After looking at dozens of printers, considering different finish options and paper types and costs, I've finally narrowed down where to get the special edition prints made!
Why all the research, why not just go with the usual printer?
Normally this would be an easy thing to do, but I want a very specific look and feel for these prints including a printed gold border - and just as important I wanted to be able to embellish them with the same mica-metallic watercolors I used on the original paintings. These are special edition after all, so it's important to go all out!
As it turns out however, gold borders and watercolor-type papers are two things that are very difficult to put together. Either the paper was wrong and I could get the border printed, or the paper was right and the border couldn't be printed. For this, the exact look and feel of the special edition prints could come down to two versions - which is what I will be sorting out this week.
Today test prints from one shop will be ordered, and later this week I will visit in person another shop to see what they can offer. One way or another I feel I'm getting very close to what I envisioned for the prints that will only be available during the launch!
As it turns out, I happened to have a print from one of the printers on one of the papers I am considering, so I did some metallic watercolor testing on it. What do you think? I'm quite happy with this as a possible option :)
You can see a video of these test results on twitter here