals have a great deal of surface texture; sometimes this doesn't allow for a suitable reproduction.

9. What do you mean by 'mixed media'?

I have developed a signature use of mixed media that includes numerous mediums applied in progressive states. When I begin a painting, I do not necessarily work from sketches, but go directly to the 'canvas'. This can be a carefully prepared substrate of hardboard or standard stretched cotton canvas, but I usually work on 300 pound watercolor paper, which is very heavy.

The initial image is sketched out with pastel, watercolor pencil, or charcoal. Subsequent layers of color and construction are added by using acrylics, oil paints, or oil sticks, watercolor washes and overlays of gouache (an opaque watercolor,) hard, soft, and oil pastels, contè crayons, color pencils, and may include texturing of pumice with colored gesso. Often glazes of oil or acrylics are laid in as a last step to 'unify' areas of the composition.

I may also include a collage technique of fine hand-made papers or computer generated images from my work which are printed on archival quality paper and applied to the surface. The hardboard compositions are finished with "Clayboard", a non-yellowing, relatively impervious sealant or finishing spray which requires no glazing, or glass, much like pure oil paintings.

10. Your web site includes many different subjects; are the landscapes your most current?

I have worked primarily in three series. My "Some Women", "Amerika/Black Dog" and "Great Basin Landscapes" primarily compose my subject matter: these are non-realist, interpretive images with a concentration of color and high graphic composition. I continue to develop all my series but I am currently concentrating on the 'women' and 'landscapes'.

11. Can you create a painting of a particular image just for me?

I do accept commissions. You can e-mail me to discuss the particulars.

12. I would like to purchase one or more of your works, but my pocketbook is limited. Can you accommodate the beginning collector?

Generally a COD shipment is arranged, but I am pleased to work with a client who wishes to set up a 'lay away' agreement. One-fourth of the total purchase price is required as a down payment. Then, based on the price or the number of pieces in the purchase, I arrange for subsequent monthly payments. All payments are non-refundable; there is no tax involved in out-of-state shipments. Please e-mail me for specific information.

 


copyright© 2002 by Paula Saponaro