Life Experience Puts Lewis On Top
A lifetime of creativity pushes Rick Lewis to the No. 1 position of this year's top designers for BFL&S.
The oft quoted sports adage says, "It's not winning that is important, but how you play the game." But for Rick Lewis, president of ProForma Preferred Systems in Long Beach, Calif., how he plays the game is a big part of why he wins—and boy, does he.
In addition to winning seven awards in the BFL&S Top Design Contest in 2001—including Best of Show—and gold and silver medals in commercial printing in 1999, Lewis also won awards from the Admissions Advertising and Marketing Association of America and the Printing Industry of America last year.
So it's clear that when Lewis says the key to producing award-winning designs is listening to the client, he knows what he's talking about.
"The secret to success is to look at projects through the eyes of the client's target market," said Lewis. "Distributors may find that the design will be something they wouldn't prefer, but if it speaks to the target market then distributors have to design for its taste, not their own."
Putting these words into practice may often prove difficult, but not for Lewis because he has marketing in his blood. Born in Queens, N.Y., and raised in San Jose, Calif., Lewis began helping his mother with her marketing firm at the age of 14. By 19 years old, Lewis was working for his mother, helping her manage target market campaigns for the banking industry in Southern California.
Of course, given that Lewis is a designer today, it might seem like a foregone conclusion that he would end up working in marketing. Nevertheless, fate had something else in mind.
Before he could dive headfirst into a career in marketing and design, he would have to decide whether or not he wanted to be in show business. As it happens, the two went hand in hand.