The art print market has an innumerable range of options available for collectors to choose from while buying art. Amid a wide range of options available, a good print always helps supplement the collection. To understand the ways of making a wise selection for an art print, we need to understand the factors affecting the value of a print.

While not all collectors emphasize budget or buying affordable art, it is advised to buy something worth the investment. The prints that are old, rare, or fine are expensive, thus it’s indispensable to check requirements, budget, and go for something that matters.

Most art collectors have a fair understanding of quality prints. However, if you are a novice collector, do not confuse fine prints with photocopies. Famous prints made using inkjet printers are not the same as the original copies. To have a long-lasting art, buying a valuable and unique work of art is significant. 

Invented around 3500 BC, the earliest printing methods for art were cylinder seals. Intaglio printing was also used in the 15th century for the publishing of art.

In today’s evolved epoch, collectors planning to buy art (online or offline) firstly need to think of the edition to buy- Open or Limited. 

Open- For the open edition prints, there is no limited edition/numbers of prints, so collectors can buy their favorite artist’s art by connecting to them offline by visiting galleries or exhibitions, or online on websites like Fizdi, IndianArtIdeas, etc.  

Limited- For the limited edition prints, which are available in certain limited numbers only, you get it exclusively from the artist only until it’s sold. Therefore, these cost more than open prints. 

So if you are an art collector who emphasizes the quality of art print specifically and collects limited editions only, work on deciding your preference of editions prior. 

To make the final choice, read the print-making techniques and choose a print technique that assures you your preferred art print type. To help you understand the significance of each print produce better, we bring the four-printmaking techniques to know the difference and choose wisely. 

Types of Prints:



The Intaglio method talks about applying ink and wiping it off to allow ink in the grooves so that its pressure allows the image to print on the paper. The variations of this method are:

  • Engraving- Here the artist uses Burin, a sharp tool for making lines into a metal plate before the printing process. 
  • Etching- Etching includes coating the metal plate with wax for the desired print. Later the plate is placed in acid for better lines. 
  • Aquatint- This variation includes creating tonal gradations by fusing resin particles. This process takes place before running the plate through the press.
  • Mezzotint- This includes grounding the plate to create a smoother effect.

For collectors willing to have a print with incredibly long life and something that brings out a fine level of detail of the painting, intaglio print is the best. 



Opposite to Intaglio, relief prints are practiced by applying ink to raised surfaces. This results in bringing a contrast of colors. These prints include:

  • Woodcuts- This procedure includes hollowing some wooden blocks before applying ink. These carved wooden tools are used later for creating fine lines. 
  • Wood engraving- Hard woodcuts are used as sharp tools to create sharp lines to offer more detail. 
  • Linocuts- Here a linoleum block is used alternatively to wood for a softer and versatile color. 

Lino Relief Print

A Lino Relief Print 

For the collectors looking for a solid black and white, eye-catchy art piece, relief prints in woodcuts or linocuts are the best choice. Relief prints cost less and can be produced in large quantities easily, so, if you are looking for an affordable art, get your preferred painting in relief prints. 



This technique has a porous stone coated with grease to draw images using water and ink. The ink sticks to the grease mark helping the porous stone leave a mark on the paper. This technique was invented in 1796 by German author and actor Alois Senefelder and brings a bold effect to art. For those looking for a quality image with cost advantages, a print drawn with this technique is the best. 

4.Stencil Process

This process involves the artist painting on a mesh screen to have the ink drawn on the substrate. Using an insolvent material for the screen, the main design is dissolved in water. This way the unwanted portions appear on the mesh’s opaque layer. Later, placing the paper underneath, ink is applied using a squeegee for printing the design on paper. 

Forms of stencil process of printing:

  • Screen-print
  • Serigraph
  • Silkscreen

Abstract Serigraph Print

Abstract Serigraph print 

Abstract Screen Print

Abstract Screen-print 

Silkscreen print

Silkscreen Print

Initially, serigraphs were for those collectors who could not afford an original masterpiece. However, in recent times, more art collectors show interest in signed and limited edition serigraphs. What is your choice?

Making a Collection

For those who wish to collect mesmeric artworks for décor and investment, it is vital to collect long-lasting prints and one that matters. Even the buyers love a collector who has a valuable collection worth the investment, thus selecting the art print accordingly is important. 

brilliance artwork

To end up with the best print, check the essential considerations below:

  • Identify the art medium that attracts you- Abstract, Landscape, folk art, contemporary, etc.
  • Check edition number. If the number is low, it means the art has a limited edition, which makes it costly. Therefore, decide the budget. 
  • Preview the artwork in mind. Think of the color, size, and print form to ensure the best result.
  • Choose the frame. 
  • Consider the state of the print, i.e. the stage of development of the print. The artist keeps on changing compositions, so you need to pre-decide the edition number or the stage of the development matrix. 

Also Read: How to Buy an Affordable Art?

The Budget Constraint

While trying to make the right choice in buying art prints, it is always advised to work as per the budget. Not all collectors have a budget in mind while they invest in artworks. However, staying within the price range helps earn better results on investment. Here the factors to consider:

  • Visit galleries, exhibitions, and even online art galleries to check the available price points. 
  • You can also look at the works of young artists, as they can bring you some stunning collections in affordable ranges. Their works are of high quality and you will not regret buying high-quality prints from them. 
  • Decide a print and look for the same on various websites and offline galleries to crack the best deal. 

The Don’ts of Buying Art Prints

Intaglio Print

Intaglio Print

  • Avoid buying prints that are in a poor condition. 
  • Avoid buying prints neglecting margins.
  • Do not go to a non-reliable source. 
  • Avoid reproductions.


Before displaying the art, consider some tips for framing the print:

  • Work with a professional framer for proficient results and a long-lasting print.
  • If you do not want to frame, store the prints in acid- and lignin-free enclosures ensuring a cool environment away from direct sunlight.
  • Protect the print from UV rays and pollutants. 

Wrap Up:

Collecting prints is all about selecting an art movement that matters. The print types discussed above talk about the techniques of art printing, which will help you finalize the form of print you want for your painting. Whether it’s an Intaglio, Relief, Lithograph, or Stencil print, always remember to gain knowledge in the genre before buying.

Printing techniques are versatile and help bring a controlled output as per the need. So, if you have finalized your print style, start visiting galleries, exhibitions, or online art galleries like IndianArtIDeas for affordable art pieces that do not compromise on quality. 

What are you waiting for? Check out our vast collection and get some stunning art prints for yourself.