Using printers for canvas is a great way for artists who want to recreate original artworks and limited edition art.
There are a number of home printers for canvas to make one-off canvas prints.
Using a printer for canvas is a profitable revenue source for many artists. Most printers for canvas allow artists like you the ability to create high-quality canvas prints you can command high prices for.
Turn your art, whether traditionally made or digital, into fine art quality reproductions. But before you start, you need to buy a printer that will ensure bright and true color that showcases your work.
Luckily, there are a number of smaller printers perfect for printing at home.
What makes a great printer for canvas?
When you want as close to real replication of the original artwork as possible, it’s essential the canvas printer can produce realistic color and sharp image results. The main factors in this are the types of ink you use to print. When if comes to printing on canvas the two types of printer inks are Latex and Eco-Solvent.
Types of printers for canvas
Canvas printers print with different types of ink. The types of printers for canvas include inkjet, latex, and eco solvent.
Latex and eco solvent canvas printers typically have a starting price of $7000+ USD. They’re mostly in use by large print shops.
In order to print your art at home on canvas you’ll want to stick to an inkjet printer for canvas. The printers are more affordable, have less maintenance, and the ink is cheaper.
Types of canvas to print on
Since you want to print fine art reproductions expect to pay a bit more for a premium, water-resistant, acid-free canvas. This will offer added longevity and more durability. Optionally, with a water-resistant inkjet canvas, you can add a water-based clear coat to protect your inkjet canvas prints. The clearcoat can be rolled or sprayed on to seal the print surface and extend its resistance to UV light.
What type of print surface will best enhance your images?
A visible canvas texture can affect the look of the image. If you are reproducing soft, impressionistic paintings originally painted on a textured art canvas, then you’ll want the canvas print to replicate the same textured surface.
But if you are printing photographs on canvas, you’ll probably prefer a smooth canvas. This way all the fine details aren’t hidden by a roughly textured canvas surface.
The canvas texture is determined from how the canvas is woven. The ratio of the weave (1:1 or 2:1) refers to the number of threads running vertically and horizontally. Typically, a 2:1 weave offers more texture.
However, texture also depends on the diameter of the threads. Such as how tightly the threads are woven and the thickness of the coating used to protect the printed image.
How to know which type of canvas will work best with your art?
If most of the images you reproduce have deep blacks and shadow, choose a canvas with a high Dmax. Images with bright, vivid colors reproduce better on a bright-white canvas with a semi-gloss or gloss surface.
Matte canvas surfaces perfect for photographs because they don’t reflect glare. Matte canvases are also more versatile. Meaning, if you want your print to have a semi-gloss or glossy look, you can apply a semi-gloss or gloss clearcoat when you finish printing.
Recommended printers for canvas
The printers below are shown from least expensive to most expensive. Offering the best value in each print size range.
Canon Pixma IX6820 Wireless Business Printer ($130)
The Canon Pixma range of printers offer the best quality for the cheaper price. The Pixma IX6820 is the lowest cost from the other printers for canvas. This prints up to up to 13″ x 19″.
Canon PIXMA Pro-100 Wireless Color Professional Inkjet Printer ($298)
Slightly more expensive than the IX6820, the Pixma Pro-100 is also able to print up to 13″ x 19″. The only difference is the Pixma Pro-100 uses a more archival dye based ink system. Another great printer to get your start with.
Epson SureColor P600 Inkjet Printer ($690)
This Epson SureColor P600 prints on rolls 19″ wide using 8 ink cartridges. A great option if you would like to start offering prints larger than the common 13″ x 19″ size.
HP Designjet T120 Inkjet Large Format Printer ($799)
The HP Designjet T120 offers a great price for being able to print on rolls up to 24″ wide on rolls of canvas.
Canon ImagePROGRAF Inkjet Printer with Sub-ink Tank System
For those of you who wish to print your art on canvas rolls up to 36″ wide, the Canon ImageProGraf offers up the best value for its size capabilities.
Final thoughts on printers for canvas
Before you make your decision to purchase a printer, note how much the ink cartridges are. These aren’t your normal at home printers which only have a black ink cartridge and a color ink cartridge.
Some of the printers for canvas here have up to 8 ink cartridges. So when you’re making prints of your art, you’ll be going through ink much faster than you think. So keep into account, you’ll be buying ink fairly often depending on how many prints you’re making.
What’s great about making your own prints is that you can make them as orders come in. Covering your costs along the way. Also, because you’re printing on your own, you’ll no longer have to pay for minimum orders of 100 or 500+ prints when you hire a traditional printer to make your fine art prints.
And yes, these printers also work for normal fine art paper as well.
Once you have the ability to make to high quality prints on canvas at home, you will have a whole new way to sell art online.
I recommend offering limited-edition print runs to raise the value of your prints. There are some key strategies behind selling your fine art prints. Which is an art form all on it’s own.
Sell your art online
No matter how weird or “niche” you think your art is, you can make art sales online. Find inspiration and get started with this 5 day email training.