Mastering Print Editions: A Guide to Organizing, Tracking, and Cataloging

Alessandro Levato | August 24, 2023

Finishing Printing, photo courtesy of Mara Cozzolino.

When you are dealing with editions or print multiples, it can turn messy quickly— and not in an “inky” way.

Managing your art inventory when you work with editions has a few more added complexities than those working in all originals. 

However, print editions (prints or photographs) can play an important role in sustaining an accessible art ecosystem. Prints can be a vital part of an artist's income and also allow them to reach a wider audience. 

Beyond creating and distributing the prints, it's also important to catalog each artwork within an edition to stay organized and know where each work is located and which prints are available. 

Once you get those editions organized, you are able to track revenue and watch the value of each print increase!

Let’s take a closer look at how-tos of cataloging editions and how Artwork Archive can play a pivotal role in your art business. 


Editioned artworks help artists reach a larger audience.

Editioned artwork plays a huge factor in the art world and influences accessibility for both artists and art collectors.

A print edition refers to a limited number of reproductions of original artwork. These are created using a variety of techniques such as digital printing and photography, or traditional printmaking techniques such as woodblock, etching, monotype, and lithography.

Producing multiples allows artists to share their work with a wider audience while maintaining the exclusivity of the original piece. Artists benefit from editions by selling multiple pieces while leveraging accessibility and visibility. Editions also allow for variations and creativity within each piece—giving each reproduction its own story.


Collectors can also benefit from editions by adding depth to their collections.

While original artworks can be expensive or rare, editions offer a more affordable way to own a work of art.

Investing in limited editions gives the buyer assurance of a set multiple while maintaining exclusivity. Pieces within an edition are considered unique based on both the variations within that edition and the edition number.

Prints also diversify a collection and add depth by including varied mediums like prints. 


Limited editions, similar to paintings, tend to increase in value over time.

The prices of these editioned works differ and are connected to the sales history of other pieces within the same edition.

This arrangement offers a twofold benefit: artists have the opportunity to enhance their earnings by producing and selling multiple copies of their work, while collectors are presented with the possibility of obtaining an artwork that might have been previously sold.

Print multiples archived and organized using Artwork Archive


What are some challenges to organizing, tracking, and cataloging editions? 

With many print editions, could come many potential organizational problems.

Tracking editions can easily get confusing because so much of the piece's information is the same. Artists working in prints may have dozens, if not hundreds of prints with the same size, image, and medium. This can result in confusion about where prints are located, and which prints are available, and could even result in the loss of a sale.

Artwork Archive offers a simplified solution for artists to overcome these challenges with Edition Tracking. This involves comprehensive data choices that allow artists to create a unique record for each print, ensuring precise management.


Where can artists manage their editions?

Creating a new edition on Artwork Archive is easy and only requires you to input the default information once.

Artists can keep clear records of which prints have been sold, where, and to whom. You can differentiate the editions through options such as inventory numbers, image variation, or documentative details in the Notes section of each piece. 

Once an edition has been created, the pieces follow similar guidelines of non-editioned artwork in your archive. You can generate Certificates of Authenticity, view prints both in and out of your inventoryall while generating reports for each work's data separately. 

The best part? There is no need for duplicate input, and you only have to note the artworks' differences — if there are any.

Preview into Artwork Archive editions view.


What should artists look for in a system that can document their print editions?

Tracking editions looks a little different for every artist. That's because not everyone creates editions in the same way, or even in the same mediums.

Looking to create an edition based on one image? 

Want to take a dive into the history of a specific piece?

In Artwork Archive, no matter how you create editions and what you are looking to track, there is a solution for you.

In the Editions section of Artwork Archive, you can add details, edition totals, and whether the series is limited or open. You can also list proofs, descriptions, notes, and any other necessary information about the edition set. 

What else should you include in each record? Include details such as price, wholesale price, paper size, and framed dimensions for the edition.

You can also note the differences in variation, color, and size. If your editions are exactly similar, you can differentiate them through inventory or edition numbers, tag words, or notes. 

By viewing an edition as a whole, each piece’s recorded information will add to the entirety of the artwork just by tracking and organizing the print-multiple.


Five things to keep in mind when dealing with editions and art prints: 

  1. Pricing: Set prices that reflect the value of exclusivity. Stay up to date with Artwork Archive's Art Blog, where we share resources to help you strategize your piece value and create a plan for value. 

  2. Promotion: Spotlight your print editions to showcase your multiples around the world on Artwork Archive's Discovery Platform. 

  3. Collector Connection: Engage with an audience directly through Artwork Archive. Share techniques behind each edition in the description of the work to elevate the experience of your art.

  4. Analytics: Understand what resonates with your viewers, adapt your strategies, and see your edition sales soar.

  5. Organization: Embrace Artwork Archive’s intuitive organizational features. Categorize, tag, and filter with ease, turning messy print editions into easy inventory management.


What are the top benefits of tracking your print or art editions? 

Knowing where and when your prints are selling gives you a better insight to track your sales revenue. 

Artwork Archive artist Claire Gill said she realized quite quickly that she needed to create an inventory of her artwork. "I create limited edition prints and for each image," she said. "I produce three editions in a small, medium, and large size. There are a set number of pieces in each size edition, ranging from 10-50."

She went on to say how important it was to keep track of each of her editioned works as her art career grew. "When I started selling my work and exhibiting in different galleries I needed to record where each edition of each print was and when it was delivered."

Like many artists, Gill was trying to keep track of a wide array of information, that became unwieldy to try and remember or try and keep track of manually. 

"Was it framed or unframed? Had it sold or been returned or lost? I started to record these things on a spreadsheet, but the spreadsheet was getting bigger and bigger, and my skills were not such that I could keep track of all the information I needed to keep track of," Gill explained.

After some research, Gill finally found a system that works for her editioned works. "I wanted a system that could understand the complex needs of recording all my editions and the places they were being exhibited and sold," she said. "I found Artwork Archive did all of the things I needed and was very user-friendly.”

You can read more about Claire Gill's work and how she organizes her art business here.

With Artwork Archive, artists can organize any type of print edition and know where each piece is located. You can also engage with collectors about your editions while showcasing a broader range of pieces. 

Both artists and collectors can be confident that dedicating time to producing print multiples actively supports the art market. This is achieved through meticulous documentation, ensuring the preservation of accrued value due to the limited number of reproductions, and ultimately making art more accessible to a wider audience.


How can you get started tracking your editions? 

Users across the Artwork Archive community use our Editions Feature to maintain the organization they need. You can find examples of individuals using editions on Artwork Archive's Discovery Platform. You can also get started with a free 14-day trial to see how the platform can help you manage your editions—and, your entire art business. 

With Artwork Archive you can finally take a close look at edition inventory and find an expansive look into print multiples. 

November 5, 2023

Mono Variations

  • Submission Deadline: November 5, 2023
  • Award Info: Accepted artists will have the option to show up to 5 works from the same series online, in our digital web gallery. Digitally displaying the many pieces together will highlight the depth and breadth of the collection.
  • Eligibility: State
  • Categories: Mixed-Media/Multi-Discipline
Eligibility Info

California based.

All in one platform for artists

Here are a couple of great sites we recommend to find even more artist opportunities!


Artwork Archive | Call for Entry

Free to peruse, we feature everything from dream residencies and life-changing grants, to fun festivals, art business workshops, and competitions for some extra cash. We make it easy to search, too! Filter by opportunity type, location, event dates, eligibility, and more to find exactly what your art practice needs to flourish.


While you may know this site for its wide array of calls for shows, exhibitions, and residencies, this site also boasts a collection of grants and awards. Search through the listings at no cost which covers all the need-to-know details for applying, including entry deadline, fees, location eligibility, and more.

The Art Guide

Not sure if you want to apply through a third party, Art Guide is the free artist opportunity site for you. This call for entries website allows you to apply directly to the organization offering the grant. The list is updated daily so there'll always be a great new opportunity to pursue.

Formerly Artist Opportunity Monthly, all you need to do is sign up with your email and they send you thoroughly screened opportunities every month, including grants. AOM prides itself on ensuring each opportunity is worthwhile. A more comprehensive monthly list is offered at $5 a year.

Another site you may have heard of is According to their website, it is “the largest and most respected source for artists seeking income and exhibition opportunities.” The site may cost you a subscription fee of $20 a year to view the majority of its opportunities, but you can still browse many grants listed for free on their homepage and the @ArtDeadline Twitter account.

Curator Space

CuratorSpace is a project management toolkit for curators, organizers, galleries, and artists. It is designed to take the hassle out of managing exhibitions, competitions, fairs, and a whole lot more. Plus, they are a great site for finding art opportunities worldwide!

Re-title is a service for professional contemporary artists searching for opportunities, such as competitions, exhibitions, residencies, etc. A site for international contemporary art, this is another great site to find opportunities around the world! There’s even a map you can click on to search opportunities regionally and world clocks at the top of their site so you can submit applications on time!

Res Artist is a Worldwide Network of Arts Residencies from around the globe. The network comprises more than 700 vetted members in over 85 countries. They aim to support and connect residencies, engage and advocate the importance of residencies in today’s society by providing artists with resources and upcoming residency information.

Art Rabbit

Art Rabbit compiles a selection of international open calls and opportunities for contemporary art-related competitions, prizes, exhibitions, awards, proposals, and grants for artists, writers, and curators. They publish a selection of open calls from a pool of submissions and editorial research. Only open calls believed to offer meaningful benefits to applicants at different stages of their careers are published.

Creative Capital

Creative Capital is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to fund artists in the creation of groundbreaking new work in the visual arts, performing arts, literature, film, technology, and multidisciplinary practices, including socially-engaged work in all forms. Their pioneering model of grantmaking also provides thousands of artists with scaffolding and infrastructure support via professional development programs, networking opportunities, and educational resources.

Art Show attracts thousands of artists and art enthusiasts each day. They advertise worldwide juried shows, exhibitions, and competitions across any and all mediums. has been recognized in "Must-See Web Sites for Artists" by The Artist's Magazine and has received favorable mention in several other art publications, including American Artist, Southwest Art, Watercolor Magic, and The Pastel Journal , as well as The Wall Street Journal .

Ready to apply?

Applications can be extensive. After all, organizations need to ensure their funding will be in good hands.

Be prepared to present yourself in the best light by having your information and images in an organized manner—and avoiding the last-minute stress of scrambling to find files.

Art inventory software like Artwork Archive can help you get ready to apply for grants and opportunities without the hassle.

With Artwork Archive , you can manage jury-ready photos of your work and their inventory details, as well as generate professional documents like portfolio pages and inventory reports. If asked for a list of past exhibitions and competitions to validate your professional status, you can see your complete show history with the click of a button. Just think of the time you’ll save not having to remember or dig up all of this information!

You can even add application deadlines to the “My Schedule” feature and receive email reminders before it’s time to submit so you never miss out on these opportunities.

Best practices for applying to grants.

Add this to your Artwork Archive schedule.
Never miss an important deadline.

Plus, prepare for applications and organize
your entire art business with a free 14-day trial.

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