Graphic Design News: March 25-31

Here’s your graphic design news for this week:

FiberMark Calls for Specifier Awards Entries
Covering materials producer FiberMark has announced its 20th Annual Specifier Awards Competition. The awards program, which was founded in 1992, honors “the best of color, texture, pattern and design innovation across a wide array of packaging, publishing, office products, graphic arts industrial applications and—new this year—environmentally responsible print media.” Entries must have been produced during the previous year and created using at least one FiberMark product. Designers may submit entries until August 31.
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FLEXcon Gets in the Game
With March Madness in full swing, Largeprinting.com presented adhesive coating and laminating company FLEXcon with a unique opportunity: create custom graphics for the College Basketball Experience, an interactive venue that allows visitors to experience game-oriented exhibits such as “sinking the game-winning shot” or “announcing the play-by-play action from the ESPNU broadcast desk.” Largprinting.com and FLEXcon worked together, using FLEXcon’s WALLdeco, FLEXmark floor art graphics and WINDOWdeco to bring the venue to life. For example, wall graphics in one station were used to make participants feel as if they were passing the ball to real players.
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An App to Eliminate Paper-Related Problems
Case Paper‘s new Paper Pro Apple and Android app provides increased customer service by providing answers to product questions. The company is marketing the free and ad-free app as “a handy, everyday tool for printers, suppliers, and packaging professionals that need to spec orders, price out options, or calculate quantities or weights.” The app boasts five tabs—Paper Calculators, Converters, Tables, About Us and Contact Us— that allow users to do everything from convert equivalent paper measurements to calculate sheet and roll numbers.
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IdeaSafe Protects Intellectual Property
With the USD equivalent of more than $11.8 billion worth of intellectual property stolen in the U.K. last year alone, IdeaSafe offers a discounted alternative to the traditional unopened letter that won’t prove an idea was yours in court. IdeaSafe’s online vault, although not a replacement for traditional patent or copyrighting services, will prove when a person’s idea developed and indicate who else has seen the idea during pitches or presentations. Click here for more information, including pricing details and how to score a free trial.
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Spring Lectures at the SVA MFA Design Criticism Department
The SVA MFA Design Criticism Department (D-Crit) has announced its spring lecture series, which will run Tuesdays from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Two exciting lectures include Rick Poynor on the importance of not making pictures an afterthought in design on April 9 and Kurt Anderson recounting his experiences co-founding “Spy” magazine on April 16. Each lecture is followed by a question-and-answer session and refreshments. Sign up here.
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Navitor Announces New Sponsorship Agreement
Wholesale printer Navitor has partnered with the AIGA Minnesota Chapter (where Navitor is based) on a sponsorship agreement beginning in 2013. The Bronze Sponsorship agreement allows Navitor to support AIGA programs like its Design Camp. Navitor’s senior vice president of marketing and technology  George McGowan expressed his support by saying:
The Print Industry has undergone significant disruption and commoditization over the last decade, and the Design Industry is experiencing similar challenges due to crowdsourcing and speculative work. As a trade-only wholesale printer, Navitor is committed to the craftsmanship and quality that only experts in design, print, marketing and communication can provide. That’s why we are supporting the important work AIGA does in our home state of Minnesota to ensure a vibrant and growing creative economy.
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Alamy Rocks a New Look
International stock photo agency Alamy gave its website (www.alamy.com) a facelift recently. In an effort to improve the customer experience online, the company has added a new homepage and search results (with new images added), as well as a “recent searches” feature, a lightbox tool and image pop-up in which the photo is 100% larger. Alamy CEO James West commented on the new site by saying:
We have an ambition to become the number one choice for both creative and editorial customers and we’re making step changes all of the time to improve our offering—from the ongoing investment in our site design, search and functionality, to delivering the best customer service in the industry. The new site reflects the true spirit of our brand and is aimed at connecting with a creative audience. We are currently focusing on the customer-facing elements, but we will be moving on to develop more tools and a better interface for our contributors.
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Now that you have your graphic design news, it’s time to get your design work in front of the right people. Start with the 101 Ways to Stand Out at Work book.

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