Everything you need to know about printing an Ancestor Family Tree

I get lots of questions about printing a family tree. To make it easy on you, I have detailed everything that I can think of in one post to help you make the most informed decision possible! Here are the topics covered:

Printing Yourself vs. Hiring Me to Print

The design fee for every family tree INCLUDES a digital copy of your tree! This means that you have the option to print the tree on your own, or have me take care of it for you. Let me help you with the pros and cons of each option and let you choose the best fit for your needs.

Reasons to Print Yourself:

  • If you live outside of the United States, we unfortunately do not offer shipping, but with a digital file, you can print locally!
  • If you are trying to meet a tight deadline, printing yourself can be extremely helpful and you can avoid expedited shipping charges.
  • On a Budget? Printing yourself in some circumstances can save you money! If this is your situation, I recommend researching where you are going to print first. Quality for quality, we are very competitively priced.

Reasons to Hire Me:

  • I am a stickler about Quality! I have spent years figuring out the perfect paper and have the best printer for the job. Ironically, printing is not my favorite part of my business (it is a lot of work), but ultimately, I can’t let go of the “final touch”. My Tree printed on our Fine Art Textured Paper is a work of art! (see the Quality Comparison section below)
  • Color Accuracy. While most places that you can go will do a great job printing, each places colors will vary from screen to print. Print with me to ensure that I have hand checked the color!
  • Connivence! Save yourself the time finding a printer.

Quality Comparison

I’ve put together a few images for you to compare. It is difficult to really see the difference in the pictures, but I hope this helps!

Textured Fine Art Paper vs. Mounted Canvas

Above I have compared our Textured Paper to a couple other papers, but we also offer Mounted Canvas and I would like to explain the difference.

  1. The Textured Paper is printed by me. I have complete control over the quality and timing.
  2. I outsource the Mounted Canvas. I do this because printing on Canvas is more complicated, when customers order Canvas, they usually have the intention of displaying it without glass and because of this, Canvas has to be coated with a protectant. This is not something that I have the capability of doing, so I outsource this.
  3. Why choose canvas with us vs. Costco or another retailer? I have hand-picked 2 companies that have proven to offer great quality and I can assure you the longevity and quality of their printing.
  4. Why choose canvas? I personally like the textured paper better, but if you prefer to hang your art framed, but without glass, canvas is the best option! Reason #2: If you would like to print larger than 24×36 (the largest size I print on paper), Canvas is the way to go, because framing larger than that with glass will make your frame crazy heavy!
  5. Last note: The canvas prints that I offer are Mounted, meaning that they are glued to an art-board. They are not gallery wrapped, which means they do need a frame. I prefer them this way because it gives it better rigidity, especially with pointing and touching fingers. BUT with larger images or if you do not wish to frame your tree, gallery wrapping can be a better option and you are welcome to request it and are happy to have it gallery wrapped instead.

Mounting vs. Not Mounting

With Textured Paper we offer it printed with or without mounting. Here are a few things to think about when choosing.

  1. Mounting is not necessary. Our paper is very very thick and usually frames well without mounting.
  2. Why mount? If you live somewhere humid, or if you would like to ensure that your paper does not warp or ripple in anyway, this is why mounting is an option!
  3. Printing large? Printing at larger sizes will increase the likelihood of rippling. If you would like to ensure that your paper does not warp or ripple, yes, mount it.
  4. If you are not sure what you would like, here are a few more thoughts to help: If you are getting your tree custom framed, your framer can give you a recommendation. Often, they offer mounting themselves! Also, if you do frame your art and it does ripple overtime, you can always take it into a framer that does mounting at a later time and they can usually correct the rippling.

Recommendations for Printing on Your Own

If you decide that printing your tree yourself is the best option, let me help you out! Here is what I have learned from a little trial and error. Hopefully it helps!

  1. Locally Owned Fine Are Printers will likely have the best quality prints and the best paper selection! The cost will be higher than your typical large retailers, but you’ll likely get personalized service and quality.
  2. Large Business printing centers will be the most budget friendly. Here are a few places you could try:
    • FeDex Kinkos (I like that they have a paper option. Paper is a truer white than photo paper, which can have a grey tint. Also, paper will not have the glare that comes with a glossy or matte photo print)
    • AlphaGraphics & Staples (I THINK that they have similar options to Kinkos)
    • Costco, Walmart, & Walgreens (They will have standard photo prints, 1 hour options are helpful too. They also may have some budget friendly Canvas options.)
  3. With any printing, I recommend looking for paper or canvas that has a true white background or a natural white background. Photo paper is the one to check, because some of those have that subtle grey that is not my favorite.

Print Sizing Guide

I thought it would be helpful to give you a little guide to help you pick a size based on the tree that you are looking at. Below are the different products that we offer and the sizing recommendations.

All sizes that we offer are standard printing sizes, meaning that you can find standard “off the shelf” frames for them, but you will want to check availability for frames before picking a print size.

Fixing a Mistake, Reprinting a Tree, or Making Additional Copies of a Tree

Mistakes happen ALL OF THE TIME. We hate that it does, but with 100+ names, 100+ dates and places, it is so understandable. Being a family historian myself, I want you to be able to fix those and get the accurate tree hanging!

I archive all customer’s original files so that if you need to correct something in the future, I can without the cost of creating your tree all over again.

CLICK HERE to order changes to an Ancestor Tree for only $5!

CLICK HERE for other changes that can be made to a previously designed tree!

Now, AFTER you fix the tree or make a change (if needed), I ONLY charge you the cost of reprinting the tree. You will never be charged the full cost of designing again.

Ordering a new print or additional copies of your tree is easy! Pick your size and purchase additional prints here. I will email you after purchase and make sure I am printing the correct tree and confirm details. Simple as that!

Printing Testimonials

Don’t only take our word for it! Check out what others have said about our print quality!