Open edition and limited edition prints

What is the difference between open edition and limited edition prints you may ask. The major differences in print pricing lies between an open edition and limited edition print.

Open edition prints

Open edition prints have no limit on its print run, or and frequency of print runs, the print can be created in the thousands, tens of thousands, or more.

While it costs less, there is absolutely nothing “wrong” with buying an open edition print you like, as it is a very affordable means of getting the art you enjoy on your walls. Open edition prints can be printed on paper or canvas, and the quality of the substrate depends upon the substrate in which the artist has chosen to release the prints on.

Limited edition prints

A limited edition print is so named because its limited print run (the number of prints created and sold — is limited to a specific number) for example 50.

Each print run is determined by size and other qualifying factors; for example, the artist may have a limited edition run of an image in a A4 size on paper, another run of A3 on paper, a third run of A3 on premium canvas.

If you purchase the 7th print sold in the A4 paper print run, then somewhere on the print will be written (generally in pencil, since this is difficult to forge) 7/50, which indicates that your print is the 7th piece out of a total of 50 to be created in the print run.

The print may or may not be signed by the artist, if signed by the artist it will have increased value. The print may or may not include a Certificate of Authenticity, a piece of paper or form that lists the run size, the number of your print in the print run, information on inks and paper, the date that the print was created and the original artists name.

A signed limited edition print of archival quality, and accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity will cost more than an open edition print (but significantly less than the original artwork), because it has been in more direct contact with the artist.