MPC proud to partner with High Country Press on award-winning inaugural magazine

MPC proud to partner with High Country Press on award-winning inaugural magazine

HCP’s Inaugural High South Weddings Magazine Earns PICA’s Best of Category

High South Award Winner

The High Country Press team would like to give a big “thank you” to our friends at Martin Printing, at High South Event Professionals, our local professional photographers and all those who had a hand in developing the first edition of High South Weddings.
By Jessica Isaacs |
The High Country Press Publications team added a new magazine to its repertoire last fall, and its first edition has already accomplished something big.

High South Weddings is an annual publication focused an all things weddings in the North Carolina High Country and surrounding communities in Virginia and Tennessee. Martin Printing, a company in Easley, South Carolina that has been family owned and operated since 1902, published the inaugural 2016 edition.

The folks at Martin entered HSW 2016 into the race for this year’s Printing Industry of the Carolinas Awards, “a premier symbol of excellence in the graphics industry” of the region, where it was awarded Best of Category.

The High South Weddings team (Debbie Carter, Jessica Isaacs, Ken Ketchie) is pictured on the day HSW 2016 issues hit the stands in November 2015.
The High South Weddings team (Debbie Carter, Jessica Isaacs, Ken Ketchie) is pictured on the day HSW 2016 issues hit the stands in November 2015.
Martin Vice President Craig Ragsdale said the company considers potential award-winners year round and selects those of the highest quality and innovation for submission to PICA.

“It’s an annual process, so this year’s awards that were handed out in the spring were for pieces printed in the calendar year of 2015. Throughout each year, we generally keep your eyes peeled for good candidates,” he said. “So, when this came along in the fall, we picked a few and set them aside and took good care of them so we could submit them in January.”

The folks at Martin chose to enter the magazine for several reasons.

“First of all, High Country Press did an outstanding job laying this piece out and putting it together. For it to be the first edition is amazing, because it really looks like it’s something that has been around for several years that they have refined,” he explained. “Another main reason is the unique size. The square shape just really stands out and sets itself apart from other publications. When we saw it, we were blown away and thought what a beautiful piece it was, so it was just an easy move for us to want to submit it.

“Great photography is another ingredient for an award-winner, and this piece is just chock-full of excellent photography, which is another reason we selected it. Obviously, [the area] is a beautiful destination for weddings, and it looks like it has a lot of great photographers, as well.”

PICA awards are tangible representations of the hard work and effort that are invested in each publication.

“This is a great chance for us to give our current clients a pat on the back and say what a wonderful job they’ve done,” Ragsdale said. “It’s also an opportunity for us to say to potential clients, here’s the type of work we can do; here’s a beautiful example of what we can produce for you. It really helps us on all fronts with marketing the company.

“We’re really proud that we could partner with High Country Press on the piece. The fact that it’s the first time out of the gate and won best of category is really outstanding. [The HCP team] did a great job and we’re looking forward to seeing what comes out in the future, as well.”

Click here to check out a free digital copy of High South Weddings 2016 or contact us by email at to receive yours by mail.

Stay tuned for HSW 2017, which hit stands in November.

More about the PICA Awards
The Printing Industry of the Carolinas (PICA) has announced that Martin Printing Co., Inc. of Easley is an award winner in the 2015 PICA Awards Competition. The announcement was made April 16, 2016, during the 2015 PICA Awards Banquet in Concord, North Carolina, with more than 270 industry professionals in attendance.

The PICA Awards competition is celebrating its 50th season and continues to be one of the largest printing contests in the nation.

This year, the PICA Awards attracted more than 630 entries from 47 printing companies, along with more than 125 entries from five graphic arts high schools and seven college graphic arts programs from across the Carolinas.

Martin Printing Co., Inc. won six Best of Category Awards, one Special Judges Award and two Awards of Excellence. Only one “Best of” may be given in each category. One or more Special Judges Award or Award of Excellence may be given in each category, limited to no more than one third of total entries per category.

A panel of out of state judges with extensive experience in printing and print production was brought in to examine the work. Each entry was judged on its own merit in a category with similar printed pieces. The judging criteria included: registration, crossovers, clarity and neatness, sharpness of halftones and line drawings, richness and tonal qualities of color, paper and ink selection, ink coverage, difficulty of printing, effective contrast or softness, finishing, bindery, and overall visual impact.