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Art Prints Vs. Posters

Art Prints Vs. Posters

When shopping for prints you’ll come across a wide range of price points, even for similar sized prints. If you aren’t familiar with different materials and processes, it can be difficult to understand why two prints of the same size are priced so differently, and you might be inclined to simply opt for the less expensive print. Before you do that, we encourage you to look into the factors that affect print cost. 

Quality of Materials

Prints that are priced very cheaply are generally at that price point because they are made with cheap materials. These lower end materials will not produce high quality prints, and will not last as long as prints made with higher quality materials. If you want a high quality print that will look brand new for a lifetime,

Two Paper Prints

Museum Quality

All of the paper and canvas we use at Old Town Print Gallery are museum quality materials. These are heavyweight materials that are capable of producing sharp, vibrant prints of a higher quality that cheaper materials. While it’s more of an investment, the quality of museum-quality prints is worth the cost in the long run. These prints will last a lifetime, and will look as beautiful in 50 years as it did the day you bought it.


If you want your prints to last for years to come without damage, fading, or yellowing, you’ll want to invest in higher quality prints at a higher cost. Cheaper materials simply aren't going to last as long as higher end materials.

Stronger Materials 

The weight of the paper is a good indicator of overall print quality. Cheap papers are typically thin, poster style papers, whereas high quality papers are heavier weight, sturdy papers. Thin papers are much more prone to damage, as they are easily dented, dinged, and creased. Our heavyweight papers are not as easily damaged, ensuring your prints stay pristine longer.

A chart showing the archival ratings of the materials used by Old Town Print Gallery


All of the materials we use for our prints are archival, rated to last over 100 years without fading or discoloration. Cheaper, poster style prints will not carry this same guarantee, and you may find yourself needing to replace a faded or discolored print sooner than expected.


The skill and craftsmanship of the printmaker will have an impact on the final price as well. A skilled printmaker taking great care to produce high quality prints will charge more for their work than someone simply trying to maximize output at the expense of quality. This care and attention is worth paying more for.

Quality Checks 

Before our prints get packaged to ship to you we inspect each print to make sure there are no flaws in the paper or flakes in the printed area. If there are flaws we either carefully fix the issue, or reprint if that isn’t possible. We do this to ensure that the print you receive is in perfect condition. Cheaply priced prints are not undergoing this same process, they are simply being mass produced and sold quickly, regardless of individual quality. 

Two Canvas Prints

Attention to Detail

We pay attention to and care about even the smallest details when making our prints. From the images we choose, to the digital restoration work, to the final printing, nothing is overlooked. This process takes time, but is essential to produce the highest quality prints. When you come across prints at a higher price point, before passing on, consider the time and attention that went into producing those prints, rather than the cheaper prints. 

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