By Gordon Kaye
Sponsored by Verso Corporation
I’m a print and paper fanboy. Yes, it’s a thing.
I try to downplay it because, lets face it, in graphics and publishing circles, the buzz is elsewhere, and I want to fit in. That said, it is hard to miss the meaning of our 56th Annual Print + Paper survey, whose results are reported in this edition: Print still matters — a lot — to graphic designers and their audiences.
For context, this survey started back in 1963, when JFK was president, Beatlemania was on the rise, Mister Ed the talking horse was a TV megahit, the polio vaccine was first administered nationwide, I was blissfully unaware that my hero Mickey Mantle had a few issues with women and drink, and Bernie, Joe and the Donald were in their wonder years. Of course, print and paper dominated graphic communications. Today, print is a choice and an option, and our survey has evolved into an existential probe of the role and purpose of print today.
And what have we found? Let me answer that question with another question.
How would you describe a practice that is engaged in by more than 80% of the graphic design community, is part of the mix in 67% of client assignments and engages designers in 62% of their working hours, involves all kinds of expertise and craftsmanship, and is universally respected for certain classic strengths and inherent traits that facilitate human connectedness?
The answer: vital and relevant. Especially when executed well and deployed strategically.
For the fanboys among you, that is all you need to know.