3 Ways to Easily Print Your Fine Art Photos on Glass

Gallery-Worthy Methods for Printing Photographs on Glass

Can you print photography on glass? Yes! Can you do it easily? Well, yes and no. There are various methods for printing on glass, and some are more involved than others. The quality of your results will will teeter with the materials you work with. When working with fine art photography, your aim is a high quality final product that you can display and sell. Here are three ways to print on glass that are easy, and can yield gallery-worthy results.


1. The DIY Method of Printing Your Photo on Glass

There are many techniques for printing your images on glass at home. Since we’re working with fine art, seeking archival quality work, it’s not as easy as printing your photo out onto legal paper and adhering it with Mod Podge. This will get your image onto the glass, but it will not result in a piece of art that you can display in a gallery (Yes, I saw the teenager who put his glasses on the floor at a show and got people to think it was art, and I still stand by this). You cannot use Mod Podge for fine art photography.

If you insist that you will print on glass yourself, you can use Diamond Glaze to place photos behind glass for small pendants, paperweights, and other items of this nature. Make sure that you are using high quality paper (not photo or legal paper, but something around 200-250 gsm) and a laser printer for the best results. Inkjet printers use inks that will cause your photo to bleed when dampened from the glaze.

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Printing Limitations:

Size – this will only work for very small projects before ink bleeding becomes an issue.

What You Will Need:

  • High Quality Digital Art
  • Laser Printer
  • Glass
  • Quality Paper
  • Ink
  • Diamond Glaze

2. Consider Investing in a Machine that Will Print Directly on Glass

There are thousands of printers on the market offering many options for printing on glass, from UV to inkjet to silk screen and flatbed to bottle printing systems. The range of options that allow you to undertake printing on glass with your own printer can be enticing; after all, it facilitates the most artistic freedom. If you want to start on a printing project in the middle of the night in your garage, nobody will stop you.

Individual Printer

Printing Limitations:

File Conversion – You will have to manually convert all of your files to work with the image processing software for your printer.

Investment Risk – The investment can range from several thousand to several hundred thousand dollars and up, depending on your needs. Investing in anything poses it’s own unique set of risks.

Maintenance & Troubleshooting – When printing in glass, issues will arise that you may not have thought about — dust settling on your work, hardware calibration, and routine printer maintenance. Knowledge of working with glass and limited sizes. When you purchase your own machine, you will be solely responsible for maintenance and troubleshooting.

What You Will Need:

  • High Quality Digital Art
  • Glass
  • Glass Printer
  • Ink
  • Image Processing Software
  • Maintenance Resources

3. Enlist the Help of an Expert Service to Print on Glass

When you contract the work of printing on glass to an expert, you may not be able to start a project at midnight and see the final results by sunrise, but you’ll certainly see a range of benefits that aren’t offered when creating everything from scratch in your studio. Fine art photographs, digital designs, and even paintings can be reproduced in glass easily with the help of a glass printing service. Find them both online and locally.

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Printing Limitations:

Variable – the limitations with glass printing services vary by company.

What You Will Need:

  • High Quality Digital Art
  • Photo Processing Software if creating Art yourself
  • The right to reproduce the Artwork
  • Relationship with Glass Printing Company

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Glass Printing Method

When it comes time for you to begin your journey printing fine art photography on glass, you should be asking yourself the following questions to ensure satisfaction.

  1. What sizes are offered with this printing system?
  2. Will the printer be able to cover the full spectrum of colors in my design? (ex: Illuma Glass uses fuchsia to highlight translucency in layered images, so colors in this tonal range are neutralized in the final product.)
  3. Are you able to harness light with translucency and opacity?
  4. Have you calibrated your monitor to ensure that the colors in final printed image will appear as you see them on your screen?
  5. Where will your glass print be featured once complete, and will the pro-offered technology provide everything you need to ensure the highest quality finished product?
  6. *If using a service that specializes in glass printing, do you know if the printers are housed in a clean room?
  7. How do they handle environmental dust, water spots, etc., when printing?
  8. Is the final print tempered safety glass?

Conclusion

If you want to use your fine art photos to print on glass, you absolutely can, and it doesn’t have to be stressful. Just ensure that you’re aware of the pros and cons of the available methods. Then, choose the system that will work best for your personal artistic needs. To learn more about a revolutionary method for printing archival quality work in glass, harnessing light with translucency, opacity, and layering, get the ebook below and Transform Your Art today.

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