What is Fine Art Scanning, and why do I need it?
Fine Art Scanning is the process of capturing a very high-resolution digital image of a work of art to ensure accurate preservation and reproduction of the work. When artists decide to market their artwork, the process of digital documentation is required whether or not they wish to sell the original artwork. From our highly accurate scans we can print the reproduction of the artwork to fine art papers or canvas. A version of the scans can also be used to share your work online while maintaining its integrity.
What types of artwork can be scanned?
Colour Systems is proud to be one of Canada’s very few premium fine art scanning and artwork documentation studios. We scan oil painting, acrylic, watercolour, ink, pencil drawings, crayon etc. and pretty much any artwork which is flat and rigid.
What types of artwork are difficult to be scanned?
- Loose un-stretched canvas which is over 16” x 20” in size. Loose canvas at 16” x 20” or smaller is not an problem
- Artwork which is not flat
- Artwork which is in deep frames
- Artwork which is framed with glass
- Artwork which contains highly reflective, metallic or fluorescent elements
How does your studio ensure the accuracy of colours in scanned artwork?
Authenticity is a priority when we are using imaging to preserve an invaluable piece of artwork.
The process of creating a digital reproduction from artwork is iterative. High resolution captures are made using some of the finest available contactless scanning equipment which scans true RGB data in 48bits. The scans are viewed on calibrated, wide format Eizo monitors.
While the process could end at the screen display of the scan, a digital image file is no more than a collection of pixels which serve to represent the real image. While our high-end, monitors are perfectly calibrated, no digital display can do more than simulate an image. Hence, proofing is an integral part of the process of creating an accurate reproduction. Proofs are prints which are made of key sections of the scan of the artwork.
Each proof is printed on the paper or canvas which was selected by the artist at the start of the process for the printing of the final digital reproduction. Either a portion of the artwork is printed or the entire image is printed at reduced size. From the printed proofs we can accurately judge just how closely matched the digital capture is to the original artwork. The proof is compared against the original artwork under industry standard viewing conditions and any adjustments can then be made effectively, if required.
On occasion only one proof is required to verify the accuracy of the scan. For other work additional proofs and modifications may be required to achieve utmost accuracy depending upon the artwork and the artist’s personal requirements. Each proof which includes some general colour adjustments is $25. Local work is additional.
Can you handle delicate or fragile artwork?
All work is handled with the utmost care and professionalism.
What is the resolution of the scans, and how does it affect the final output?
Scan resolution ranges are 6,000 x 4,000; 8,256 x 5,504; 11,649 x 8,736; 23,296 x 17,472 pixels at 48bits/RGB pixels. Our rotary drum scanner scans at 16,980 ppi. The resolution selected is based upon the required documentation level. Please see pricing section for the various scan levels.
Do I get to review and approve the scans before final delivery?
Of course, if proofing is not required, the scan can be reviewed on our calibrated displays in studio. They can be taken after approval or sent to you right away. If proofing is required - and we do recommend it - then once the final proof has been approved, the scan is either released or fine, 12 colour, pigment inkjet prints are created on one of our fine art papers or canvas which had been selected by the artist at the start of the process.
How long does the scanning process typically take?
The scanning process takes 1 - 2 days. Then, if proofing is required, proofs can be ready in 1 day. The rest depends upon the artist, in terms of their timing to review the proofs and to determine whether or not they want additional alterations or adjustments.
When you have your work ready, we encourage you to visit our downtown studio where we can view and discuss your images and you can select appropriate papers from our catalogues. Each page of the catalogues is a different paper on which the same two images have been printed so our clients can get an idea as to how the images render on each. Each second page of the catalogue is a blank sheet of the same paper so that one can experience the texture, weight, reflectivity, tactility and brightness of each sheet.
Do you back up your scans?
When a digital reproduction is finished, we back up all approved scans or the print ready files as provided by our photographer clients on 6 different servers in 2 locations. Artists or photographers can contact us at a future time to request prints on the specific paper which they had selected originally and new prints can be made as the artist or photographer makes sales of their prints or digital reproductions.
Will I get a copy of the scans?
If you prefer to keep the high resolution scans yourself, we provide the approved high resolution scan and a Jpeg for use on the internet.
How are the digital documents (scans) printed?
Colour Systems is a Canson Certified print atelier. With our 2 wide format, 12 colour printers and 2 wide format 11 colour printers, we print using OEM, pigment HDX inks. We have over 30 different fine papers in stock. While we do offer a small selection of basic paper such as Epson lustre, gloss, semi-gloss and matte, the majority are true, fine art papers from mills in France, Germany and Italy such as Hahnemuhle, Canson, Arches, Awagami, Fabriano etc.
“The personal service one receives is impeccable. One is shown various papers from which to choose and the results from each. Advice is given, but the client's thoughts are always considered first. Students of mine have also used their services and are not intimidated and completely satisfied by the experience.”
- Linda Dobbs -
"Great work! The very best. I highly recommend Paul if you need perfection."
- Michael Suba-
“I’ve gone to Paul for prints over the years and his work is exceptional. He charges a fair price for excellent quality prints.”
- Geoffrey Vendeville-
“This establishment produces professional quality art printing. The owner is very knowledgeable regarding paper types and quality. As well the colour scans are so accurate sometimes I preferred the copy to the original!!”
- Christina Nielsen -
“Paul is an exceptional professional who will not compromise on quality. He gives good advice and follows through exceptionally well. Highly recommended”
- Jon Dellandrea -