Looking for a unique way to showcase your art? Printing on metal may be just the solution you need.

This guide explains how metal prints are made, what to know before printing on metal, and the benefits of metal vs. traditional printing materials like:

  • Unparalleled durability and longevity
  • High-definition finish
  • Vibrant colors
  • Sleek, modern design
  • Easy to hang and maintain

Learn how to create metal photo prints that live up to the hype!

What is a Metal Print and How Are They Made?

Metal prints are high-definition wall art pieces made from photographs printed on a sleek aluminum surface.

The process of printing on metal varies by the exact substrate. Dibond metal prints are made with a UV-cured ink printed directly onto the metal surface. The surface then becomes a unique design element, as the white parts of the image fall away to reveal the brushed aluminum underneath. As a result, you end up with a cool, silver metallic finish and an almost-3D effect. This makes it a great option for bold and abstract images. with a lot of white space.

ChromaLuxe dye-sub metal prints are made using a special ink that’s printed on paper and then transferred to the metal surface using heat & pressure. What makes ChromaLuxe aluminum photo panels unique is the white polymer finish, which soaks up the ink during the sublimation process. This creates custom metal prints with highly saturated and vivid colors, making them ideal for printing photos with lots of bright colors and contrasts.

Because the dye sublimation process involves infusing the image into the metal surface and heat sealing, ChromaLuxe prints are extra durable. They are much more resistant to fading, scratching, and moisture compared to art pieces made using traditional printing methods.

metal prints flower

Benefits of Metal printing

The unique, high-definition finish is a major perk of printing on Dye-Sub metals. Beyond this, here are some of the other benefits:

  • Since the image is infused into the metal surface, it results in a clear and vibrant finish that truly brings out the beauty of your photograph.
  • There are two surface/finish options to choose from (Gloss & Matte), which makes this medium suitable for people of all tastes and preferences.
  • Custom metal prints arrive ready to hang with a clean, frameless design that minimizes the hassle of having to frame the piece under glass or acrylic.
  • The frameless design also means that there’s no added cost for framing the prints. So although metal prints tend to cost a bit more than other types of art prints, you don’t need to invest in additional accessories to display them.
  • Metal is a very durable material, allowing your art to look just as great many years down the line.

ChromaLuxe Metal prints are waterproof and scratch-resistant, which further adds to their longevity and makes them extremely easy to maintain. Smudges and fingerprints can easily be wiped off with a damp cloth without having to worry about damaging the print. This also makes them more versatile, as they can be displayed in kitchens and bathrooms.


HD Ultimate Guide to Printing on Metal Cover Images

In addition to being durable, metal prints give your photos a luxurious and modern feel. Download the Ultimate Guide to Printing on Metal to get started.

3 Things You Should Know Before Printing on Metals

If you’re thinking of printing or selling metal prints of your photos, here are three things you should consider first.

1: Choice of Finish, Surface and Shape

There are several types of finishes and surfaces to choose from in metallic printing, depending on whether you choose DyeSub or UV Direct Prints. All of these options are unique in their own way, so it’s all about how you want your piece to look.

  • ChromaLuxe prints can be created with either glossy or matte finishing options.
  • Glossy finish is ideal if you want your photos to look vibrant with highly saturated colors.
  • Matte finish is perfect for a more subdued and muted look, which can help you avoid glare & create a vintage or rustic vibe.
  • For Dibond prints, any areas featuring 100% true white will reveal the silver metallic grain underneath, giving the piece a unique and industrial look.
  • The ChromaLuxe True-color surface uses a white basecoat that really brings out the colors of the photo, making it ideal for printing images with bright colors.
  • Completely customizable sizes and shapes make for truly one-of-a-kind, eye-catching metal prints, even large-format metal prints.

dibond tree sunset

2: Choice of Photo

While metal printing can complement almost every type of image, it works particularly well for specific types of photos. For starters, the image must be sharp, High Res, and high-quality so these elements really shine through on the metal surface and highlight the true beauty of the photo.

Modern-looking images featuring architecture or abstract landscape elements are ideal for Dibond UV direct printing because of the contemporary and industrial finish. If you want to produce a unique look by highlighting the metallic elements, consider photos with good contrast & bold, big shapes. So if you decide to create brushed metal prints, there’s plenty of space for the brushed aluminum surface to peek through.

The high-definition aluminum surface of ChromaLuxe gives more depth to blacks and blues, so images featuring these colors look stunning as metal print art. This makes photos with vivid blues and dark elements a great choice for this printing medium.

Printing on metal is a good option for both black and white images and photos with vibrant colors. However, you should carefully choose the right combination of photographs, panels, and finishes to create the perfect metal art print.

Dibond photo

3: Print and Panel Quality

The expertise of the print service provider and the panel quality play a critical role in the quality of the final product. This is perhaps one of the most important factors to consider with metal photo prints because finishes and photo choices are up to personal preference.

While there are plenty of metal photo panel brands, ChromaLuxe and Dibond produce the best quality metal prints. ChromaLuxe prints use heat and pressure to “fuse” the image onto the metal surface. Alternatively, Dibond prints are directly printed onto the surface and then UV-cured. Each of these options has unique benefits that make them suitable for different types of metal art prints. And by sticking to the best Brands, we assure consistency year after year. (Low-end / generic versions can fluctuate in surface quality)

So make sure you compare the metal printing quality of different companies. Many companies offer “off-brand” brushed aluminum composite panels that simply can’t hold up to the quality and durability of a ChromaLuxe or DiBond product.

The final piece can also look very different depending on the expertise of the printing service and the equipment they use. For instance, an experienced printing service will check your image file for resolution, and provide you with precise prints and high-quality finishing using top-tier metal panels and printing equipment.

It’s important to find a company that can deliver the quality of metal prints you’re looking for. Their products should be able to really bring out the best parts of your photos. 

chromaluxe sunset photot

Where to Get Your Custom Metal Prints

ArtisanHD is the go-to source for high-definition art printing with plenty of printing mediums to choose from. Our top-of-the-line printing equipment and techniques ensure that you get stunning metal art prints that match the quality of your photos.

ArtisanHD helps you create custom metal prints using top-quality metal panels. With the option to choose between Dibond UV direct prints and ChromaLuxe dye-sub prints, we help you bring your art to life.

Ready to get started print photos on metal? All you need to do is upload your files and create your own masterpiece.

Trustpilot Review ChromaluxeArtisanHD offers a variety of printing options so that you can find something that works for your space as well as five-star customer service and support. Contact us today for a free consultation. support@artisanhd.com