iCanvas may not be a household name when it comes to art printing, but they certainly get the job done. The company has carved a niche for itself by remaining consistent in quality and providing free shipping services. Their prices are also pretty reasonable although they don’t give you the option to pick up your canvas the same day you order it. That’s because the company has stuck to the tradition of handcrafting which is a bit time-consuming.
How It Works
To begin with, iCanvas has a library of over 80,000 ready-to-print images. So, you only need to explore their rich library and choose the image that you’d like printed. And if you’re interested in getting a custom-made art, all you’d need to do is upload the image.
So, you’ll need to begin by setting up a user account. This provides you with an interactive interface which enables you to keep track of everything.
As we’ve mentioned, there’s an upload option which enables you to get photos from your hard drive printed. But there are some conditions for that.
First, your photos have to be of extremely great quality to be accepted. In fact, the company recommends that the image file should be at least 500KB and either in jpg, png, gif, pdf or tiff formats.
If your image meets the criteria, it will be handed over to an artist who will enhance it and prepare it for the final printing process. But before that happens, they’ll get back to you for the proofing process. This usually happens in less than 2 business days of placing the order.
Once satisfied, the printing process can commence. It generally takes about 7 days for the canvas to be sent to you. That said, we noticed that the waiting period tends to get longer during peak seasons such as Cyber Monday, Black Friday and the festive seasons.
What to expect from iCanvas Services
A typical iCanvas description may sound good on paper, but what exactly can you expect in terms of quality? Well, to begin with, the order arrives in a well-made cardboard, complete with foam corners. You also get screws and instructions on how to display it on the wall. Their print results are nearly picture-perfect and that’s because they use high-quality canvas. The frame is made from kiln dried North American pine. So, to be honest, we were more than impressed with the kind of quality this company has to offer.
1. Natural Images
The images look quite natural unlike what you’re likely to get from other companies out there. As you know, complaints of oversaturated images that lack crucial details are quite common out there. On the contrary, the iCanvas prints are quite vivid – they present you with perfect detail and color.
2. Streamlined Ordering & Returns Process
Yet another thing that makes this company a great one for anyone looking for quality images is that they have a highly streamlined process of buying prints. You only need to create an account once – it’s that simple. Most image designs have already been done for you and the only thing you’d need to do is place an order. Their customer support is really good although they take time to respond on weekends and public holidays. Most importantly, their prices are quite reasonable.
3. Attention to Detail
Almost any other photo printing company can print canvases but one thing that separates the best from the rest is the ability to remain consistent in quality. This particular company seems keen on that. Indeed, they not only deliver the printed images to you but also provide you with sketcher keys on the back which you can use to tighten the canvas in case it loosens. Besides that, they also provide you with screws and hanging instructions. In other words, there are no gray areas when it comes to transacting with this art printing company.
Pricing and Starting Up
A typical 12inch x 12inch artwork with a .75-inch depth would cost you some $70. The price rises significantly to $90 for the 18inch x 18inch and $230 for the 37inch x 37inch images. Please note that the prices may vary from season to season. That’s because the company often gives out discounted prices especially to folks with coupon codes. It’s also worth keeping in mind that iCanvas actually offers free nationwide shipping – but this is only available to the 48 contiguous states of the US.
As far as pricing is concerned, we think that this service is slightly pricier than average. But considering their attention to detail and the fact that each print is handmade, we think that the prices are justified.
One feature that drew our attention to this site is the Gift Guide platform. Not sure what gift to send him or her? You simply need to pop into this section of the website for some ideas. This can go a long way in helping you make solid decisions especially given the fact that this site has over 80,000 photos which would be a little bit too much to analyze in one go.
That said, we don’t like the fact that their site isn’t intricately connected with social media. For instance, one needs to download a social media photo just to upload it to this site. In the future, we think it would be a good idea for them to introduce a feature that enables one to upload images from Facebook or Instagram.
We’d also wish to see this site introduce a Group Room feature. That way, in case you missed some shots of your daughter’s graduation ceremony or the double rainbow at Hawaii, you could get an opportunity to see what other users have uploaded on their albums and use it instead.
A group room feature allows one to connect with family and friends. And it’s unfortunate to see that iCanvas is yet to consider adding this feature on their menu.
But that said, everything else about their site seems perfect. The checkout process is quite well-thought-out and secure. You can pay using either your credit card or Paypal.
Support & Shipping
It’s great to see that this platform has introduced quite a number of support features. These include an email address, phone line, and live chat. They also have an incredible FAQ database. The guys manning their customer support desk also seem to love their job – they normally respond fast and courteously.
One thing we really can’t help but love about iCanvas is that they’re a one-stop shop. Not many other digital photo printing services have such a rich and dynamic database. Plus you still have the freedom to print your favorite images by uploading them directly.
On top of that, they have an iron-clad, 60-day money back guarantee. If you don’t like the image, you simply need to ship it back to them and they’ll refund your cash but with 30% less. What actually stuns us is that the company is always ready to stand behind the quality of their products – and that’s a really good thing.
Pros of using iCanvas
- Quality Services: Everything from the ordering process to the delivery and inquiries are professionally handled.
- Print Quality: We’d give them a 5-star rating for a job well done in regard to the ability to transfer what one sees on their computer to the canvas.
- Free Shipping: To make up for their slightly higher than average prices, they offer free shipping services throughout the contiguous US.
- They Inspect: All their orders are inspected to ensure that there are no mishaps, plus their artists always sign off their work which ensures you only get what’s best for you.
- Great Packaging: Although the boxes they use for shipping are unbranded, they’re generally well-made plus foam corners are introduced to prevent damage.
- Free Hardware: All canvas prints come with wooden frames, hanging screws, sketcher keys, and instructions on how to display them.
- Frequent Discounts: You can always get more value for your money by taking advantage of their coupon codes, gift cards, and seasonal site-wide offers.
- User-Friendly Website: Their website loads fast and has a friendly user interface plus if you create an account, you won’t need to enter your personal details every time you want to place an order.
- Proofing Services: We generally recommend that all canvas printing companies should introduce a proofing mechanism to reduce discrepancies and, indeed, we’re glad that iCanvas offers this useful service.
- Editing Services: They do offer professional editing services to make sure that the quality of services remains consistent.
- File Format: They don’t support RAW image format which is becoming quite common in modern-day cameras.
- Group Room Feature: This site lacks this handy feature that can really be helpful especially for anyone looking to upload custom photos that capture unique moments, otherwise this site seems hell-bent on providing generic, ready-made prints instead.
- Pricing: Their services are comparatively expensive compared to what other printers charge although here you get slightly better quality & handmade prints.
iCanvas has a few feathers in its cap, but don’t expect any bells and whistles from their website. Their packaging is quite good and image quality is beyond reproach. They generally seem like good guys to work with – 7.5/10 is the overall score we’d give them.