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From today we have introduced new service which allows to opt for a printed proof before proceeding with printed full scale canvas. It is a very good option when colour reproduction is crucial or you need to  assess final quality of your photo on canvas. Other good reasons may also be if you require larger amounts of the same canvas - we recently did over 100 copies of the same image (!). With any larger orders (over £250) we offer this service for free. For smaller orders the cost is £8 and this is just to cover our costs with printing & sending the proofs. As a standard we will produce and send two A4 sheets - one will show the whole image scaled to fit - this will give general overview of how the colours from your image has been reproduced. Second page will contain a section from your image printed at your chosen size. This will be a perfect way of assessing if the resolution of your photo printed on canvas is satisfactory. If after seeing the proofs you would like to make some amends subsequent proofs will be sent free (up to a maximum of 3 proofs). I believe we will surely be able to co-operate to help you get the exact effect that you desire. As a standard proofs are printed on the same media you have selected for your canvas. There is also an option that we can produce the proofs on other media i.e. you have chosen Standard canvas but would also like to see the proof on Premium canvas.  If that is the case just use the comment box available in the last step of ordering system, contact us via email or telephone.

Please don't hesitate co contact us if you require any additional information on canvas printing proofs.

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Canvas media close up photo

When you decide to print your photos on canvas you will definitely want them to last. To create canvases that will have a long lifespan and will stay in your family for decades they need to be done in the right way. Firstly the canvas used must be of  a decent quality - we have come across many distributors who contact us and offer their canvas media - and I have to say that sadly there is a lot of really poor stuff out there. Although it would be very cheaply priced tempting unexperienced printers to use them - the colour gamut and ink adherence will be very bad. And to make sure that we have the right media we do test them from time to time. Most of cheap canvas is made from 100% polyester - it is actually even hard to call it a canvas - it is very thin and artificial substance which lacks the feel, quality and printing characteristics of the proper canvas. I don't actually have anything against polyester itself - in fact all of the canvases we use do have polyester content - and this has been proven to have really good effect on the canvas media. It is adding stability against contraction and expansion to the standard canvas which reacts to humidity. There are uses for polyester canvases - a lot of cheap advertising is actually printed on polyester canvas using solvent inks - creating waterproof & outdoor ready products. So there are of course places where polyester canvas can be used. In my opinion though for the purpose of reproducing photos on canvas where we care more about quality and longevity polycotton canvas should be used. Please read more about our canvas printing process.

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Many times our customers were asking for bespoke canvas prints sizes - as a response to add we are offering canvas prints in a wide selection of sizes. They start at 6" and in 2" increment go up to 72". There is a bigger step after 60" - next one up is 72". As our printers are currenlty 44" wide we can offer 40"x72" as a biggest canvas at this point. We are considering purchasing even wider printer which will be capable of printing up to 64". But with our current printers there are still other ways to create massive canvas - i.e. by using split panels. 3 panels of 40"x72" will produce a massive 120"x72" canvas. Split panel canvases do look even more interesting than single panel ones. We recommend using them if your images are taken with Digital SLR cameras or simply cameras with over 10MP. We also will soon be offering a ready made products using professionally taken photos. For procing idea on any size you require please refer to our canvas sizes & prices page.

With the current wide selection of sizes we are also offering two different thicknesses of canvas frames. This are 38mm and 18mm. All canvases are supplied with wedges to keep your canvas tight at all times.

Custom size canvas are even easier to create using our canvas ordering system. This will show you exactly how your image will be cropped - our idea was to give you the full control over that. This has proven to be very popular amongst the customers - we also like the fact that you always know what your canvas will look like.

 

Another option which can be selected by you is the finish of the canvas - we varnish all of the canvases - there is no reason why they should not have professional protection which will make them look great and last. We use semigloss varnish for canvas - but there are also other options available. We can supply your canvas varnished with 100% matt, semimatt, or gloss varnish. The matt version is almost unnoticeable - but will still provide great protection for your canvas from UV light, water and accidental scratches. Any requirements for specific varnish can be added in the comments box available at the end of ordering process.

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Why do we varnish our canvas prints? I was quite shocked when reading suggestions that the companies that do varnish their canvases do it only to produce goods in bulk and because they store them for a long period of time there is a chance that they will get damaged and therefore the only reason to varnish is to prevent this from happening. This is truly unbelievable. Main reason for which this theory doesn't hold is that the canvas prints can not be produced in mass and bulk upfront - why? because we print customer's own photos and also usually it is just one copy of the image printed on canvas, not a mass amount of them.

It is interesting to see what kind of arguments our competitors would come up with just to hide the fact that varnish is an essential part of any canvas prints. Of course it adds protection against accidental damage and scratches that can happen during production, transport and also while they are hanged on your walls. I can't see any reason why this can be a bad?

But try reasons behind usage of canvas varnish are also:

- it protects canvas from UV therefore prolonging its life,

- it enriches the colours and adding more contrast,

- it acts as a moisture barrier - which allows to wipe it with a damp cloth if necessary,

- it produces professional look & finish desired by many customers.

 

So with this knowledge and the fact that we don't actually charge extra for using the varnish it makes it much easier to choose the printer of your canvas.

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When reproducing images on canvas media there is a lot of freedom - choice of media, choice of printers, finish and frame options. I would like to concentrate today how to make sure we can get best canvas prints from your photos at the very early stages. Some of the options discussed may be available to the owners of DSLR cameras only, some will apply to any digital cameras. With DSLR's it is crucial to choose shooting your images in RAW firmat. This format is actually free from any colour gamut cuts that are imposed by any colour space. We see very often that even after RAW files have been processed they are actually given sRGB colour space - which isn't going to contain all colours captured. Similarily Adobe RGB 1998 can also clip some colours but is much wider. It is much better to use this space - our goal in mind is to keep as many colour tones as possible. That allows to keep all smooth gradients and wide gamut of colours. There are some colours that will suffer more from assigning sRGB profile than others, but generally it will improve most pictures and certainly will not cause any colour loss in comparison to sRGB. We do also use Pro Photo RGB space which has a masive gamut but it only makes sense to use it in conjunction with 16-bit processing and printing. We have printed some images for professional customers using 16-bit workflow with good results. The improvement is probably more visible on paper substrates rather than canvas printing as canvas media texture makes some fine details to be lost anyway. It doesn't make much of a difference when printing on canvas. And as the reason is canvas texture there is no point in using 16-bit workflows for canvas prints ever.

Getting back to the subject of camera settings - please make sure to always use best quality settings available - it will pay off in the future. Not only when you decide to print it on canvas but it also allows to zoom in to the photo - and maybe choose different cropping if necessary. Processing RAW files does takes a bit of practice - but also gives all the control to us - it basically captures the data as gathered by camera  sensor. If you use jpg format - automated algorithims will remove most of the data and slash most of it only leaving very generic reprsentation of them. The worst part is that there is no going back - the data is lost forever. With the RAW we can make many different versions of the image and only save it with some loosles compresion options like .tiff or even .psd.

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