Chicago Parent won 17 awards at the annual Parenting Publications of America conference last weekend. We picked up nods for our July cover, our calendar listings, feature writing, and more, and our special magazines — quarterly Going Places and twice-yearly Special Parent — won more awards than any other ancillary publications out there.
Follow the links to see the winning articles and layouts. And while there wasn’t a category for “Awesome Readership,” we know we’d have cleaned up there. Thanks for being a part of the Chicago Parent community!
“Short Stuff” is a lively and engaging package of items with varied topics and interests, but all of them are aimed at family activities. Grandparents, children, moms-to-be, dads, teens and tweens can find something here. Nicely edited with strong headlines.
PERSONAL ESSAY: “For The Love of Nola,”
A father who once weighed 500 pounds lovingly tells about how he charts the emotional territory of nurturing his young daughter so that she might avoid the struggles he faced with food. Straightforward use of language and details contribute to the strength of this story.
The extensive listings in this calendar is impressive, but what lifts it above the others is the invitation to check the online calendar with its daily updates and its e-dition sign up for listings, discounts and giveaways. Breakout boxes, Web site addresses and organization enhance the work.
The content is a rich mix of the personal, the helpful and the enjoyable. Most of the articles are short, but they aren’t skimpy. Solid reporting is the foundation of good writing. This publication is full of both.
GENERAL FEATURE WRITING: “Living the Nightmare,” Jerry Davich
The writer exquisitely recreates the horrifying account of a young mother losing her two sons – the death by the boys’ father, her ex-husband. Readers can feel the mother’s torment and anguish as Davich walks them through the story. He allows her to tell it, and it’s a story readers won’t soon forget.
This publication’s departments are packed with tips, ideas, briefs and mini-reviews. Articles are timely and solidly reported.
Going Places/Special Parent
ANCILLARY OVERALL WRITING: Chicago Special Parent Summer
This publication was enjoyable as well as informative. The voices in the stories were authentic. The writers and editors did an excellent job of letting special needs parents tell their stories and provide information that others can learn from. The resources section at the end is a bonus.
ANCILLARY FEATURE DESIGN: “Chicago’s top picnic spots”
What a great use of color and photography to enhance the theme of this layout. A creative idea that is brilliant for the simplicity of its execution.
GENERAL EXCELLENCE: Chicago Special Parent
An extensive resource list is at the heart of a publication that helps parents from babyhood to adulthood. This guide goes beyond the ordinary, such as how to help your autistic child’s action not be misinterpreted by police.
ANCILLARY OVERALL DESIGN: Chicago Special Parent
Documentary photography and environmental portraits are well done throughout this publication, and particularly on the cover. The mega-huge resources section is well-organized and easy to follow thanks to consistent use of font and color, plus the fun little tidbit articles and images help break up all that type.
ANCILLARY COVER: Fall Going Places
The engaging cover photo is shot to go with the lead story. The words and image work together. Three key tease lines sell inside content nicely.
FRONT COVER July 2009
What better way is there to make Chicago your classroom that to go into fields with a net? The illustration works well with the topic. The out of focus grass in the foreground leads readers’ eyes to the child’s face and the words on the cover.
The attention to detail on these pages is outstanding. Every inch is designed. The designer’s photos are well shot and well used. The format of the section allows for creativity while preserving unity. Very engaging work.
INTERIOR ILLUSTRATION: “All the Rage”
The well-rendered screaming parent angrily pointing toward the teacher on the left creates an engaging dramatic tension that holds the viewer’s eye and illustrates the central theme of the story. A vivid color palette and large size on the page also help this illustration grab attention and pull readers into the text.
FEATURE LAYOUT/COLOR: “Star-Spangled Snacks”
The typography, images and colors in this spread work together to present a unified package that invites readers to have fun in the kitchen. The package is well organized and engaging.
BEST OVERALL USE OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Photos are recognized as editorial content, not just space fillers or a colorful splash on the page. Designers avoid graphic gimmicks and type over images. Good effort at pointing best resources on best stories, which includes having documentary photography in the main stories. Good use of dominant images for the articles. Hand out, reader-submitted and stock photos are edited for good quality.
SPECIAL SECTION: “Back to School”
From an opening illustration to photography that helps tell a story, this education guide has it all. The use of photography and color enhances an already strong editorial message.