Regional Design Awards Winners 2016: Midwest

The Regional Design Awards is America’s preeminent design competition. View the winners of the 2016 RDA from the Midwest below, or enter the 2017 Regional Design Awards.

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Midwest Regional Design Awards

Although Timothy Goodman may be a New York City guy now, that wasn’t always the case. He hails from Ohio, and took great pride in judging design from his home region. “I found the crop of work from the Midwest to be very bold, playful and honest,” Goodman says.

As he reviewed the entries, he pondered a few simple questions: Is it adventurous? Does it take risks? Is it original or is it just replicating a tired trend?

“At this point, how many times can we see the same style or idea re-skinned and reapplied?” he asks. “I want to see the designer’s voice, opinion and perspective. I want to see their willingness to push the envelope either visually or conceptually. I want to see and feel that unequivocally.”

What surprised him most was the sheer number of beer and whiskey labels among the entries. “Midwesterners like to drink,” Goodman jokes.

On the whole, he encourages all designers to look at graphic design as a practice—and not just as a profession—and to make work that matters to them. It’s when you keep this simple truth in mind that everything else will follow, he advises.

[Read more about Goodman’s work and his approach to design here.]

Best of Region Winner

Women’s Foundation


Design Ranch, Kansas City, MO; Ingred Sidie, Michelle Sonderegger (creative directors/art directors), Morgan Stephens (designer), Nick Vedros (photographer), Claire Gude (writer), James Printing (printing); The Women’s Foundation (client)

[Read more about the Best of Region project here.]

Midwest Regional Design Awards Winners Gallery

1. 5 Points Mantras

john-dunne-art-prints-photographed-by-chris-mullins-5 john-dunne-art-prints-photographed-by-chris-mullins-4

5 Points Creative Union, Kansas City, MO; John Dawbarn (creative director), John Dunne (art director/designer/illustrator), Johnny Nomath (illustrator), Chris Mullins (photographer), Steve King (writer); 5 Points Creative Union (client)

2. 20 Liters Campaign

Extra Credit Projects, Grand Rapids, MI; Rob Jackson (creative director), Chad Hutchison (art director); 20 Liters (client)

“20 Liters is an international nonprofit organization based in West Michigan helping to raise funds and awareness of the global water crisis facing our world.”

—Extra Credit Projects (2)

3. 2015 Student Leadership Dinner


School of the Art Institute of Chicago; Travis Saunders (creative director/art director/designer); School of the Art Institute of Chicago (client)

4. 2016 Studio On Fire Letterpress Calendar


Studio On Fire, St. Paul, MN; Studio On Fire (creative direction/art direction/design/illustration), Brian Gunderson, Jesse Lindhorst, Invisible Creature, Tom Froese, Bill Ferenc (illustrators); Studio On Fire (client)

5. AIA Indianapolis Year In Review 2014


Commercial Artisan, Indianapolis; James Sholly, Jon Sholly (designers), Laura Musall (writer); American Institute of Architects/Indianapolis Chapter (client)

6. AltCap Annual Report


Design Ranch, Kansas City, MO; Michelle Sonderegger, Ingred Sidie (creative directors/art directors), Rachel Roth (designer), Forester Michael (photographer), Claire Gude (writer), James Printing (printing); AltCap (client)

7. Annual Report


Leo Burnett Chicago; Alisa Wolfson (head of design), Peter Ty (designer); 1871 (client)

8. Arrowhead Precision Mobile


TAIT Design Co., Detroit; Matthew Tait (creative director/art director/designer/ illustrator/writer), Audrey Elkus (art director/designer/illustrator/writer), Aaron Jones (photographer); TAIT Design Co. (client)

“The Precision Mobile is a modular kinetic sculpture, made of solid brass and stainless steel. This piece is purposefully designed for highlofted residential ceilings, hotels, restaurants and creative agencies.”

—TAIT Design co. (08)

9. Artcrank 2016


Simon Lam Design, Saint Charles, MO; Simon Lam (creative director/art director/designer), Vahalla Studios (screen printing); Artcrank (client)

10. Austin Initiative for Graphic Awesomeness (AI for GA)


Charles S. Anderson Design Co., Minneapolis; Charles S. Anderson (creative director/art director/designer), Jovaney Hollingsworth (designer/illustrator), Erik Johnson (writer); Austin Initiative for Graphic Awesomeness (AI for GA) (client)

11. Boulevardia


Whiskey Design, Kansas City, MO; Matt Wegerer (creative director/art director/designer), Roberto Camacho, Lauren Bowles (designers), Micah Barta, Josh Munsch (illustrators), Austin Walsh Studio (photography), Drunk Copywriter, Brent Anderson (writers); Boulevardia (client)

12. Butter


Shine United, Madison, WI; Michael Kriefski (creative director), John Krull (creative director/art director/designer), Jeff Foster (illustrator); Wisconsin Cheese (client)

13. The Center Identity


Hyperquake, Cincinnati; Dan Barczak (creative director), Holly Shoemaker (art director), Emily Zalla, Sarah Faulkner (designers), Adam Leigh-Manuell (photographer); The Center (client)

14. Chapman’s Beer


Cue Inc., Minneapolis; Alan Colvin (creative director), Nick Brue (art director/designer); Cue Inc. (client)

15. Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center Brand & Applications


This Is Folly, Minneapolis; John Moes, Holly Robbins (creative directors/art directors/designers); Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center (client)

16. Creative Fortune


5IVE, Minneapolis; Boriana Strzok (creative director/art director), Andi Jordt (designer), Jared Tuttle (illustrator), Mike Borell (writer); 5IVE (client)

17. CSA/Target Spark


Charles S. Anderson Design Co., Minneapolis; Charles S. Anderson (creative director/art director), Jovaney Hollingsworth (designer/illustrator); Target Headquarters (client)

18. Detroit Loves …


Team Detroit – The Park, Dearborn, MI; Toby Barlow (creative director), Nick Allen (creative director/ writer), Ryan Breight (art director), Michele Silvestri, Christine Jones (designers), Jason Smith (designer/illustrator), Cristina Lorenzetti (writer); Team Detroit (client)

“As part of our 60 Seconds to SXSW campaign, we created postcards that flipped negative stereotypes about Detroit into compelling messages that celebrate the city, and passed them out at SXSW to build brand awareness for the agency while shining a positive light on the city of Detroit.”

— Team Detroit – The Park (18)

19. Finding Freedom


Leo Burnett Chicago; Brandon Crockett (creative director), Alisa Wolfson (head of design), Rob Schellenberg (designer), Sandro Miller (photographer); St. Leonard’s Ministries (client)

20. FPC Custom Corrugated Portfolio & P.O.P. Corrugated Promo


Charles S. Anderson Design Co., Minneapolis; Charles S. Anderson (creative director/art director), Erik Johnson (designer/illustrator); French Paper Company (client)

See more winners from the Midwest on Page 2 >>