Poster Collecting Teminology
Signed By The Artist - A poster or other artwork that has been hand signed by the artist who created it. A signed poster is usually more valuable than an unsigned one.
Plate Signed - When an artist creates a poster or other artwork it is signed, generally at the bottom. When the original artwork is printed the signature is reproduced as part of the printed work.
Limited edition - A poster is printed with a predetermined number of prints in the run.
Signed and Numbered Limited Edition - A poster that is printed with a predetermined number of prints in the run. The posters are hand signed by the artist and consecutively numbered ( 1/400, 2/400 etc. )
Color Variant - A variation of a poster that has been printed using one or more different colors of ink. A variant may also exist when a poster is printed on 2 different types of paper.
Artists Proof - ( A/P ) Artists proofs are sometimes produced in addition to a regular print edition. They are produced in small numbers and are usually signed by the artist. They may also be numbered.
Offset Printing - (Also known as offset lithography) The image to be printed is transferred onto a metal printing plate. The plate then transfers ink to a rubber covered cylinder which "offsets" the ink to the paper.
Silkscreen - A poster or print created by the silkscreen printing process. Silkscreen posters often contain subtle nuances that are not visible on a JPEG image; they must be viewed in person to be fully appreciated.
Original Art - The original artwork whether a painting, digital image, or several laser or hand created sheets (called color separations) that overlap together to form the final image. This original artwork is then used to create a printing plate for offset printing, or a film positive for silk screen printing.
Original - This is the original or first printing of a poster. Some posters are reprinted as an authorized reprint at a later date. This does not hold true for limited edition prints, as these will never be printed again.
Bootleg - An unauthorized printing of a poster. Also known as a Pirate printing.
Frame Out - Describes the process whereby small flaws on the corner or border of a poster will not be visible when framed.
Poster Preservation Terminology
Archival - Pertains to a material which is suitable for long term storage.
Archival Storage - Storage in archival materials. An archival material used for poster storage should be acid free, alkaline buffered, or an inert product such as Mylar D or Melinex 516.
Acid - Free - Papers or boards made of 100% rag (cotton or linen ) or alpha cellulose.
Acid Migration - The movement of acids, from acidic materials to those which are less acidic. You must not store your posters in direct contact with one another.
Off Gassing - ( Also called out gassing ) Every environment contains oxidizing gasses created by degrading organic products. This is why wood is unsuitable for archival storage. Paper is made from wood or other organic products ( such as hemp ), and as such is subject to decomposistion.
Archival Sleeve - Archival storage sleeves or envelopes made of inert Mylar D or Melinex 516.
Buffered Tissue Paper - Buffered tissue has a pH of 8.5 and a calcium carbonate buffer. It is available in rolls or sheets.
pH - A scale that measures units of acidity and alkalinity. 0 - 6 is acidic, 7 is nuetral, 8 - 14 is alkaline.
Conservation Grade Glazing - Glass or acrylic used in framing which will filter out up to 98% of damaging ultraviolet rays.