Gold aplenty at National Print Awards

The Palladium at Melbourneís Crown Casino was recently host to Australian printingís night of nights, the annual National Print Awards. On display was the industryís best and finest, underlining their commitment to creativity and high-quality production.

In total, 40 gold medals were awarding to what was a hotly contested field where all were deserving of the coveted prize, including special award categories for Printing by an Apprentice, Excellence in Craft and Most Creative Use of Photography.

The Hanna Group and the Printing Industries Association of Australia, particularly their South Australian branch, came up trumps, receiving seven awards across a variety of fields. PMP also impressed, receiving six awards for work produced across a number of its divisions while STS Creative walked away with five big reasons to smile.

According to National Print Awards chairman Alf Carrigan, the last 12 months have seen a great change in the format of the National Print Awards and he is greatly pleased with the amount of support shown by the turnout and the high-standard of work submitted. He sees this support as a testament to all the hard work that has been put into the show by the organisers.

ìThe committee members and myself are extremely proud that we have received so much support from the industry, from the quality of the entries to the overwhelming support of our new initiatives,î says Carrigan.

ìThere has been a groundswell of support for these new initiatives, which have been aimed at encouraging participation from all levels of the industry. This has been reflected in the quality of the prizewinners here tonight.î

Carrigan also paid homage to Perth-based Pilpel Printing Company, who he says has benefited greatly from the new initiatives, walking away with a gold and bronze medal for their two and three colour printing, and stationary submissions, their only two submissions for the night.

Stand out award recipients were the Lilyfield Group which was awarded the Agfa Award for Most Creative Use of Photography, and Chris Irtem of Techprint Solutions who received the Australian Paper Printing by an Apprentice Award.

One work stood out from the rest of the pack. Photography book Shades of Ochre, a collection of South Australian landscapes photographed by Stavros Pippos and printed by van Gastel Printing, picked up the coveted Heidelberg Australia Award for Excellence in Craft. What makes this award special for managing director Jack van Gastel is that it came down to persistence. Van Gastel convinced the bookís publisher to gave him an opportunity to print the book after he examined the first edition and felt that it failed to live up to the high standards it deserved.

ìWhen I attended Stavros Pipposí exhibition I noticed that the original photos on the wall looked nothing like the book. The reproductions were flat and the colours had lost their vibrancy and sharpness,î says van Gastel.

ìI was determined to demonstrate we could do a better job and this award is a testament to that.

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