FAQ - FILES, PAPER, ORDERS, PAYMENTS & SHIPPING QUESTIONS

In what format should I upload my files?

We try to be as flexible as possible on this issue. TIFF is our favorite, but PSD, PDF, PNG and even JPEG are valid options. You must send the files without layers (flatten) and above all without layers with fonts or paths.

Should I send the files in CMYK or RGB?

RBG (sRGB IEC61966-2.1.) or Adobe RGB at 8-bit or 16-bit. Please take a look at our checklist on sending a file for printing to learn more about this subject.

Why should I send in RGB and not CMYK if I was once told to always go for CMYK when printing?

Don't worry, we're very aware of the whole huge issue around the CMYK “complex”, prepress, subtractive and additive modes, all the stories and the myths, but there are some things you should know before putting your foot to the ground saying that “CMYK is the thing”. In fact, you can and should use CMYK in any order to be sent to a printing service in 2 particular cases, namely:

    • 1) Are you absolutely sure which ICM profile the printing machine is calibrated for;
    • 2) Use some special colors where problems of halftoning and registration is much more important than color fidelity, which let's face it, is exceptionally rare.

In all other cases, there is a considerable risk of having your CMYK files converted to RGB (actually CIE LAB) and then back to CMYK, in order to match the workflow's ICM profile;

Modern workflows (RIP) are much more capable at RGB >> CMYK conversion than the process performed with your software of choice; You may take note of the following: never work or convert to CMYK mode unless you have full control over the entire workflow (calibrated) and this control includes the printers themselves.

The best color profile to use for this is sRGB IEC61966-2.1. RGB or Adobe RGB. At Pigmento we use 12-ink machines, we have a valuable range of inks at our disposal, there is no reason to restrict your work environment.

Can you help me with these color mode and profiles issues?

Sure! Get in touch through the contact form placed at the bottom of this page. Also, take a look at our checklist on sending a file for printing to learn more about this subject.

After sending me my prints what happens to my files?

Trash Bin! We cannot keep them for two reasons. The first, less important, is a question of space management on our side. We have to delete the files as soon as we receive notification of delivery and satisfaction. The second, more important, is related to ethics and intellectual and effective property of the works. We cannot keep files beyond what is exclusively contracted by the customer. After fulfilling that contract (printing and delivery), we have to delete the files.

After receiving my prints I was very satisfied and would like to order a few more copies. Do I have to upload the files again?

If both parts (you and Pigmento) have already exchanged messages confirming a good conclusion for the order, most likely the files have already been deleted. You should therefore confirm with us, but most certainly, you'll need to resend the files for printing.

Do you always post images of the printing process on social media?

No. Just for some cases! Not always, nor as a way to promote any given customer. It is simply a way to advertise and publicize the qualities of the service we provide. If by chance we've published an image of the printing process of your work that you don't want to see on our social media channels, p.f. get in touch so that we can delete it. Nevertheless, we ALWAYS ask permission before any publication and even so, we always tag the authors.

Note, however, that if we do not publish an image of one of your prints, that doesn't mean that we think any less of it. Printing already consumes most of our time! Photographing, publishing, and managing SM, is what we call the "mythical realm of free time". We record about 35-50% of everything we print. We publish perhaps 10% of that registered parcel.

What is a giclée print?

Excellent question?! This question is also answered on our homepage, and in some other posts on our blog, but nevertheless, here it goes again.

The word giclée (it reads "jeeclay") derives from the French verb "gicler" which means “to spray”. The word, actually, a neologism coined about 30 years ago, is used to describe a fine art digital printing process that combines mineral pigment-based inks with exceptional quality paper,

Imagem permanence is a legitimate concern for artists and collectors. Aging estimates – based on laboratory analysis – point to a fading and color change resistance of over 200 years under ideal conditions (dark storage at 22.7°C and 50% R.H.), and up to 86 years when exposed under glass.

Our prints are created with Canon's PROGRAF series printers with LUCIA PRO inks (always original inksets), with a 12-channel print head, capable of producing an extremely wide tonal and color gamut.

Our printing  tech offers smoothness and richness of color and our printers (just 2 for now) will ensure that the print is a close representation of the artist's original artwork. 

Giclée printing giclée print is, in sum, a method for art reproduction available to artists whose mass production of their works is unfeasible. Giclée printing allows artists to use art reproduction with quality and permanence and also, very closely to the original artwork.

Do you emit certificates of authenticity?

Of course! You can choose from two types of certificate. A first one, issued by us, with our dry stamp and print specification declaration. A second type of certificate is based on Hahnemühle's hologram system, in which each the artwork receives a numbered holographic stamp that corresponds to the numbered stamp placed on a Certificate of Authenticity. Elements like the title and authorship, type of paper, printing technology, inks, paper type and batch, etc.

What papers do you use?

All the papers we use for giclee printing (except for Hahnemühle Matt Fiber 200gsm) have archival characteristics. Some have a matte finish option, others have a glossy, pearl, satin, finish (or coating). Matte papers have different texture levels in order to allow the customer to choose the “touch” that best suits their artwork.

There are usually only two price levels for the papers we offer. A value for substrates from Canson Infinity or Hahnemühle and a second tier for less expensive papers like the ones we offer through the PC (Pigmento Coolectivo) line. PC.

What inks/inkset do you use?

We use - no matter what - LUCIA PRO original inks. These are pigment-based inks (or mineral inks or mineral pigment inks) of very high quality and durability, especially when placed on papers of an equivalent level of excellence.

Are the papers you use, acid-free?

Giclee printing without acid-free substrates/papers is not giclée printing! You can quotes on this!

The longevity of the final product (substrate + ink) largely depends on the pH value of the paper before printing, as well as its evolution over time. The presence of lignin also adds to this equation, and its exposure to light and oxygen, adds a yellowish hue to the surfaces of the materials where it is present. Yes, all our papers are acid-free, even Hahnemühle Matt Fiber 200g/m2, which at Pigmento we on not defining this paper as a suitable support for a true giclée print.

The pH values and other technical information can be found on the individual pages we have created for the presentation of substrates. More on this lignin issue can be found in the answer below.

When we use the term “acid-free paper” we're talking about a conditioning introduced during the manufacturing process. Calcium carbonate is added to the mix to neutralize the acidity of the natural material, and produce a stable alkaline configuration in the finished paper, producing a neutral pH value and therefore a longer print life; valid for cotton paper or alpha-cellulose.

What about lignin?

The important thing about lignin is that its presence is not noticed in the future, and this is ensured by guaranteeing it does not exist in the present. Lignin is, chemically speaking, a molecule present in terrestrial plants, associated with cellulose in the cell wall, whose purpose is to provide rigidity, impermeability, and resistance against biological attacks to plant tissues, mainly over the vascular systems of plants. Lignin is, therefore, a good “thing”. It's not when we talk about giclée printing paper, mas you got the point.

Lignin is the main component of wood if you don't count on cellulose. After the paper production process, it is present in large quantities in papers such as brown paper (used in bags for bread and other foods) and cardboard. These papers have some characteristics in common, among them, the dark colouration. The presence of a large amount of lignin in the composition of these materials is what produces this characteristic so… brown.

Lignin gives paper an aged appearance over time, that is, it accelerates its degradation. Lignin molecules undergo oxidation when exposed to oxygen, this changes make it less stable. To manufacture white paper, lignin must be almost completely extracted. This is accomplished through bleaching (whitening chemicals). During the production process, these chemicals are added to the cellulose pulp that separates and discards the lignin. The result is a white paper with a longer shelf life. 

What are OBAs?

OBA are the short form for Optical Brightening Agents – em português “Agentes de alvura” ou mesmo “agentes de brilho óptico” – são compostos químicos adicionados ao revestimento de alguns papéis. São usados para realçar a aparência da cor, branqueando o papel aumentando a quantidade de luz azul refletida e, como resultado, compensando os tons amarelos naturais. Diferentes papéis contêm diferentes níveis de OBAs. Pode confirmar se um papel contém agentes de brilho óptico colocando uma folha sob uma luz ultravioleta, se ela indicar uma coloração roxa, então contém OBAs, quanto mais brilhante a luz roxa, mais OBAs no papel.

Em termos mais técnicos, um OBA, ou alvejante óptico, é uma anilina incolor, que absorve radiação ultravioleta e a emite como radiação visível. A presença do alvejante óptico no papel impõe uma reflexão predominante na região do azul do espectro, influenciando positivamente a reprodução de cores frias (verdes, azuis e derivadas destas), interferindo por isso negativamente na reprodução de cores quentes.

Why is cotton so famous as a substrate for paper?

O algodão tem uma longa tradição de uso em papel.

Ainda durante os dias de hoje poderá encontrar “trapos” de roupas velhas na composição de papéis reciclados (daí o “cotton rag“) no entanto, os papéis para impressão giclée ou uso em belas artes, apenas de usam os lints de algodão da mais elevada qualidade, i.e., as fibras curtas que estão presas à semente de algodão após o descaroçamento e que, facto, também contêm celulose o que ajuda a dar estabilidade à folha de papel produzida no final. Em português pode chamar-lhe a “pluma” ou, menos glamorosamente, os “fiapos” de algodão.

Assim, e devido à origem do algodão, este tipo de papel produz um toque muito mais macio na superfície quando comparado com papéis de 100% alfa-celulose. Teoricamente o papel de algodão também tem melhor resistência e durabilidade do que os papéis de polpa de madeira, mas isso será toda uma outra discussão.

O algodão também possui reconhecidas qualidades arquivísticas ou de arquivamento. É comum dizer-se que para ponto percentual de algodão contido num papel, podemos contar com um ano de resistência à deterioração pelo uso. Por exemplo, um papel com 25% algodão pode ser manuseado e consultado por 25 anos sem mostrar sinais de deterioração. Não tome isto como lei, claro está.

What is alpha-celullose?

O papel de alfa-celulose é feito de polpa de madeira, sendo, por isso mesmo, um produto (ou fibra) natural. A α-celulose é a base da polpa de madeira; é composta por várias moléculas de açúcar unidas para formar uma cadeia.

Durante o processo de fabricação do papel, essa cadeia é quebrada, refinada para remover elementos indesejáveis ​​(como a lenhina de que falámos numa resposta acima) e então reformada para dar resistência à folha de papel final. Para criar diferentes acabamentos na superfície do papel, ocasionalmente, as fibras de alfa-celulose são combinadas com outros materiais, como lints ou plumas de algodão (veja p.f. resposta imediatamente anterior).

Existem muitos tipos diferentes de papel de alfa-celulose para fine art e giclée e a sua qualidade é absolutamente indiscutível e até a indicada para muitos tipos de obras. É sobretudo muito procurado no segmento da ilustração.

Do you print on handmade paper / brown paper / silk paper / cardboard / etc.?

We print , exclusively, on paper prepared for inkjet printing. which is the only surface available for a giclée process.

Can you, at Pigmento, order a certain paper (Bamboo, Hemp, Agave, etc.) on which I would like to test some of my images?

It depends! We have access to all papers – except when they're stockouts at the supplier – Hahnemühle and Canson. Still, “having a paper available” represents an investment in a certain quantity or stock of paper.

If your request for a quote is for an amount that, even though it represents a loss for Pigmento, is presented as feasible, we can try to make the paper in question available. If on the other hand, your order is for a couple of prints, we can hardly be of any help. No matter how much we love to be helpful, a business will always be a business and it is, in practical terms, impossible to have stock for all the papers on the market. Even if we are talking about only 2 brands.

How can I place an order?

É só seguir os passos que indicamos na página dedicada ao processo de encomenda.

How long do you take to process an order?

Normalmente, após confirmação de pagamento (ver abaixo), podemos demorar até 3 dias úteis a processar o pedido, mas depende sempre do nível de pedidos do momento. O tempo de entrega não depende de nós, mas sim da transportadora escolhida e pode ir de 24 a 48 horas para Portugal Continental, Ilhas e Espanha Peninsular, ou 3 dias úteis para a maioria dos países europeus.

How much are shipping fees?

We have a flat fee of 5,90 EUR para Portugal Continental. Para outros locais, veja p.f. abaixo. Temos uma taxa especial de 6,50 EUR para entregas para o dia seguinte em Portugal continental. Os nossos envios fornecem - no matter what - um código de seguimento CTT Expresso para rastrear as suas encomendas. Caso nos ceda o seu número móvel aquando do processo de encomenda, receberá também actualizações de estado via SMS.

SHIPPING FEES

Portugal continental …………. 5,90 EUR (1-2 dias úteis)
Ilhas (Madeira e Açores) ….. 10,90 EUR (2-5 dias úteis) ∇
Espanha Peninsular … 6,90 EUR (2-3 dias úteis) ¤
Europa – Zona 2 ……. 16,50 EUR (3-6 dias úteis)
Europa – Zona 3 …… 18,50 EUR (3-6 dias úteis)

∇ Dependente do grupo do arquipélago
¤ A Espanha peninsular não inclui as ilhas espanholas.

Europe– Zone 2 includes: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Slovakia, Slovenia.

Europe – Zone 3 includes: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Sweden.

How much does an order with 25 A2 prints weigh?

Apesar de o peso do papel e das respectivas tintas da impressão representarem uma considerável fatia do peso de cada encomenda (1684g apenas para o papel numa encomenda de 25 A2 em PC White 270g/m2), há que contar com o peso do material de embalagem e protecção das impressões, entre outros items presentes numa embalagem final.

Assim, por experiência tantas vezes comprovada, temos que uma encomenda de 25 impressões A2 em PC White 270 g/m2 (o nosso papel mais usado), pesa aproximadamente 4500g (4,5Kg).

Adicione cerca de 235g para uma encomenda equivalente em Hahnemühle Photo Rag 308g/m2, i.e., aproximadamente 4735g numa encomenda de 25 impressões A2.

Is there a minimum amount for an order?

No. You can order from a single A5, up to as many A1 as you like for any paper we have in stock (see homepage, please). However, please take note that the cost of an A5 is always less than the minimum postage costs (5.90 EUR).

What payment methods are available?

Payments can be made via Bank Transfer (CGD), Stripe or Paypal will very soon be available.

Can I pay an urgent fee for faster service?

Não! Todas as encomendas são processadas da mesma forma. Não temos “serviço expresso”. A única taxa de urgência de que dispomos só se aplica aos portes que, sendo para o dia seguinte (válido para Portugal continental), têm valor de 6,50 EUR.

How are prints shipped?

Todas as impressões são enviadas através de CTT Expresso.

Are giclée prints well packaged?

Sim! Muito bem. Usamos diversos materiais de protecção em cada impressão ou encomenda.

Do you provide a shipping tracking code?

Sim, sempre. Enviamos sempre o número de seguimento do objecto expedido. Se fornecer o seu número de telemóvel aquando do pedido de amostras ou da formalização de encomendas, também receberá actualizações de estado da remessa via SMS.

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