Posters as Art

Posters as Art

Jack Pumphrey, a long-time artist on the site, sent out an interesting newsletter from his site this week titled “Posters as Art”. We liked it and thought others would enjoy it too so we asked Jack if we could post it here. Thanks Jack!

Posters as Art, by Jack Pumphrey

Posters are art, too
Do you know the difference between an open edition fine art print and an art poster?

An open edition fine art print is not identified on the print; anywhere.

An open edition fine art print that’s identified with a title is a poster.

OK, what’s an “Open Edition”?
………….art reproductions that don’t have a pre-determined number of prints in any given print run.

What about limited editions?
…………….That’s when an artist orders an exact amount of prints, usually under his/her supervision and when that number is reached he/she orders the press stopped and discards any prints that do not meet the expectations of the artist. Those that don’t are tossed and “overs” are held back as “Artists Proofs”.

Are print runs like this called “Signed & Numbered”
………………Not until the artist inspects every print and then when satisfied with the quality, signs it in pencil with a slash mark between the print number and the number of prints ordered…….55/250


The desirability/value level of artist prints in their order of importance is:

  1. Signed/numbered/limited edition re-marquee
  2. Artist Embellished
  3. Signed/numbered/limited edition Artist proof
  4. Signed/numbered/limited edition
  5. Open edition
  6. Giclee artist print
  7. Print on demand


It doesn’t stop here; there is the multitude of methods of printing, such as:

  1. Litho stone/wet-stone
  2. Hand-pulled wet press
  3. Etched copper, hand set type
  4. Wet ink screen printing
  5. Hand etched copper, pressure pulled
  6. Lithography, single color
  7. Lithography, multi-colored
  8. Laser etched on wood, metal, crystal, acrylic & granite
  9. Digital, print on demand
  10. Art prints from Fine Arts America, a terrific value based on quality and inspection control.


If you would like a detailed accounting of all of the types of artist prints available please contact me and I’ll dazzle you with my expertise…………, I’ll mail you a sheet that’s up to date or, Google printing methods.

Jack Pumphrey
Artist & Printing consultant

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