Do You Sign The Front of Your Prints?

Hi There,

I posted something similar to this, but wanted to post again, because the question is a bit different and I wanted to get more replies.

Do you sign the front of your prints - whether they be paper prints or canvas, etc? I am likely going to include an informational label on the back of my sold prints as well - my printed name, company name, title & subject location information. If you do not sign the front, would you sign the back - and, if you do sign the back, is that considered more acceptable, because signing the front might be considered “ruining” the print? I found a lab that will do any or all of the above for me, but was wanting to tap into others’ experience on this matter.

Thank you,


I prefer not to, because I don’t think my signature or handwriting (in the case of numbered prints) are anything but an eyesore. Plus, as a lefty, I still have to worry about smearing ink when I write. :wink:

But some customers insist, even when given the option of not having something like a limited edition signed. So I go with it and hope they remain satisfied.


Max - Thanks for your reply. How do you feel about using a “professional” logo / signature on the front, like what this company offers?

Some folks like to do that for watermarking digital images, and I believe that is the target audience of the company you linked to. A lot of my peers use watermarks that incorporate imagery and/or other design elements, beyond just a reproduction of a signature. But I believe they only do that for the web, in nearly all cases.

But I don’t really see it being useful for prints, since you’d have to either apply it in the digital workflow prior to printing, or create a literal stamp to mark your prints with the logo. In either case, I don’t see customers being as excited about something like that compared to having the artist sign the print with their own hand.


I put my initials and the month/year on the front, in a lower corner, usually in pretty small letters. I have actually had several people ASK me to put my name on the front.
I also always put a label on the back with info about the type of print, how to care for it, and info on the photo location, subject, etc, along with my name and contact info. ( I sell primarily framed prints in custom wood frames.)

Hey Genny,

Thanks for your input. I also put a label on the back with info on the photo location, subject, etc, along with my name and contact info (site & email address ). I guess until I see/hear signing as “the thing to do”, I will not sign, unless specifically requested. That said, in the very near future, I will be going out to local businesses to try to sell a number of framed / matted prints. I did sign those, on the mat itself. My main concern is whether to sign a canvas print…Tom

I sign my prints with a paint pen. Just a small signature in the bottom right of the print. I don’t think it ruins anything as long as you don’t go overboard with the size of your name. Artists have been signing work for ever. A photographic print is no different in my eyes.

I never used to sign the print and would sign the matting instead. Since I began signing the print, I’ve actualy had people say how they appreciated having the singature there.