Follow the Leaders ... If You Can
The saying "steal smart" has always been one of my favorites. It just makes sense. If someone has a great idea that works, and it can be applied to your career, your business or your life, why not apply it?
A good opportunity to "steal smart" presents itself in this issue. It's all about the very best in the industry: the winners of the 18th Annual Gold Ink Awards and the inductees to the 2005 PrintMedia Hall of Fame.
Let's start with the Gold Ink Awards competition. It was my second year witnessing the judging process and the absolutely meticulous job the judges do of examining—and I do mean examining—each piece. They suffer strained eyes and aching necks searching for even the slightest flaws and award only perfection. And because the competition was stiffer than ever, the winners of this year's competition are truly exemplary pieces of the very best in print.
From gold to pewter, every award given out is a testament to the hard work and attention to detail that went into it. It shows pride of craftsmanship, a concept some have suggested no longer exists. Technological advancements surely have a hand in the larger number of especially high-quality entries, but print still requires a human touch to ensure every last detail is in place and no fluctuations occur throughout press runs. And many of the creative ideas behind winning pieces are inspiring in their own right and quite difficult to achieve in manufacturing.
So, it couldn't hurt to look closely at the creativity and the craftsmanship of the winners, even though reprinting them here on the pages of this issue just doesn't do them justice.
We also cannot do justice to the inductees to this year's Hall of Fame in such a limited space. Each has decades of experience in this industry, so trying to condense their histories into one-page profiles was a challenge, to say the least.
This year's inductees—Dora Braschi Cardinale, Anthony Crouch, Ken Lantz and Barry Meinerth—are among the industry's most accomplished professionals. And if you look closely, you can see some common threads that link them together in their achievements and what makes them leaders whose paths few will be able to follow: passion for print, enthusiasm for their work and their companies, loyalty to their companies, and a willingness to share their knowledge and experience with their peers. (Not to mention the skill they bring to their work.)
Congratulations to the Hall of Famers, and to all of you whose work graces the pages of this issue … You have done the industry proud.