Judging for this year’s Pride In Print Awards has delivered a strong message that the printing industry continues to build on its momentum in moving forward from the inertia imposed by the GFC of 2008.
Last year’s award entries boomed in numbers and organisers have expressed their excitement in seeing another rise in the number of entries looking to take out the coveted supreme award this year.
Sue Archibald, awards manager for Pride In Print, sees the industry making a big statement to its customers through the Award entries. She says, “We have seen the highest entry level for seven years. Numbers were up 14 per cent up on last year’s already-high entry level, which is a huge result.
“Moreover, the work quality was outstanding. It reflects a dynamic industry that is innovative and progressive.”
Convenor of Judges Symon Yendoll agrees. In his first year as convenor, he has found it satisfying and inspirational to see the power of print at work.
He says, “One of the reasons I love this industry is to see how companies continue to develop and we had great examples of boundaries being pushed to the maximum.
“It is not just about extending technical boundaries for the sake of it. The techniques shown in our entries are done to meet or exceed the expectations of the customer, and also provide the opportunities for other print buyers to see the possibilities of using these new innovations for still more customers.
“That is how print develops and gains commercial strength.”
Yendoll adds that the printing industry continues finding ways to showcase the distinctive qualities of print that no other medium can match.
He says, “We know we are competing for the marketing dollar against lots of other media and the printing industry constantly pushes itself to create new opportunities for the print buyer.
“Our judges were meticulous in judging the craftsmanship and techniques of our entries, but beyond that, examining closely the commercial application of those entries in the marketplace.
“Always, that must be the key to Pride In Print – lifting the bar of quality and finding new ways to apply print, so that our industry is seen as commercially dynamic.”
As convenor, he felt moved to see the level of professionalism and passion among fellow judges who put aside their own preferences and the interests of their own sector for the wider good of the industry. He says, “You can see the respect they have for the opinions of others, in deciding on the merits of entries.”
The Pride In Print Awards acts as the custodian for the strong tradition of craftsmanship in the industry. Yendoll especially sees real value in this tradition and respects the effort around keeping it alive. He says, “While I love the innovation shown by our evolving print industry, I also love the craftsmanship I see in the entries. To recognise the value of craft quality is I think a tip of the hat to the printers of the past as well as to the print industry of the future.
“When people see the winning entries on Award Night and in the Pride In Print Tabloid, I think you will agree: there is still plenty of Power in Print.”
The Pride In Print Awards were decided as we went to press. Look for a big awards story in the next issue of New Zealand Printer.