The winners of the Frewin, McCall and, Joel Mervis awards, championed by Print and Digital Media SA, were announced last night at the Sikuvile Standard Bank Newspaper Journalism Awards. These awards recognise newspaper excellence in advertising, printing and production, layout and typography, as well as the balanced use of pictures and graphics.
Die Burger was announced as the Frewin award winner; Die Volksblad was announced as the McCall award winner and; City Press and Mail &Guardian were joint winners of the Joel Mervis award.
Urban dailies with a circulation above 50 000 are judged in the Frewin award category; urban dailies with a circulation below 50 000 fall under the McCall award category and, urban weeklies irrespective of circulation, are in line to win the Joel Mervis award.
Convener of judges, Clive Loxton, creative faculty head of the AAA School of Advertising, said, “The standard of printing has fallen and unfortunately there appears to have been little visual innovation this year. However, these comments should be seen in the light of the very high standards the industry has set itself, and that we as judges have become accustomed to in recent years”.
He added while the tough global economic climate must be placing pressure on publishers, it has thankfully not impacted visibly on the standard of newspaper craft.
Loxton thanked his fellow judges – Logan Naidu, Tebogo Serobatse and Linda Rademan – all recognised experts in their fields for their valuable contribution.
These are the judges’ overall comments and suggestions:
A few suggestions:
- “Get back to using pictures more dramatically. Make them bigger and working at covering the content with a little more thought. One paper, for example, has briefed their photographers to get some action into what would normally be the standard static shot. It’s early days, but if they develop this thinking, they could be creating a unique style of visual reporting.
- There is virtually no use of illustrations. In a country teeming with (inexpensive) young artistic talent this is a pity. A great number of these people are trained in classical art schools and an equally large number further trained to illustrate with Adobe’s CS5 Creative Suite. Some of the graduates at our college are producing world class illustrations, which are never seen in print, although they are on the internet.
- Typography is not being exploited as a way to create dramatic visual art works. Besides fulfilling the functional communication role it has to fulfill 99% of the time.
- Just implementing the above three recommendations could be the start of giving digital media a real run for their money and winning a young audience currently viewing everything on a tiny cell phone screen. How could these fleeting miniature images possibly compete with the might of a full colour page of newsprint covered in relevant news presented in exciting visual forms? If they’re good enough they will end up as posters on the bedroom walls of these young scholars and students and bring them back to reading as we know and love it.”
FREWIN, MCCALL AND, JOEL MERVIS FINALIST AND COMMENDED LISTS
- The Frewin award category recognises urban daily newspapers with a circulation above 50,000. Finalists in this category were:
Commended: Daily Sun
- The finalists in theMcCall award category, which honours urban daily newspapers with a circulation of 50 000 or less, are:
- Business Day
Commended: The Witness
The Joel Mervis category, recognising urban weekly newspapers irrespective of their circulation, yielded the following finalists: