Q. Is PremierArt and Premier Imaging Products the same?

A. PremierArt is the brand name for our high end art papers and canvas as well as our premium line of coatings. Premier Imaging Products is the company name.

Q. Can I buy directly from Premier?

A. No. Premier sells through a network of dealers. Please see our “Where to Buy” section, from any menu on our web site for a dealer near you.

PremierArt Coatings

Q. Do I need to coat my print?

A. Ink jet media has a receiver layer on the top of the substrate that acts like a sponge. Ink jet inks are water based, and when sprayed into the receiver layer, the layer absorbs the ink. Even when an image is on the media, the receiver layer still acts like a sponge, and will absorb all moisture, fingerprint oils and atmospheric contaminants.

Therefore we strongly recommend to either frame an ink jet print under glass or seal the print with PremierArt Print Shield or PremierArt Eco Print Shield.

Q. What is the difference between lacquer (solvent) based and aqueous (water) based coatings?

A. A simple way of visualizing the differences are the difference between oil based paint and latex based paint. Oil based paint needs paint thinner for cleanup, while latex based paint can be cleaned up with soapy water.

A more comprehensive explanation is the base of a lacquer base coating is usually derived from petroleum or alcohol, while aqueous based solutions are made with water as the main ingredient. Any time you can use water as a base there are environmental advantages, as well as safety considerations.

Q. Can I laminate my print?

A. Lamination is designed for signage and outdoor use where it is used to protect the print from the elements. Laminated prints have a limited lifespan, usually less than 5 years.

If you are making a fine art print or a photograph, then coatings are your best bet for longevity. Laminating a cotton print defeats the purpose of using a long life cotton material. It will yellow within 5 years.

PremierArt Media

Q. What is the difference between cotton paper and Alpha Cellulous paper?

A. Alpha Cellulous paper is made from wood pulp that has been processed to remove everything but the cellulous. The process used to remove the lignins and other impurities creates industrial wastes. The final product is stable and acid free.

Cotton paper is naturally acid and lignin free. It is 10 times stronger than pulp papers, and is environmentally friendly in both processing and as a renewable resource. All major paper currencies are made on cotton paper because of their durability in handling. Most art papers and canvas are made from cotton, thus their use in the art and fine art markets, where pieces are expected to last 500 years or more.

Q. Why are some papers dry off the printer while others take minutes to hours to dry?

A. There are basically 2 technologies used in high end papers, swellable and micropore. Swellable is the older technology used with the first Encad and HP thermal printers. A gelatin layer was used to “swell” when the water based ink made contact, then dried to form a protective barrier form atmospheric contaminants. Unfortunately, the gelatin is susceptible to all forms of moisture, and are unstable in a high humidity environment, or even a sweaty finger will ruin the print.

With the obvious disadvantage of swellable papers evident, research progressed from gelatin to silica. The silica coatings formed small pores that trapped the ink, letting the water evaporate quickly. This led to the “Instant Dry” and “Water Resistant” media. Most media today are micropore except for some low end signage papers that are cost effective. Note, there is one major disadvantage with instant dry papers, atmospheric contaminants. These coatings offer no protection from ozone or other airborne contaminants.

Thus if you are using a swellable or instant dry media, your print still needs protection. PremierArt offers coatings for both swellable and micropore media.