Acrylic Print: Quick Links
What Is an Acrylic Print? (What Do They Look Like?)
Basically, an acrylic print looks like a photograph that’s been sandwiched between a thick piece of solid transparent plastic (in the front) and some kind of backing (to the back). Or, sometimes the photograph is sandwiched in between two pieces of clear acrylic.
So, from a side angle of an acrylic print, you’ll see it’s thicker than most other kinds of prints you can buy today.
If the acrylic prints are made properly, I find they look absolutely stunning! And if you want really sharp lines and tons of detail in your image, this type of print is a really great choice!
An acrylic print is also sometimes called acrylic block, acrylic face, or photo mount. And, the acrylic is sometimes also called Plexiglass, Lucite, or Perspex (all brand names for acrylic resin).
Here is how a high-quality acrylic print is made:
First, a photograph or artwork is printed on photographic paper. I prefer metallic photographic paper, like the one they use for the acrylic blocks at Redbubble (these are trending, mini versions of acrylic prints you normally find) because the colors look more vibrant.
That photographic paper is usually then face-mounted to a sheet of acrylic.
Acrylic face mounting (or sometimes called back mounting) is a process that involves applying a clear double-sided adhesive sheet to the top of a photograph and then sticking the print to acrylic (usually called Plexiglass).
Once the print is stuck to the acrylic, a backing material (like Dibond or Sintra) is adhered to the back of the print for protection. The backing material is usually black, white, or transparent (it all depends on what looks best for the artwork or photograph).
If the acrylic print is going to be hung to a wall, aluminum standoffs (see image on Amazon) are usually used to attach the acrylic frame to the wall.
Are Acrylic Prints Shiny?
Acrylic prints have a really nice smooth, shiny finish that I find looks very fashionable. An acrylic print is definitely a good choice if you are decorating a home or office that has a sleek and contemporary feel to it.
Also, because of its glossy material, it really makes the image look sharp and the colors look rich and vibrant.
Are Acrylic Prints Heavy?
Acrylic prints are one of the heaviest pieces of artwork you can buy, but they’re not overly heavy. They’re usually just as heavy as a framed art print and you can still easily mount them to your walls.
Depending on the thickness of the acrylic resin, acrylic prints can weigh anywhere from 1-4 lbs. It’s rare to find acrylic prints, even the largest ones, to weigh more than 6 lbs.
Are Acrylic Prints Top-Quality?
If made correctly, acrylic prints are completely top-quality!
Not only do they have a sleek, contemporary look to them, they can also save you money since you don’t need to frame them.
How Long Do Acrylic Prints Last?
If an acrylic print is done right, they’ll use archival paper and archival inks which will guarantee color permanence (no fading over time).
Using archival materials means that the acrylic print will last a VERY long time, like 100 years (no joke).
Are Acrylic Prints Waterproof?
Whether or not acrylic prints are waterproof is debatable (maybe I wouldn’t submerge my acrylic prints under continuous water), but they’re absolutely water-resistant!
Because these prints have an acrylic surface on top, you can totally hang one of these in your bathroom without having it ruined by the humidity!
So now that you know what acrylic prints are, go ahead and buy art (my 2 favorite spots for finding affordable acrylic prints are Etsy and Redbubble), support independent artists, and HAVE FUN shopping!