Canvas has been used as a playground by painters since ancient times, and even photographers have got the knack of printing images on this material in recent years. During early years, using it in place of a paper was a big roadblock. But now, there are many techniques involved in printing pictures on canvas. Also, these days, in order to put photos on canvas, many do-it-yourself (DIY) kits are easily available.
Making photos on canvas is the process of transferring a digital image on to a canvas sheet using some photo printing technology, as opposed to by conventional hand sketching or painting. Monochrome photography to colored digital images, all can be transferred on to a canvas sheet. This print can last much longer and the material is many times more durable, which helps preserve all memorable moments that are considered invaluable and cannot be relived. Printing pictures on this material holds a distinct advantage over normal photo prints. Normal paper prints are vulnerable to sunlight, moisture, heat, and wear and tear. They do not last for more than 50 years even if tendered with the utmost care. On the other hand, photos that are printed on a canvas sheet can last for at least a hundred years.
The first prerequisite is a good quality digital camera which captures images at a sufficiently high resolution. In case you possess a hard copy of a photo, i.e., one that is printed on a conventional photographic paper, then you need to scan the image and convert it to the digitized format. If you already have a digital image, then make sure to save it in a high resolution .tiff or .png format at a resolution more than 300 dpi. Using Adobe Photoshop or any other image editor, make whatever changes you wish to make in the image.
Next, you need a canvas printer and a canvas sheet. Most of the canvas printer manufacturers also trade in canvas sheets, so you can get most of the material from a single place. Manufacturers possess a stock of various sized canvas that work best with the printers they deal in. Remember to purchase a stock of extra sheets, as successful printing may take a couple of attempts. Some people prefer to approach professionals, as this method appears to difficult. But, even if you fail a couple of times while learning, it can turn out to be a great hobby by the time you gets the knack of doing it yourself.
Now, it is time to load the sheet in the printer, but first start by printing a sample image before printing your main image. There is an option on the printer menu that says Print Sample or Print Demo. While printing the main image, it is very important to remember that canvas paper has only one printable side, so always load the sheet correctly before the final print command is given. This practice will help save cartridge ink.
Now, open the image on the computer and keep the image quality setting on the highest possible quality in the print preview option. With all settings done and with demo images getting printed according to your settings, you can proceed by printing the main image. As the photo-laden canvas comes out of the printer, give sufficient time for it to dry. Use an electric hair dryer to let the wet ink settle. With the canvas dried and the image settled, the sheet is ready to be framed on a gallery.
In case you are wondering about how much cash you need to shed, the canvas costs generally around USD 12 for an unframed 8x10 sheet to USD 95 for an unframed 30x40 sheet. In case you choose to have a framed photo canvas, it may cost you anything between USD 50-55 per sheet.
That was the process to print photographs on canvas. I am sure the process seems a bit easier now. However, if you wish to make a frame of memorable photographs and do not wish to make this a hobby, it is strongly advised that you take help of a professional.