A serigraph, also known as a silk screen, is generally considered to be the highest quality of hand-pulled reproduction available. A screen is produced for each color or shade being used (sometimes as many as 100 screens); each screen is than hand-applied to every sheet of paper. Ink is spread on the top and forced through each screen onto the paper. Sometimes an artist will finish the work by hand painting some areas. Serigraphs are generally much higher in price than lithographs that are mechanically reproduced but the cost is justified by the vibrancy of colors and overall quality of the finished piece. A mixed-media serigraph, known for its three-dimensional quality, is a combination of a serigraph and an offset lithograph and is generally less expensive.
A limited-edition is a series of identical reproductions which are limited to a one-time printing of a predetermined number of impressions. This guarantees that only a specific number of images are created in the size, style, and medium indicated. Each reproduction is signed and numbered by the artist who owns the copyright.
Also known as an A/P, artist proofs are prints outside the numbered edition. Generally the property of the artist, they are usually limited to 10% of the edition and are equal in quality to the numbered edition. Typically the first step in creating a limited-edition print is the creation of the "artist proofs." The artist must approve these before the printer prepares to print the numbered edition. Artist's proofs usually sell for a higher price than the other impressions in the edition.