Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2015 Pricing Changes

With the new year starting, here are a few pricing changes we will be implementing.
We will not be raising any prices on scanning and printing!
Most of these changes come from analyzing our expenses and finding where we are actually losing money. So, please know that we will be charging for the following services:

Any art being shipped that is 16x20 or smaller that requires a double cardboard folder will cost 3$ plus the actual UPS or USPS cost.

Any art being shipped that is over 16x20 and requires a double cardboard folder will cost $5 plus the actual UPS cost.

Any art being shipped that requires a custom made box will cost $10 plus UPS.

If you would like to have your prints in a folder when you pick up, please let us know when ordering so we can have it ready when you arrive, or bring one with you - we love to recycle! Above pricing will apply if we make one for you.  It turns out, this is where we lose a great deal of money.  It is better for everyone for us to charge for it if you need it than to raise our prices on printing/scanning.

Some of you may notice a small jump in UPS shipping costs this year.  Mostly for those who are in rural areas.  If you have a commercial place you can send to, that will help keep your cost down.
UPS seems to be charging a great deal more these days to send to homes in rural areas.

As you all know, we are trying to phase out CD's all together because of the many pitfalls of using them i.e., degradation, one time use, easily scratched etc. Starting this year, we will charge $2 per CD
if you would like your files on a CD.  This will include replacements as well as CD's for new scans.
If possible, we now prefer to put your images on a thumb drive, USB stick or external USB drive.
They are much safer, the files can be modified, and they hold much much more information than a CD. The best thing is, we don't charge for it!

Hangers and Wire
We have had a great deal of demand for wire on the back of stretched canvases this year so if you would like to have wire or hangers, let us know and we'll do it for $5!  (Sorry, we will not provide the hardware for free if you want to put it on yourself. It will still be $5.)
Normally we do not provide hardware for stretched pieces, so please specify when ordering if you would like us to add wire.

If you have any questions, feel free to give us a call!  410-247-7771 9am to 4pm.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Greeting Cards!!!

Woohoo!  Archival Arts is now offering short run greeting and note cards.  This service is replacing our fabric printing since the fabric printing has not had the demand needed to keep the machinery printing.  We have had a great deal of demand for cards lately so we are trying it out!  Here's some Q&A's....

What size can you print?
5x7 and 4.25x5.5

What papers can I print on?
Linen, which is a matte finish with a crosshatch texture.
The crosshatch will show through on your image.

Satin, which is a semi gloss.  Same finish on both sides, but easy to write on.

High Gloss, which is matte finish on the back side to make it easier to write on.

Can I print just a couple?
Yes! any amount up to 100 cards per image.
If you are planning to print more than a couple hundred cards we would prefer you use
a short run offset printer like IndigoInkprint.com

Can you print a bleed? 
Yes, but only on the front of the card, not on the inside, (a bleed is when the image goes all the way to the edge of the card.

Do they come with envelopes?
We are stocking regular white envelopes. If you need clear boxes try and www.clearbags.com.

What do they cost?
Pricing ranges from 55 cents each to just over $1 each depending on size and paper.

Do you have quantity discounts?
No, since we are only doing short runs, we are not offering quantity discounts.
That being said, our pricing is very reasonable!

Does the pricing include design?
If you have an image on file here at Archival Arts and you want a simple card with your image and your name on the back, we will set up your card for $8.  If you want special designs, we will charge a design fee of $60 per hour.
Please note, if you want all of your images on file to be designed on cards, we will charge our hourly rate.

Is the color going to be as good as my giclees?
We cannot guarantee accurate color matching on the cards since laser printer color tends to drift as it is printing. That being said, most of the cards we have printed so far are very close to the original art.
Please note that large areas of solid color may show some streaking.
Darker images also tend to run dark.
Warning, We will not sit at the printer and run proof after proof until the color is correct. Laser printing is not an exact science so we ask that you are reasonably flexible with color matching and print quality. We may ask you to see a proof first if you are ordering a great deal of prints.

If you have any other questions, feel free to call.  Hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

4 tips for buying canvas prints.

     If you have known me for any amount of time, you know I constantly preach about having a quality scan to produce quality canvas prints. This week I want to touch on a subject that separates the giclee industry into two categories:

1. Those who use the low priced canvas.
2. Those who use the best quality canvas. 

     This is a subject that shows up in just about every retail industry there is.
As we all know, you get what you pay for. Unfortunately, sometimes we pay a premium thinking we are getting better quality when in fact, the premium is just putting more money in the sellers pocket and you got a low quality product.
Here are a few tips to avoid getting burned when buying canvas prints either to re-sell or for personal use.

1. Ask the printer or seller what kind of canvas they use and whether it is 100% cotton or a poly/cotton blend or even linen. If they can't tell you exactly what brands they use and why, it is likely they are searching the market for the cheapest deal and using very low quality canvas that will easily rip and degrade quickly over time. Cheap canvas dries out very quickly and becomes brittle.

2. If the print has a satin or gloss finish, ask if the print was varnished after printing.  If the print was made with "gloss" canvas, you have found a printer that is cutting corners at the expense of quality.  I have not found a gloss canvas that you can't easily rub the print off with a moist finger.  Not good! If the print was varnished with a sprayer or coating machine, that is a good thing!

3. Ask if the print was printed on rolls or sheets. If it was printed on a sheet, you are dealing with an amateur who has not done their homework before starting their business. 

4. Lastly, ask for a sample print so you can see and feel the product before you buy.  If you get a small sample, test it. Good canvas will have nice dark blacks. Not a faded look. Rub it on the carpet a bit, wet your finger and rub it, does the ink come off or chip very easily? Try ripping the canvas or poking a pen through it. Good canvas will hold up. All giclees will eventually begin to chip on the edges if not framed, but a good print should hold up to a little light rubbing since it will need some dusting and maybe cleaned with a damp cloth at some point.

     In my experience about 80% of the giclee canvas out there is extremely low quality. Our business is constantly hounded by companies that tell us they can provide cheaper canvas with the same quality we currently use. I test them all.  In 15 years of printing on canvas, I have never found a stronger canvas with better print quality than Parrot Digigraphic canvas. There are a few others that are close but we have stuck with this brand and have always had great quality. 

Hope that helps!