World Printmakers’ Print Workshop Central

Online resources for fine-art printmaking workshops

5-Frequently Asked Questions

with 2 comments

Master Printer, Jane Pagliarulo
Photo courtesy of Atelier Meridian,
Portland, Oregon, USA

Print Workshop Central – Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why was Print Workshop Central created?
A: World Printmakers, the Print Workshop Central parent site, has been online since 2000. Over the years we have arrived at a few conclusions:

  • Prints and printmaking are essentially for minorities.
  • Printmaking studios are few and far between.
  • And they are very much on their own, with little contact or interaction with their colleagues.
  • There is a lot they can learn from one another.
  • Most people know nothing of fine-art prints, so they’re easy prey to fraudsters.
  • Authentic printmaking faces disloyal competition from companies selling inkjet copies as prints.

All of this adds up to fine-art prints being relegated to a shrinking elitist market, and printmaking professionals becoming an endangered species. We thought somebody should create the context for working actively to support print studios, educate the art buying public and generally celebrate printmakers and printmaking. We’re also keenly aware that one website is not enough. The more relevant presences your print studio has on the World Wide Web, the more effective your Internet strategy will become!

Q: Where does Print Workshop Central operate?
A: Since World Printmakers has always operated worldwide it was natural that we should give PWC an international character, as well. It’s more difficult to organize in the beginning but we are convinced that in the long run it will lend the initiative more variety, more interest-and more clout.

Q: What does PWC do?
A: PWC has created an online space for professional print studio people from around the world, the embryo of a community. There they can discuss fine-art-print issues and, one hopes, reach some sort of consensus and take joint decisions. They can interchange technical and business information, and they can plan joint initiatives whether artistic, commercial, educational or activist.

PWC also provides space on the site for each studio to present information on its operation, philosophy, services and resources, including text, images and videos.

With this infrastructure in place, the role of the PWC team is to foment discussion, propose issues and projects and help carry them out. These “issues and projects” run from adopting standards for print authenticity to online exhibits, opinion surveys and print education initiatives.

PWC also publishes articles aimed both to inform and to stimulate discussion on subjects of interest to print professionals.

Another important part of PWC‘s mission is to maintain contact with the media, both on and offline. It is our conviction that projects which are not well communicated do not exist.

Q: Who can participate?
A: In the beginning Print Workshop Central was conceived exclusively for professional printmaking workshops. Recently, however, we have discovered there are other stakeholders who should be admitted: printmaking associations, museums, art schools, the media. So we are now making provisions to include them in the PWC format. We think their input will be invaluable.

Q: What’s the profile of a typical participating studio?
A: There are several profiles:

  • Open workshops, usually public
  • Editioning services, usually private
  • Everything in between, from mainly educational operations to small studios in which master printmakers divide their time between their own and other people’s work.

Q: How do we sign up? What does Print Workshop Central need from us?
A: The signup procedure begins with your email to us expressing interest in participating in PWC. We then contact you with a welcoming note which outlines the material we need to create your PWC page. It need not be complicated. Most of the information and images we need are already on your website. It’s just a question of selecting them. We also suggest that you look at the pages of the studios which are already on the PWC site in order to gather ideas for your own.  After we receive your text, images, and video (if you have one), we’ll have your page dummied up and online in a couple of days. This process is explained more completely on the “How Do We Sign Up?” page, which is number 5 on the list at the right side of this screen.

Q: What does it cost?
A: We have just (Jan. 2010) lowered the annual subscription fee for a Standard participation in Print Workshop Central from 125-249 euros down to just 60 euros (about US$87 or 54 pounds GBP).  There is also a Free option which includes one photograph, the studio’s contact information and a brief one-paragraph description.

Q: Do you expect Print Workshop Central to have a public following?
A: Though PWC is designed for print professionals, there will inevitably be some spillover to interested members of the public, particularly printmakers and art educators, which is fine with us. Anyone who is interested can participate in the forums. They are not password protected, though they are monitored.

Q: What type of studios are admitted?
A: In a nutshell, Print Workshop Central admits professional print studios which produce authentic fine-art prints, whether from traditional or digital matrices. These are images which are created as original prints and edited, usually but not always, in signed and numbered limited editions. Producers of copies of existing artwork, whatever their copying technology, do not qualify.

Q: Last but not least, what’s in it for us, the print studios?
A: Print studios have a lot of benefits for belonging to PWC. Let’s see:

  • You get worldwide exposure on a unique print-studio-specific website. PWC membership admits you to an exclusive group of genuine fine-art-print professionals, immediately distinguishable from the vast majority of dealers in false fine-art prints.
  • You have access to creative, technical and business input and support from dozens of colleagues from international print workshops.
  • You get to coordinate your efforts on behalf of printmaking with like-minded colleagues from around the world.
  • In short, as fine-art printmaking professionals you are no longer alone. You form part of a group with similar objectives, fresh ideas and a willingness to collaborate with you.

Written by Michael Booth

September 19, 2008 at 10:19 am

2 Responses

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  1. ‘Authentic printmaking faces disloyal competition from companies selling inkjet copies as prints’.

    I am not a company…and I very much agree with the general criticism, but MY inkjet prints do not exist in any other form; they are not copies. I worry a bit that ANY injet print is automatically dismissed because of the method. It makes it difficult to submit work as ‘original’ which it can be …and can take just as much proofing, revision and thought (even abandonment!)as any other form of printmaking.

    Julia Matcham

    December 28, 2008 at 6:33 pm

  2. Hi
    I have a Charles Brand 26 x 48 intaglio press that I would like to post on your site.
    It is in good working order and I am asking $5000.00
    for it. The press is in Ottawa Canada.

    thank you

    greg ulmann

    March 28, 2011 at 6:10 pm

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