What is a Giclée Print?
Giclée prints are manufactured using high-resolution digital scans, which are printed using archival quality inks. The giclée printing process results in greater color accuracy than any other reproduction method.
The original painting is scanned, which enables the best quality reproduction since colours are accurate to the original and can even show the detail of brush strokes. This results in a much more colour-accurate reproduction than those from traditional four-color presses, and the inks are long lasting as well as resistant to light deterioration.
Where did the word giclée come from?
Giclée is based on the French word gicleur, the French technical term for a jet or a nozzle, and the verb coming from it gicler (to squirt out). Une giclée (noun) means a spurt of some liquid. The word was adopted by Jack Duganne, a print maker working at Nash Editions around 1990. He wanted a name for the new type of prints they were producing on a modified Iris printer, a large-format, high-resolution industrial prepress proofing inkjet printer.
One of the best print reproduction methods
Giclée printing is one of the best print reproduction methods available. The process uses a 12-color ink jet printer, acid free papers, and pigment-based archival inks. This insures that your prints will never degrade or yellow over time and allows better longevity.
The word giclée has come to be loosely associated with other types of inkjet printing including processes that use dyes or fade-resistant, archival inks (pigment-based), and archival substrates primarily produced on Canon, Epson, HP and other large-format printers. These printers use the CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black) color process as a base with additional color cartridges for smoother gradient transitions (such as light magenta, light cyan, light and very light gray), up to 12 different inks in top model printers (orange, green, violet (Epson); red, green, blue (HP)) to achieve larger color gamut.
The variety of substrates on which an image can be printed with such inks include various textures and finishes such as matte photo paper, watercolor paper, cotton canvas, pre-coated canvas, or textured vinyl.
*Sources: Precision Imaging + Wikipedia.