How to make art prints at home (A step-by-step guide)

Making art prints at home gives you total control over your art, from the type of paper to the quality of ink.

You can opt for glossy prints if you're into photography and want those vibrant colors to pop.

On the other hand, matte prints are your go-to for art pieces, offering an elegant, understated vibe.

The best part? You can experiment all you want.

Want to make a limited edition series? Go for it.

Prefer to keep it open and print as many as you like? That works too.

So, whether you're looking to share your art with the world or just make some extra cash, making prints at home is a fantastic way to do it.

Making prints at home is easier to achieve than you might think.

So, why should you care about making prints at home?

For starters, it's a brilliant way to make your art accessible to a broader audience without parting with your cherished originals.

Plus, it's a savvy move for anyone looking to turn their passion into profit.

Why Make Prints at Home?

You know that feeling when you've poured so much time and effort into a piece, and it turns out just the way you envisioned?

The thought of parting with it can be as tough as saying goodbye to an old friend.

Making prints at home allows you to share that emotional connection with others, without having to let go of your original masterpiece.

Also, not everyone can afford to buy original art, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't be able to enjoy it.

Making prints at home opens up a world of possibilities. It's a win-win situation: art lovers get to own a piece of your creativity without breaking the bank, and you get to reach a broader audience.

Glossy or Matte Prints

Should you go glossy or matte?

Let's dive deep into this conundrum and break it down.


They're the go-to for photographic prints because they make colors burst off the page and give your images a shiny, almost reflective finish.

If you're printing photos, especially those with vibrant hues and deep contrasts, glossy is your go-to.

If you're a photographer or simply love that high-impact, vibrant look, glossy should be your choice for making prints at home.

It's particularly effective for images that have a lot of contrast or a wide spectrum of colors.

The glossy finish can make these elements pop, giving your prints a professional, eye-catching appearance.


They're generally the choice for art prints, especially when you're aiming to replicate the texture and feel of the original artwork.
Matte prints lack the shiny finish that glossy ones have, but they more than make up for it with their elegant, understated aesthetic.

If you're focused on making art prints at home, matte is usually the way to go.

It mimics the look and feel of original artworks and has the added advantage of not reflecting light. This makes it easier to appreciate the art from various angles without the glare you'd get from a glossy print.

How to Make Art Prints at Home (Step-By-Step)

Before you hit that ‘print' button, there are a few steps you need to follow to make sure your prints come out as stunning as your original art.

1. Digitizing Your Art

Before you can even think about making prints, you've got to digitize that beautiful piece of yours.

Grab a high-quality scanner and capture a digital copy of your artwork.

If your art is too big for the scanner, you can scan it in sections or take a digital photograph of it with even lighting.

The key here is to get a high-resolution image that does justice to your original work.

2. Editing

Once you've got that digital copy, it's time to roll up your sleeves and start editing.

Use a photo editing program like Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Lightroom to fine-tune the colors, adjust the colors, crop the edges, and even fix the resolution to make sure your prints at home come out crisp and clear, remove any little blemishes, and make sure it's absolutely perfect.

This step is crucial for making prints at home that you'll be proud to share.

3. Choosing the Right Printer and Paper

Now we're getting to the exciting part—making those prints at home!

But hold your horses; not just any printer will do.

You'll need a high-quality printer that can handle pigment-based inks.

Your regular office printer just won't cut it if you're aiming for top-notch fine art prints.

If you're on the hunt for a top-notch printer to create stunning prints at home, I'd highly recommend the Canon Pixma Pro-100.

I personally use this gem for my art prints, and it's a game-changer. It's particularly excellent for digital art, delivering colors that are vivid and true to life. It offers larger print sizes—up to 13″ x 19″, ideal for art prints.

What sets it apart is its archival dye-based ink system, ensuring your prints stand the test of time without fading.

When it comes to paper, I swear by the Hahnemühle brand for both paper and canvas.

(5 Best Printers for Artists)

4. Start Printing

Once you've got the right printer and your edited, high-res digital copy, you're all set to make prints at home. Load up some quality paper, hit that ‘print' button, and watch as your digital art transforms into a tangible masterpiece.

Pros and Cons of Making Prints at Home

Let's talk about the ups and downs of making prints at home.


  1. Long-term Investment: If you're in it for the long haul, investing in the equipment to make prints at home can be a wise financial decision. You'll have everything you need at your fingertips, whenever inspiration strikes.
  2. Complete Control: Ah, the sweet feeling of control. You get to oversee every aspect of the printing process, from the type of paper to the quality of ink. No surprises, just your art, your way.
  3. No Minimum Orders: You know those times when you just want to test out how a print would look? No pressure here. Make one print or a hundred; it's entirely up to you.


  1. Initial Costs: Brace yourself; the initial setup can be a bit pricey. We're talking about a quality printer, archival inks, and don't forget the paper. But hey, consider it an investment in your art business.
  2. Time and Effort: Making prints at home isn't just a press-the-button-and-voila kind of deal. It takes time to get everything just right, from color calibration to print settings. But then again, what's art without a little sweat and tears?
  3. Quality Control: This one's a double-edged sword. While you have control over the process, it also means you're responsible for the quality. It might take a few tries to get everything perfect.

Limited Editions vs. Open Editions: The Art of Making Prints at Home

Both have their merits, and it really comes down to what you're looking to achieve.

Limited Editions

  1. Higher Pricing Potential: Limited editions have that “get it before it's gone” vibe, allowing you to price them higher. People are willing to pay a premium for something they know is rare.
  2. Easier to Sell: The scarcity factor works wonders here. When there are only a handful of prints available, they become hot commodities. It's the basic law of supply and demand, my friends.
  3. Increased Value Over Time: As the edition sells out, the value of each print can increase. It's like your art is maturing, like a fine wine.
  4. Psychological Appeal: There's something about owning something limited that makes us feel special, doesn't it? It's like being part of an exclusive club, and who doesn't want that?

Open Editions

  1. Lower Price Point: Making open edition prints at home means you can offer them at a more accessible price. This opens the door to a wider audience who can now afford to own a piece of your art.
  2. Unlimited Earning Potential: Since there's no cap on how many you can sell, the sky's the limit when it comes to earning potential. Keep making those prints at home, and watch the dollars roll in.
  3. Less Pressure: With open editions, there's less urgency to get everything perfect on the first go. You can tweak and adjust as you make more prints at home, learning as you go.
  4. Broad Appeal: Open editions are great for those pieces that resonate with a wide audience. They're the crowd-pleasers, the ones that everyone wants a piece of.

Pricing Your Prints: The Art of Making Money from Your Art

Open Editions vs. Limited Editions

First things first, you've got to decide whether you're going for open editions or limited editions.

Open editions are great because you can print as many as you want, whenever you want. This is fantastic for those just starting out or those with a large audience size.

Limited editions, on the other hand, are like the VIP of the art world. You only make a certain number, and once they're gone, they're gone. This scarcity can drive up the price and make them more desirable. Psychologically, people love owning something that's limited; it makes them feel special.

So, if you're looking to earn more, limited editions might be the way to go.

The Art of Pricing

When it comes to pricing, you've got to consider a few things.

First, your production costs. If you're making prints at home, factor in the cost of ink, paper, and any other materials.

Then, think about your time. How long does it take you to make one print? Time is money, friends.

Also, consider your audience size. Different art launch strategies work for different audience sizes. If you have a large following, you might be able to price your prints a bit higher.

But remember, prints should generally be more affordable than your original pieces.