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Original or a Print? What’s the Dilly?

Updated: Mar 24, 2023

One of the most frequently asked questions that I receive from clients is "what is the difference between an original painting and a canvas art (giclee) print?" I want to clarify any confusion regarding the critical differences between these two product options so that you make the most informed decision before you officially proceed with your artwork purchase.


Original paintings are one-of-a-kind artworks produced by the hands of an artist. An original artwork is unique to the buyer as no other person in the world has it. This creates a very special relationship between the painting and the buyer as well as between the buyer and artist. It is an incredibly exclusive and intimate experience purchasing an original painting as you are personally supporting an artist & their passion. In becoming a collector of original artworks, you are welcoming into your home all of the hard work, care, and preciousness that went into creating the piece.

Large Blue and Teal Abstract Painting by Julie Ahmad
"Seaside Passage Ways" 36"x 60" Mixed Media on Canvas
Original Still Available!

Original art continues to increase in value over time - it's the gift that keeps on giving. You are the only one who owns it and that's a special feeling. An original piece of art is something that you can pass down generationally, which continues your familial legacy through art. Original art inspires us and gives your home a personal, unique touch.

There is a common misconception that all original paintings are ultra pricey, which is actually not always true as there are a ton of emerging artists that have incredibly affordable originals available! I firmly believe that ART IS FOR EVERYONE and should be accessible to all. Every artist starts somewhere and in purchasing an original piece from a local + emerging artist, you are truly supporting the kickstarting of their professional career. When you own an original from a hidden gem artist that maybe the world has not seen yet, you are one of the people in the beginning that identified their great talent & promising path to success. You become an integral part in their journey as an artist and that is never, ever taken for granted.

An original painting is the legitimate foundation for what eventually will become a canvas art print; it is the "mold" for the print. Original paintings are NOT REPLACEABLE as there is only one of its kind that exists and cannot be cloned as an original. With the various mediums that I use to create my originals, such as acrylic paint and a coat of varnish, are not as delicate as they may seem and can withstand the test of time. There is so much detail, texture, and depth that lives on the canvas of an original painting that is not exactly captured in the 2D image.

Large Deep Red and Pink Abstract Painting by Julie Ahmad
links above to print version of artwork in various sizes, sold separately

A canvas art (giclee) print is a high resolution digital image of an original artwork that is then imposed or “printed” onto the surface of a canvas or a variety of product options. Technology is producing some pretty fantastic results in terms of the quality and likeness to the original painting. Canvas art prints are replaceable, whereas originals are not.

This is a less expensive option and great for people that may be new to purchasing art! A high quality version of the original painting on whatever product base that you would like. As shown on my products page, I sell my prints on Fine Art America/Pixels which provides an array of product options that include a multitude of canvas sizes for you to mimic the original onto whatever other sized canvas that works best for your space. Not only do they offer canvas prints, but they also carry legitimate products that you can get my originals printed onto such as a tote bag, throw pillow, shower curtain, phone case & more! These printed products are great for gifts, as well! ;)

Blue Abstract Painting
"Destination Hydrotherapy" 30"x 40" Mixed Media on Canvas
Original Still Available!

If you are a renter and want original art from a local artist, but can't fully commit to purchasing an original or want to buy multiple pieces at a time, then these print options are perfect for you! Also, if you are in love with an original but it is already sold then a canvas print is the next best thing! You can also ask the artist if they can personally add hand embellishment to the print, which adds a clear coat of texture and depth to the canvas.

'Prima Ballerina' available in various sizes in print


TOP 10 REASONS FOR COLLECTING ART - whether an Original or Print!
1. Experience an emotional connection with art 2. Support the arts in a meaningful way
3. Connect to the arts community and share with fellow enthusiasts 4. Thrill of the hunt 5. Connect with and support individual artists 6. Preserve history 7. Investment and legacy 8. Grace one’s home with beauty 9. Create social bonds
10. Enjoy benefits of lifelong learning

'November is Coming' available in various sizes in print

I am honored that you are inspired by my artwork and are considering purchasing an original piece from my collection! Please feel free to contact me by email ( to talk about any painting you would like to know more about. I would love to chat and get to know you. It's my greatest joy to feel a connection with the buyer and to know that my painting is finding a happy home to live in.


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