How to Turn Artwork Into Prints

Are you wondering how to turn artwork into prints – believe it or not this process is not as tricky as it sounds! This is what you will need to do :

Painter with Paint, brushes and a canvas pad - Discussing How To Turn Artwork Into Prints and how to make art prints from originals
Wondering how to turn artwork into prints? Read on…

Digitise Your Artwork

The first thing you need to do is to digitise your artwork i.e. create a digital file from the original canvas/sheet of paper. You can either do this yourself with the help of a good scanner or you can employ a photographer/print shop with a large scale scanner to do this for you. I’ve always done this myself because good quality scanners aren’t actually that expensive AND you are in control of how the final image comes out. I’ve just found that doing things myself is quicker, easier and cheaper although I can fully understand why you would prefer to outsource this step as it isn’t exactly a thrill a minute!

If you are going to digitise your artwork yourself then you will need a scanner that can scan in at a good enough resolution. The scanner I have is this one :

Epson Perfection Scanner

Epson Perfection Scanner

This is quite an old model now so there are newer and swankier versions on the market now. However this model works perfectly! The maximum resolution is 4800×9600 and it is very easy to use i.e. place your artwork in the scanner and press the button. The BEST bit about this scanner is that it has a flip top lid which means if you have a larger painting you can scan it in parts and then piece the parts together afterwards using software such as photoshop (which is exactly what I did with some of my larger paintings).

Epson Perfection V370 with Flip Top Lid - perfect if you are wondering how to turn artwork into prints
Epson Perfection V370

Digitally Edit

Once you have your scanned jpeg image you will need to do some editing to ensure the colours are as true as you would like them, that the whites are white and the dark areas and shadows are correct. Below you can see the main things that I change :

  • I resize my image to a ‘standard size’ – for me this is 16×20″;
  • I remove the shadow and outside edges of the scanned image;
  • I clear up any blemishes/paint splats etc on the print that I don’t like the look of.
  • At this point I also adjust the colour. I will sometimes change the colour profile to the Adobe RGB one (sometimes I may leave it as per the scanner one – I make a choice depending on which I prefer); I then adjust the vibrance/saturation/light and dark areas to my preference.
How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - Image showing the things I change and detailing how to Edit a piece of scanned artwork and turn it into a a print for printing

To remove blemishes I tend to use the Spot Healing Brush Tool in Photoshop and also the Clone Stamp Tool as I find these genrally work really well :

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - Photoshop tools that I use to alter my images to turn them into prints.

If you are piecing together a series of images from a painting (i.e. you scanned a large painting in and want to create one file for printing) you will need to use software such as photoshop. I use the Photomerge function for this (File > Automate > Photomerge) :

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20
How to Turn Artwork Into Prints – How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20

A new window then pops up and I select ‘Collage’ on the left :

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20 - choosing Collage for photomerge when creating artowrk

I then select the scanned image sections I would like to merge together :

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20 - selecting the scanned files to photomerge

Once I’ve selected my images they display in the Photomerge window. ‘Blend Images Together’ is automatically selected however if not then you may need to select it manually and then click ‘OK’;

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20 - files for merge selected

Photoshop then goes off and does it’s thing on my images and then comes back with a merged image; Most of the time this is pretty good and just needs a little bit of editing.

How to Turn Artwork Into Prints - How to use Photomerge in Adobe Photoshop CC 20 - Finished merge example

I’ve only ever had an issue once with photoshop not merging my images correctly – in this instance the image was quite subtle so I can see why it had problems knowing where the joins were. In this case I merged the images myself manually which obviously took a bit longer.

This is the end of this section and I hope that you now understand
how to turn artwork into prints that you can then sell. If you have any questions or comments about this post of my website then why not pop them below or contact us on Facebook for a more interactive chat!

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