2009 Printimage Excellence Awards

Minuteman Press (The MPX Group) in Golden Valley, MN, was honored with Best of Show in NAQP’s 2009 PrintImage Excellence Awards. Company president Phil Kotula says, “We were trying to put together an incredible showpiece to demonstrate everything we can do. We wanted to create a piece that would stand the test of time.”

“Phil’s piece is truly spectacular,” says NAQP vice president Christina Ciurej. “It features all sorts of textures, applications, difficult die-cutting…the judges couldn’t deny it was the Best of Show.”

The spiral bound book features aqueous coating, foil stamping, die cutting, embossing—many examples of fancy print work are demonstrated within its pages. “We wanted to show that we are more than just a printer,” Kotula points out. “We’re moving into offering marketing services, so we wanted something that we could put in the hands of any advertising agency and they would be impressed. So we needed to do outstanding printing, but also show that we could deliver creative design and writing. We wanted to show them that we can do anything the big boys can do.”

The theme of the project is dear to the hearts of all the firm’s employees because each page is based on an individual employee’s passion in life. Each page features a photo, a quote, and an explanation about how it relates to the individual employee. This is used as a vehicle to showcase a particular bit of fancy printing. Basing the book around the staff served the double purpose of introducing customers to the staff while showcasing their talents.

Along with Kotula, the creative forces behind the project were Theresa Darsow, Suzanne Curtis, and Vicki Semsch, but the entire staff was involved in providing information about the things they love and in the actual production. Several vendors were involved as well. For example, the embossing was done by Embossing Plus. “We don’t do that in-house,” Kotula notes, “so it gave them a chance to showcase what they could do, too.”

“The process was really difficult,” he admits. “With four people working on it—and we all have very strong personalities—there were lots of different ideas. Maybe someone would get bummed out because their idea wasn’t used, but there were the victories, too, when we’d all agree on a really great idea.”

The final benefit to the piece, he points out, is that it has proven to be a great morale booster. “And these days, that’s sorely needed.”

2009 PrintImage Excellence Awards Winners

NAQP's PrintImage Excellence Awards are sponsored by Kodak.