Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Making and selling prints online

I started my Etsy online shop in 2014, almost almost 6 years ago now. It was in response to requests about my sketchbook drawings which I was sharing on my blog and Twitter. As I like to keep all my sketchbooks, making digital prints (also known as giclee prints) from them seemed a good idea.

I chose to have the prints made professionally and found a great printers nearby in Crystal Palace who I’ve used ever since. They are called ‘Just Giclee’ and I’ll leave their contact details at the end. They print on Hahnemuhle paper and the results are of such good quality that they almost look like the original watercolour piece. The company are really accommodating you have a tight deadline too.

Detail from print of the Green Man pub.

To go from sketchbook to print, first I scan the image, into Photoshop. The scanner I use is an Epson A3 Workforce WF-7610. Then I clean up and resize the image before sending it to the printers via ‘We transfer’, the file sharing software. Once collected, I sign it and put it in a cellophane sleeve, backed with card. I add another sheet of card to help protect it, before sending through the post. I have had one incident where I had to resend the package that got damaged but generally it has been okay.

It’s lovely to get feedback from customers. Here are some of the reviews I’ve had:

"Thank you for such a gorgeous print. It arrived very carefully packaged (and beautifully!) in a timely manner. Thank you for the personalisation - I am sure it will be always be a treasured momento of a very special day."

"A beautiful picture, just what I wanted. Writing a personal message on it was extremely kind. Quick, careful delivery too. It is wonderful."

"Gorgeous print and wonderful service. Love it!"

"Excellent in all respects! Highly recommended."

As well as prints, I’ve also sold postcards, guide books, map guides and offered commissions for house, pet and car portraits via the online shop.

The Etsy platform is a relatively easy and inexpensive way to set up an online shop and I’ve enjoyed the experience of using it. It’s great to know that the customer has paid before you send something off! The fee structure has changed in recent years but I still think it is a good option for small creative to begin selling online. It’s been lovely to be able to send prints to various parts of the world. My own little shop is having a sale at the moment as I prepare to shut it for a while to re-evaluate what to offer customers online in the future.

Just Giclee
8 Stony Lane
Upper Norwood
SE19 3BD


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