An Inside Look at the Creative Process with National Award Magazine Winners Studio 141


With the nominees announced for the 2020 National Magazine Awards: B2B, we are sharing a sneak peek into the creative development of this year’s program. We are grateful and honoured that the talented team at Studio 141 Inc. partnered with us to create the visuals that will help define our celebration of Canadian B2B magazines and creators.

We recently spoke with Dave Curcio, President and Creative Director at Studio 141 Inc., about the compelling artwork for the 2020 NMA: B2B Awards and the creative process behind delivering concepts that help bring messages and meaning to life.

NMAF: Studio 141 Inc. won two Silver National Magazine Awards in 2019. What did it mean to the team to receive those awards?

Dave Curcio: It’s always fantastic to get recognition for work our team has produced. At Studio 141 we take a collaborative approach to our projects and consider ourselves to be only one part of the equation to success. Our clients are the most knowledgeable when it comes to their brands so we take time to learn from them before we offer solutions. Whether it’s a photographer or illustrator we’d like to commission for a magazine or a new approach to a branding project, we involve our clients every step of the way.

As an outside agency, feeling like we’re part of a magazine team can be more difficult than for an internal art department, so we’re grateful to our clients who choose us as a part of their team. Satisfaction from receiving these awards is shared because the ownership of the work is shared; we work as a team and we share the rewards as a team.

NMAF: How does the team feel about now working with the National Media Awards Foundation?

DC: Our team was both flattered and excited to be asked to work with the NMAB2B to create their first brand identity since joining forces with the National Magazine Awards in 2019. Our team has been accumulating Kenneth R. Wilson Awards (KRWs) for nearly 25 years for our work on several publications. To be part of the evolution from the KRWs to the NMAB2Bs is being part of Canadian Publishing industry history. It’s a true honour.

2020 creative in use, concept designed by Studio 141 Inc.

NMAF: Can you tell us about the work Studio 141 is doing for this year’s awards?

DC: For the 2020 NMAB2Bs we wanted to take things back to basics. We created a look that is fresh and modern and draws a distinct connection to the magazine industry. Using a tactile ripped paper motif along with text as texture felt right. Text, colour, texture and balance — the fundamentals of design for a physical magazine in a digital space.

NMAF: What are some upcoming projects for Studio 141?

DC: The Ontario College of Teachers, The College of Nurses of Ontario, The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation along with several smaller organizations are keeping our team busy with a wide variety of projects.

While magazine art direction, design and production is a considerable aspect of the services we offer, we have seen an increasing demand for motion graphics and video production. We have adapted for this demand and transferred our editorial sensibility and aesthetic and applied it to a wide variety of corporate communications beyond the printed page. Our clients love this fresh, elevated approach to their projects.

NMAF: What’s in the near future for Studio 141?

DC: Covid-19 has changed the way we all work. In the short term we are focused on how to continue to produce effective communications with the challenges that physical distancing poses. Our team has worked on a variety of projects with some art and design budgets as low as zero. While this does present a challenge, creating great work with little-to-no resources is not new to our team. In the long term we are optimistic that this challenging time will pass and we will have gained insight into new and exciting solutions we can bring forward.

We at the NMAF graciously thank Studio 141 for their incredible contributions and talents in developing the creative for the 2020 National Magazine Awards: B2B. You can learn more about Studio 141 on their website