Are Canvas Prints Tacky?

Are Canvas Prints Tacky? (Do Canvas Prints Look Good?)

We all know that it’s really a matter of personal taste when it comes to judging if canvas prints are tacky.


What does the general public think?

With 12 years of experience as both an artist and an art curator, I’ve heard A LOT of opinions on this subject. And, people’s opinions of canvas prints seem to be greatly influenced by two main things:

  1. The quality of the materials (canvas, inks, and stretcher bars)
  2. Whether the image on the canvas print is a photo or handmade artwork (like a painting, digital illustration, or sketch).

If you’re like me, you’ve seen some really low-quality, washed-out, floppy canvas art prints in stores before.

In my opinion, those are tacky.

But then, on the other side of the spectrum, there are some really high-quality canvas prints that will impress almost anyone.

Last fall, I remember going to my friend’s house and I saw 3 new pieces of artwork on her wall. I had to get really close just to see if these were prints or original paintings.

These canvas prints were from iCanvas, an e-commerce site that sells super inexpensive (but high-quality) canvas prints. They were beautiful, really made her living room cozy, and they were the opposite of tacky!

Click here to see the #1 TRENDING PRINT on iCanvas – updated daily!

Are Photos Printed on Canvas Tacky?

From Paris with Love by Chelsea Victoria (Available at iCanvas)

When it comes to photography, especially close-ups of people or animals, the popular opinion seems to be that canvas prints are often tacky.

And I have to admit that, for some reason, just the thought of a family portrait printed on a canvas makes me cringe.

Overall, I think it’s a good rule of thumb that photographs, especially those that focus on people or animals, are best when printed on some kind of photographic paper or fine art paper and framed.

Usually, these types of photos were meant to have most of their details and some of their sharpness shared with the viewer.

The texture of a canvas will usually not show the finer details and sharpness of an image compared to a photographic print.

On the other hand, I think that an artistic photograph can look great on canvas. For example, a canvas print of the Eiffel tower, a calming beach scene, or flowers can be a beautiful addition to your home or office. In most of these cases, the details do not seem to be missed at all.

Is Artwork Printed on Canvas Tacky?

I think that canvas prints are best when the printed image is of a handmade piece of art like a painting, a sketch, or a digital illustration.

Canvas prints are great for those of us who are on a tight budget because they usually cost much less than original paintings or traditional framed prints.

Are Prints of Famous Paintings Tacky?

Most of us don’t have millions of dollars to buy a Vincent van Gogh painting, so a canvas print of his work (iCanvas) is a great alternative.

And if it was stretched and framed correctly, and the colors are true to the original painting, a canvas print can really add style to your walls.

The best part about canvas prints?

They won’t show any glare and reflection like most framed prints do.

Cheapest Places to Buy Top-Quality Canvas Prints

When it comes to buying inexpensive, high-quality canvas prints, I really like iCanvas because the prices are just so amazing and it’s hard to beat their free shipping service in the United States.

iCanvas is also my favorite place to get photos printed on canvas.

If you’re looking to buy unique canvas prints directly from artists from around the world, I would definitely check out Etsy or Amazon Handmade. These are also the perfect spots to find customizable prints for those who seem to have everything.

For your office or anybody looking to chase after their dreams, I would head over to Inktuitive. They have the best inspirational and motivational canvas prints online.

Another place I enjoy buying canvas prints is Minted. They’re a little more expensive, but the quality is excellent and all their prints are limited editions, which increases their value.

For the rest of the canvas prints I buy, especially when you’re looking for art with such a specific, hard-to-find theme, I definitely go to Society6 and Redbubble.

So go ahead and buy canvas prints, support independent artists, and (most importantly) HAVE FUN shopping!