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What Are the Different Types of Fine Art Reproductions?

Jami Yontz
Jami Yontz

There are many type of fine art reproductions available, although each reproduction process is different and produces an image that usually looks different from the original artwork. Fine art reproduction printing includes giclees, lithographs, and prints. Artworks can also be printed on canvas or etching paper. Artagraphs and serigraphs are also popular fine art reproduction methods. All of these methods allow consumers to purchase his or her favorite artwork or high-quality decoration pieces for showcase in the home or office.

Giclee is a type of fine art reproductions printing process that produces a high quality print. The artwork is scanned and then printed onto canvas, photo paper, paper, vinyl, or another surface. The ink-jet printers use archival quality paints to create an image that is smooth, meaning the small dots created by traditional printers cannot be seen. Giclee reproductions use a wider range of colors than some other printing technologies, and the paint will resist fading for many years. By using ink jet printers, artists and manufacturers can produce on-demand prints, and they can change the size of the print as necessary.

A lithograph of cockatoos.
A lithograph of cockatoos.

Lithographs are created by drawing a mirror image of the artwork onto metal plates using a crayon or greasy substance. Ink is then rolled over the plate, attaching only to the crayon outline that was created. Pressure is placed upon a piece of paper or material that covers the drawing, which transfers the images to a sheet of paper. This fine art reproductions process is repeated using different metal drawings to add in red, blue, and yellow.

Artagraph fine art reproductions appeal to some people because the technology used to print the artwork recreates the image, colors, and texture of the original painting. A laser scanner is used to identify and replicate the original colors used in the painting. The oils created using this technology are applied to the painting’s surface, and then a silicone mold made from the original artwork is laid on top of the painting. After this, the artwork is baked at a high temperature. This process produces artworks that replicate the look and feel of the original, but are expensive to both produce and purchase.

Serigraphs, also known as screen prints, are created using a process where a thin screen is placed upon a sheet of paper. A stencil has been created in the screen, and the artist, using a ink brush or squeegee, pushes ink back and forth across the screen. Each color in the painting requires that a new screen be created and certain areas of the screen have to be blocked to prevent the color from transferring. These can be reproduced using the same screens originally created, but the process must be repeated for each artwork.

Discussion Comments


@Iluviaporos - I think you'd be fairly safe to rely on a reproduction of some of Van Gogh's work or maybe Monet or someone like that. Picasso is a bit more controversial, but there are some of his works that most people enjoy.

Or you could just get a voucher and let the person decide what kind of art they want for themselves. They might prefer a canvas print, or fine art photography or something like that.


@Iluviaporos - I think giving people art is always a good thing to do if you know them well enough to guess right. Although I like to look for prints of fine art on the internet by independent artists. They usually aren't very expensive but there is some gorgeous work out there.

And there is such a big range of it, you can always find something suitable. Even if you don't know much about the person or their taste in art, you can always rely on some other love, like Star Wars or golf and use that as a theme. Although I'm not sure if anyone would described themed art like that as "fine art".


I remember when I was a teenager, my boyfriend gave me a couple of famous art reproductions as a going away gift when we both went to different colleges.

I think one of them might have been The Howl and the other one was that painting of the melting clocks. I was so completely touched by the fact that he had picked something like that because it made me feel like he thought I was smart enough to enjoy them.

I mean, I had no clue about art back then so I barely recognized the paintings as famous, but it was still a really cool gift.

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    • A lithograph of cockatoos.
      By: GCPabloImages
      A lithograph of cockatoos.