PrintIT! Awards Highlight the Future of Print at Ipex 2010

Daniel Smith Winner Printit 2010

The annual PrintIT! Awards, now a well-established event in the print industry calendar has taken place at Ipex, the global event for print, publishing and media. Attracting a host of industry figures, print professionals and finalist schools, the event celebrated the hard work and achievements of the thousands of students who took part in this year’s PrintIT! competition. During the event Daniel Smith, a pupil from St Ives School - a specialist technology college in Cornwall was awarded the overall prize of a state-of-the-art iPad and an exclusive all-expenses paid trip to Paris to attend Canon Expo in October.

George Clarke, outgoing Chairman of PrintIT!, congratulated all of the finalists of PrintIT! 2009/10 and commented on the importance of the nationwide competition for the future of the print industry, “This year’s awards have been particularly special taking place at Ipex 2010 and attracting an astonishing range of talent. It’s been a privilege to work with PrintIT! throughout the past year and to see first-hand how this unique programme can introduce and enthuse young people to the exciting world of print.”

Mr Clarke continued, “The winner of this year’s competition submitted an exemplary piece of work; innovate, creative and mature, but as has been said before, the standard of entries submitted from all across the country was outstanding. Choosing just one winner was tough.”

This year the overall winner of PrintIT! 2009/10 was selected by a panel of print, media and graphic arts experts that deliberated over who, out of the thousands of participating students, would win each of the competition’s eight subject categories.

Commenting on Daniel’s success, which included winning the prize for “Best Wall Poster”, Tom Bowtell, General Manager of Proskills, the Sector Skills Council behind PrintIT!, said, “Daniel’s entry emerged as the winner due to his inventive, fresh approach to the competition brief.  Across all categories, Daniel’s work stood out because of the obvious amount of care and attention he’d given the project, teamed with which, the level of understanding he demonstrated for printing methods, and for the environmental concerns of the industry as a whole was exceptional. In addition, his overall winning design of the barcode is relevant to all merchandise across the Fairtrade brand.”

As part of the new ‘Green’ PrintIT!, students this year were challenged to place a greater emphasis on sustainability than in previous years, helping students to develop a better understanding of the environmental issues facing print. Creating a raft of designs to suit a print-based campaign promoting Fairtrade products in supermarkets, the PrintIT! 2009/10 course expanded its focus to include the teaching of wide and large format print processes.  This in turn gave entrants the scope to design a wider variety of end products, from leaflets and shelf wobblers through to posters, mobiles, and aisle and storefront banners.

“Our print industry is still in the early stages of recovery, but you only have to look at the skill demonstrated by these young people and the passion they have displayed for all aspects of print, to know that we have a bright future ahead of us,” comments Terry Watts, Chief Executive of Proskills.

This year Vario Press based in Slough, Berkshire, a printing and finishing company offering a multitude of integrated services including marketing, advertising and graphic design, took home the award for “Best Industry Twinner”. The company was judged to have provided exceptional commitment in supporting its twinned school (Herschel Grammar, Slough) and providing advice to both teachers and students throughout the competition.

“We believe strongly that the competitiveness and success of the Print Industry depends on young people today. Schemes like PrintIT! are some of the best ways of introducing students to the many print career choices available to them, and by Twinning we are taking an active role in educating potential upcoming talent,” says Dave Clarke, Managing Director of Vario Press, commenting on his company’s role as a Twinner.

Mr Watts concludes, “What we have all seen today at Ipex is a glimpse of some of the future talent available to the print industry. The whole event has been a great success and it has been an inspiration, not only to see the students enjoying the awards and Ipex as a whole, but to see so many of print’s key figures in one place. PrintIT! has proved to be a uniting force for this industry since its inception in 2005, and we are sure that it will continue to play this role in the many years to come.”

All eight category winning students were presented with a top of the range digital camera and their schools were gifted print-related equipment for their Design & Technology departments.


2010 Category Winners

  • Best Wall Poster: Daniel Smith, St Ives School, Cornwall.
  • Best Shelf Wobbler: Fiona Shaw, Wycombe High School, Buckinghamshire
  • Best ‘Free’ Design: Thomas Gavrie & Edward Johnston, Chatham House Grammar School, Kent
  • Best Use of Brand across the Range:  Fiona Liao, Tiffins Girls School, Surrey
  • Best Understanding of Printing Techniques: Madeleine Young, Wycombe High School, Buckinghamshire
  • Best Use of Materials: Bethany Titcombe, Wycombe High School, Buckinghamshire
  • Best Understanding of Environmental Concerns: Jaye Sahota, Herschel Grammar School, Slough
  • Best Overall Presentation: Shreeja Basak, Tiffins Girls School, Surrey


2010 Special Awards

  • Best Industry Twinner : Guy Clarke, Vario Press in Slough
  • Best Teacher: Ricardo Arbelaez, The Thomas Deacon Academy


Overall Winner of PrintIT! 2010

  • Overall Winner of PrintIT! 2010 : Daniel Smith, St Ives School, Cornwall