Giclée Printing at Hockensmith’s Fine Art Editions

Giclée is a form of digital fine-art printmaking often associated with limited-edition prints.
A giclée print is a digital reproduction of the original artwork on various substrates.

Giclée printing

A giclée (pronounced “gee-CLAY”) is a meticulously faithful digital reproduction of original artwork or photos on any of various substrates or print media. The word giclée comes from French and means “to spurt, to squirt.” Pioneer Jack Duganne chose this word as he innovated with this new form of printmaking in the early 1990s.

Giclée printmaking is now recognized by museums as the best means of printmaking to emerge in the 20th century. Based on digital technology, the primary purpose of giclée printmaking is to create museum-quality limited editions for artists working in two-dimensional media. Giclée is also a way for innovative photographers to express their photographic art. Tightly controlled limited giclée prints introduce an artist’s work to a wider market while still maintaining the worth of the original work.

The artistic and technological skills combined with state-of-the-art equipment and museum quality substrate options allow Hockensmith’s Fine Art Editions the capabilities to be one of few printmaking houses in the country that focuses on the faithful reproduction of photographs and paintings.

Georgetown artist Tracey Sanchez signs a giclée print of her original painting.

Proper Setup

The giclée process setup involves capturing a proper scan of the original artwork. For original works and large-scale photographs, we use a super high-res DSLR camera in a light-controlled setting to capture a clean, 100+ MB high-resolution digital image without glare, unequal light, or distortion.

After we acquire a proper image file, the image is imported into the latest digital editing software to make additional color and lighting corrections in order to match the original work.

Once the artist approves a finished print, the file is available to the artist and also remains with us for future printing projects.

Photographer Brett Henson captures a clean, high-resolution photograph of an original work by artist Cory Hall.

Options and Pricing

Fine Art Editions Gallery and Press is a full scale printing house, which means your photographs and original work are printed right here in our Georgetown gallery and never leave the careful hands of our trained staff. Your photos are printed on one of four substrates: luminous luster paper, semi-matte paper, watercolor paper, or canvas.

The individual print cost is determined by the square inches of the overall substrate. Patrons have the choice to print on luminous luster paper, semi-matte paper, watercolor paper, or canvas. Our Epson Stylus Pro 9800 and 7800 wide-body printers use Symphonic dyes, giving accuracy to original colors. Hand-torn deckled edges can be added to watercolor prints, and black-edge gallery wrap give a sleek finish to canvas prints.

For specific pricing on your order, please call us at (502) 863-2299 or email us at johns@finearteditions.net for more information to initiate the process of turning your original artwork into giclée prints.

Lexington artist Bre Kort inspects her giclée prints. All prints are approved by the artist before leaving our gallery.

Quality and Consistency

Your giclée prints are beautiful—why aren’t others?

This is similar to other questions: Why do some guitars make better music than others? Why do some ovens produce gourmet foods while others just heat up food? Why do some pastels, acrylics, or oils produce masterpieces and the same art supplies fail in other hands?

The science of digital printing is ultimately controlled by the discretion of the printmaker. The whole giclée process requires the creative judgments of the attending technician. Giclée printing is one of the brave new frontiers where the digital world meets the seasoned intuition of an experienced artist. There is no shortcut or pure automation that produces great music, sensational food, fabulous paintings, or exquisite giclée prints. Each of these expressive endeavors requires the discretionary decisions of its respective artist.


We pride ourselves in offering services for every stage of your imaging needs. After your images are printed, we invite you to have them custom framed by our framing specialist team headed by Mark Sweazy. Learn more about custom framing at Fine Art Editions.

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