For many in the printing industry, their first exposure to the Golden Image Competition has been a visit to the display gallery at the annual SGIA Expo (now PRINTING United). Attendees are always impressed with the variety of everyday items on display — not just fine art, signs and posters, but things like electronic circuitry, membrane switches, T-shirts, towels, gaming devices and perhaps even an impressive lenticular print that creates the illusion of depth and motion on a flat surface.
As we currently accept entries for the 2019 Golden Image Competition (the deadline is fast approaching!), it's worth noting the competition's backstory and how it benefits its participants and winners.
Originally named “Golden Squeegee,” the competition was established for Screen Printing Association International (SPAI) members, and was first held in Chicago at SCREEN PRINT ’80. In keeping with industry trends, the competition was changed in 1993 to the Golden Image Competition and has since grown from 27 to 53 categories — as noted above, there really is a place for every product that can be printed!
The primary objectives of the Golden Image Competition are to encourage top quality industry products, stretch the creative horizon of our industry, and encourage new markets and applications for printing. A Golden Image Award not only recognizes your capabilities as a printer, it's your way of standing out in the industry, and to customers and prospects.
Creation of a Competition: Behind the Scenes
For every participating SGIA printer member, the competition begins right in their own shop, where they strive to create the best possible print. They are constantly watching for that sample, off the production line, worthy of inclusion in Golden Image Competition. Multiple entries can be submitted via the competition's website, with the first free, and additional entries $30 each. After submitting an entry, applicants receive a confirmation along with the Entry ID that identifies the entry sample itself and the "Entry Specification Form" that includes production details. These materials are accompanied by instructions for shipping the entries to the official depository prior to PRINTING United.
Each Golden Image Competition submission is displayed at PRINTING United (in the Awards Gallery in Lobby F) and judged by teams of 30-35 volunteer judges. Judges are from SGIA member companies and are chosen on the basis of their technical skills, experience and knowledge in the categories they judge. They are unpaid volunteers who donate their time and skills for the benefit of the industry and the competition, and they have no perfunctory interest in the outcome. Often, judges come from companies that have won competition awards in previous years.
A Golden Image entry can earn a maximum of 50 points from each judge, plus up to five additional bonus points for a special effect. The judging criteria includes image definition, color appearance, registration, color/gray balance, image resolution, job/manufacturing complexity, and any special effects.
The deadline for entries to arrive at the SGIA Depository is October 17, so if you haven’t already entered, you better get moving! Don’t just tell your customers you’re a great printer, show them your SGIA Golden Image Award — enter now!