How to Choose the Best Paper for Your Fine Art Prints

How to Choose the Best Paper for Your Fine Art Prints

There is a lot to consider when choosing what type of paper to create your fine art prints with. While there’s nothing quite like an original piece of artwork - with the right paper, printing process, and attention to detail, it’s more than possible to produce art prints that look and feel just as good. In general, it’s best practice to select paper that has a surface closest to that of your original artwork. For example, digital and ink illustrations tend to look best on paper with a smooth, matte finish; whereas many watercolor artists prefer the textured surface of cold press paper. Whatever the medium, we have options to suit your needs and bring your creative vision to life! 

Without further ado, let’s dive into our most popular paper options; and remember, you are always welcome to meet with our print team to see samples and talk through your options. 


Archival Matte Paper  

Our archival matte paper is a popular choice for many artists, especially those who are just starting out with art prints. The smooth, matte finish makes it a versatile option for any type of artwork; however, it is especially popular among digital artists as the bright white finish maintains the vibrancy of colors from screen to paper.  It is also our most affordable option, starting at just $2.50 for a 5x7 print. 


Cold Press Paper 

If you’re looking for something with more of a textured matte finish, the cold press paper is a great option; especially for watercolor artists. The rough, toothy surface mimics traditional cold press watercolor paper, giving these prints the same look and feel as original paintings. 5x7 prints start at $3.25. 

 “I love the cold pressed paper and so do my customers. I often display originals alongside the prints and customers are so impressed by the quality - they can barely tell them apart!” - Sheyla Stevens @sstevensart 


Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Ultra Smooth Paper 

Our Hahnemuhle photo rag paper is a luxurious option with an ultra-smooth, silky matte finish. This paper is an excellent choice for all kinds of fine art reproductions and photography. The premium coating maintains exceptional color vibrancy and allows for a very deep black; making this the best option for black and white photography. This paper starts at $5.25 for a 5x7 print. 


Hahnemuhle Bamboo Paper 

The Hahnemuhle matte bamboo paper is a fantastic eco-friendly option, made of 90% bamboo fibers and 10% cotton. The natural, warm tone of the bamboo is particularly well-suited for monochrome prints and artwork with warm tones. Additionally, its lightly textured surface makes it a great option for watercolor artists looking for slightly less texture than the cold press paper. Bamboo prints start at $3.50 for 5x7 prints. 

Glossy Photo Paper 

Our glossy photo paper is an excellent choice for photographers of all kinds. With its smooth, high-gloss finish, this paper produces rich, vivid colors and easily captures all the sharp details in photos. Prints on our glossy paper start at $2.50 for 5x7 inches. 


Let’s Get Printing! 

We’re here to help! If you’re still not sure which paper to choose, call, email, or stop by our print studio to look at samples. We also offer up to four complimentary 5x7 proofs so you can decide which paper is most suitable for your artwork. 

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