September 23, 2020 — The Great Lakes Graphics Association (GLGA) revealed the top winners of their 2020 Graphics Excellence Awards (GEAs) during a Virtual Celebration on September 23, 2020.
The Celebration is the culmination of the annual GEAs competition, which recognizes companies throughout Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin for superb craftsmanship in the design, creation and production of outstanding printed projects they produce for their customers. This year, in lieu of in-person ceremonies, the winners were honored at an online Celebration presented on YouTube.
Best of Show, the competition’s highest honor, was awarded to Ace Graphics of Naperville, Illinois, for their entry in the Booklets (4 or more colors) category entitled OX Brand Book. One judge commented that the piece uses “some of the best imaginative geometry in the competition.”
First Runner-Up was awarded to LCP of Waukegan, Illinois, for their piece entitled The Middleby Corp – LaCornue Chip Selector in the They Said It Couldn’t Be Done category. Suttle-Straus, Waunakee, Wisconsin, won Second Runner-Up accolades for their Big Ass Fans Booklet, also from the Booklets (4 or more colors) category.
LCP claimed Best of Illinois honors with their Legent Box in the Media Kits category; Best of Indiana went to World Arts Printing, Spencer, Indiana, for IU Bicentennial Report in the Business and Annual Reports category; and Color Ink of Sussex, Wisconsin, took Best of Wisconsin honors with their Baxter Portugal Sales Incentive Kit in the Digital Packaging category.
The GEAs competition was judged over two days in March 2020 shortly before the pandemic outbreak became widespread. The contenders were evaluated by a panel of outside graphics experts, who collectively have more than 80 years of print, finishing and converting experience.
The exceptional entries represented a full spectrum of printing and finishing processes, from sheetfed and web to digital, lithography and flexo. Competitors could show their skills in 100 categories which included postpress and finishing techniques such as embossing, die cutting, folding, and binding; specialty and large format printing; packaging and labels; environmentally sound materials; special innovations; and products such as books, calendars, and posters.
The Celebration usually is held simultaneously at locations in Illinois and Wisconsin in May. However, out of concern for the health and safety of the attendees, the in-person events had to be first postponed and then ultimately cancelled. In moving the Celebration to an online event, these exceptional pieces finally received their well-deserved recognition.
Joseph Lyman, president of GLGA, is extremely proud of the quality of work submitted in the 2020 GEAs competition and the results it produced. “As one of the largest regional graphic competitions in North America with more than 550 submissions representing 62 companies, the GEAs are one of most recognized programs GLGA manages throughout the year,” Lyman said.
This year, 89 percent of companies submitting projects won either a Gutenberg (Best of Category) or a Best of Division award. “This has been one of our best years ever in demonstrating the high level of parity there is among printers, finishers and converters located throughout Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin,” Lyman said. “We are extremely proud to represent such outstanding print organizations.”