Aldo Comfort and Fit Packaging

Design firm: The Aldo Group, Inc., Montréal
Creative director: Douglas Bensadoun
Art director: Gerard Cleal
Designer: Danielle Autran
Client: Aldo

Chicago 2016 Identity System

Design firm: VSA Partners, Inc, Chicago
Creative directors: Dana Arnett, Jamie Koval
Designers: VSA Partners
Client: Chicago 2016 Committee

IZZE You’ll Love What’s Inside Campaign

Design firm: Vermilion, Inc., Boulder, Colorado Creative director: Paul DesRosiers
Designers: Leslie Blanton, Kevin Bonner, Lorena Fox, Karen Tan
Photographer: Souders Studios
Programmers: Codey Christensen, Alan Dague-Greene, Sean McKibben, Nate Scavezze, Jameson Watts
Copywriter: Paul DesRosiers
Project manager: Ani Hulse
Client: IZZE Beverage Co.

Slice of Summer Tissue Box

Design firm: Kimberly-Clark, Neenah, Wisconsin
Creative director: Christine Mau
Art director: Jennifer Brock
Illustrator: Hiroko Sanders
Client: Kleenex

Lida Baday Spring 2010 Brochure

Design firm: Concrete Design Communications, Inc., Toronto
Art directors: Diti Katona, John Pylypczak
Designer: Melatan Riden
Photographer: Chris Nicholls
Client: Lida Baday

25 Films by Akira Kurosawa Box

Design firm: Rodrigo Corral Design, New York
Creative director: Sarah Habibi
Client: Criterion

Measure Me Stick

Design firm: Studio 1 a.m., Chicago
Designers: Joerg Becker, Joshua Enck, Donna Piacenza, Jody Work
Client: Studio 1 a.m

From Memory to Action: Meeting the Challenge of Genocide Exhibition

Design firm: C&G Partners, New York
Creative directors: Jonathan Alger; Jared Schiffman, Phillip Tiongson (Potion)
Art directors: Jonathan Alger, Emanuela Frigerio
Designers: Daniel Fouad, Pamela Jacobson, Laura Koo, Sarah Pokora
Interactive designers: Young Cho, Jeff LeBlanc, Caroline Oh, Jared Schiffman, Phillip Tiongson (Potion); Justin Manor, David Small (Small Design)
Client: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Boralex 2008 Annual Report

Design firm: Paprika, Montréal
Creative director: Louis Gagnon
Art director: Rene Clement
Designer: Rene Clement
Photographers: Raphael Helle, Monic Richard
Copywriter: Lefebvre Financial Communciations, Inc.
Project manager: Jean Doyon
Printer: Transcontinental Litho Acme
Client: Boralex


Great Design Requires Great Clients

The AIGA 365 Design Competition showcases design work from 2009. And it's a testament to client partnerships.

It's the Oscars of American graphic design. 2300 entries. 16 judges. 125 winners. All that's missing are the sequins and Hollywood spotlights but for many designers, the AIGA's 365 Design Competition is every bit as exciting.

AIGA, the professional association for design has, for 40 years, chronicled the changing field of communication design in an annual awards exhibition. This year's categories include Branding, Informing, Entertaining, Experimenting, Promoting, and Packaging. The work shown is from around the world and takes shape as motion graphics, interactive experiences, magazines, packaging and environmental design. Winning entries present the year's best eye candy for designers and innovative production techniques that celebrate the intelligence and craft of the profession.

The majority of awards in the 2010 show are for relatively small businesses or institutions, but only compared to winning entries for corporate giants like Target, Coca Cola, and Kleenex. Surprisingly absent are entries from heavy industry, manufacturing, government, banking, healthcare and other potent engines of our economy. Are there no design champions in these sectors? Did those submissions not pass the tough scrutiny of the jury charged with selecting designs that "demonstrate a masterful combination of effectiveness and aesthetics?"

I know they are out there. Maybe next year.

If there were a special citation, it should be awarded to the brave clients who champion this award winning work.

Great clients are a rare and treasured breed. They appreciate that three things are needed to create exceptional work:

Courage: These clients accept no less than the best. If they ask for "cutting edge," they aren't afraid to bleed.

Collaboration: Great clients participate with their designers in the process that leads to optimum business results. Great design is not a spectator sport.

Commitment: It's crucial to find the resources (i.e. money) necessary to produce the highest level of design. The customers will love you for it.

The show, designed by Lorena Duran, is now on display at the AIGA National Design Center at 164 Fifth Avenue, in New York, in the Archives at the Denver Museum of Art, and in the Design Archives online. In the coming weeks, it will also travel around the country. Of special note: In New York the show is complimented by an exhibition of recent work by Milton Glaser entitled: "In Search of the Miraculous or One Thing Leads to Another."

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  • Paula Dombrow

    Ken, your postings are so way awesome I've sent them to some of my clients. Thank you for your huge contribution to great design and the economy.