Printing photos on Acrylic verses printing on canvas

Printing photos on Acrylic is a new medium that will compete with canvas

A New Medium

Photos on canvas was introduced into the marketplace 10 years ago and has been growing ever since .Printing photos on Acrylic, a new medium is still in its infancy and starting to turn heads.

The main difference between the two mediums is the “wow” factor. When ink is printed onto canvas it absorbs into the canvas, thus altering its natural color and dulling it somewhat. When printing on acrylic the ink goes directly onto acrylic but does not absorb into it but spreads lush and evenly over the surface and makes the colors really pop off the acrylic. Colors are vivid and clarity of the image spectacular. We often compare photos on acrylic to High definition T.V, the results are that good. Don’t get me wrong some images still look great on canvas but results and consistency vary from each producer. Which brings me to my next point

Level of Entry

The Level of entry is also much harder when printing photos on Acrylic and requires more expertise and efficiencies. Printing on acrylic requires a flatbed printer which costs up to 125,000.00 and state of the art cutting machine which cuts the acrylic panels to the size you want. A canvas printer costs maybe 2,000.00.and requires no space or expertise to produce. With so many companies offering canvas printing there is a discrepancies in quality and overall performance.  With the huge capital cost associated with printing photos on acrylic there are only a dozen or so companies willing to undertake the demands and efficiencies needed in this process. Whereas you can get away with cheap quality canvas, printing on acrylic does not offer such luxuries. Acrylic can be produced In various thicknesses but the quality is consistent and rarely changes from panel to panel. To become an expert and stay competitive in printing on Metal and Acrylic the machines need to produce to near capacity- so changing materials with each job causes efficiency breakdowns and slows down the expertise curve dramatically.

As more and more designers and decorators educate themselves on printing on acrylic the medium will gain momentum and eventually capture market share from canvas. The shiny, rich color effect of acrylic will surely make this medium a real winner in years to come