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Answers to frequent questions

Here are some answers to questions many people have asked me.  For questions I haven't thought of yet, please get in touch on my Contact page - I'd be delighted to hear from you.

What's a "print", anyway?

"Print" can be a very confusing term in art, because the same word can mean quite different things.  Often when people talk about prints they mean a photographic or digital reproduction of a work of art originally created in another medium, like painting or drawing, or perhaps using a program on a computer.  These are made using photo-mechanical reproduction processes, like inkjet or offset lithographic printing.  They are NOT made by the artist, are not made in the same medium as the original (they're not paintings or drawings, for instance) and they're photographically identical.  

Hand-made, or original, prints are quite different in the sense that each is made, one at a time, by the artist using tangible, physical, "real" materials.  In my case, I carve an image into a block or blocks of wood, apply ink to the block, put a piece of paper on it, and apply pressure either with a press or, occasionally, rubbing it by hand.  Color, and some black and white, prints need more than one block and more than one pass through the press. You can find out more about the whole process on the About The Prints page. 

Original prints are unique works of art, each one made individually by the artist - and at the same time they're part of a series of artworks all made from the same matrix (wood block, for me) that are quite similar, but not necessarily identical.  Some printmakers are highly skilled at the craft of printing and produce an edition of prints that are as near identical as humanly possible, while others intentionally allow each individual print to vary from the others.  Many of us, or at least some of our prints, fall somewhere in between - but the entire edition is made using the same block or blocks.  

Most original printmakers produce limited editions - we decide in advance how many we're going to print, and once we've printed them, that's all there will ever be.  That's the little number on the print where it's signed:  X/XX.  The first is the unique number of the individual print, and the second is the total number in the edition.  We ensure that the end of the edition really is the end by destroying or altering (carving into) the block so the same image can never be printed again.

A printmaker may create an "open" edition, where the total number of prints is not limited - we just keep printing them as long as people want them.  This was much more common a century or more ago - Rembrandt for instance made (or rather supervised making) lots of prints and didn't limit or number them at all.  However, normally we now number the prints so you, our collectors, know the maximum number of each print there can ever be.  Some of my smallest and least expensive prints I make as open editions, without numbers, and these are identified as such in their descriptions.  

Framing

I normally frame my work with relatively narrow, understated wood or metal frames, and I use glass rather than plexiglass.  I try to ensure that the photos of framed work are pretty typical of the actual frames I'm using, but there can be slight differences from time to time depending on which frames are available.  If you'd like a higher-resolution photo of a particular frame, or would like to talk about different framing options, just let me know.  Of course you can always take an unframed print to your favorite framer, too.

Shipping

I offer free shipping within North America and the U.K. to make life simpler for both you and me!  However, I can ship a print to most anywhere in the world and would be happy to figure out about shipping to other countries.  It's just that the cost is so variable and sometimes so expensive that I can't promise to do it for free (although it's possible for some places).  Please send me a note and I'll let you know exactly! 

I normally ship using Priority Mail with the US Postal Service, and insure the package.  I'll send you the tracking number as soon as it's shipped.  Normally I can pack and ship your print within a couple of days; and if there will be any delay I'll let you know and make sure it's acceptable.  I can always ship using other methods, including second-day or overnight delivery if you need, just send me a note or give me a call and I can let you know the cost.

Returns

I'm confident you'll be happy with my work but I do realize in this online age that seeing something in person on your wall is different from seeing it on a screen.  If you're unhappy with anything for any reason I'll be happy to take it back and either give you a refund or exchange it for something else, so long as it's undamaged of course.  Since my shipping it to you is free, I just need to ask that you pay for the return shipping (with insurance).  Please let me know if you need to return anything and we can work out the details.

If at some time in the future you find you like something new I've done even better than what you have, I'll also be happy to exchange a print and credit the original purchase price towards the price of a new one.

Please let me know what I've forgotten!

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