The Straits Times snags gold for newspaper design at Asian awards

Straits Times night editor Lim Chuan Huat (far left) and deputy picture editor Wang Hui Fen at the Asian Media Awards ceremony in Manila last night. The awards, organised by Wan-Ifra, attracted 462 entries from across Asia. ST bagged a gold medal for
Straits Times night editor Lim Chuan Huat (left) and deputy picture editor Wang Hui Fen at the Asian Media Awards ceremony in Manila last night. The awards, organised by Wan-Ifra, attracted 462 entries from across Asia. ST bagged a gold medal for overall newspaper design, a silver for sports photography, and a bronze for feature photography.PHOTO: FEDERICO CRUZ
SILVER: For sports photography for executive photojournalist Lim Sin Thai's work on the 8th Asean Para Games (above), which were held in Singapore last year.
SILVER: For sports photography for executive photojournalist Lim Sin Thai's work on the 8th Asean Para Games (above), which were held in Singapore last year.
BRONZE: For feature photography for executive photojournalist Alphonsus Chern's series of photos of the Black Knights (above), Singapore's elite aerobatics team.
BRONZE: For feature photography for executive photojournalist Alphonsus Chern's series of photos of the Black Knights (above), Singapore's elite aerobatics team.
GOLD: For overall newspaper design (above) with its fresh new look last year as part of The Straits Times' 170th anniversary celebrations in July.
GOLD: For overall newspaper design (above) with its fresh new look last year as part of The Straits Times' 170th anniversary celebrations in July.

The Straits Times was awarded a gold medal for overall newspaper design by the World Association of Newspapers at its prestigious Asian Media Awards in Manila last night.

ST also bagged a silver for sports photography, and a bronze for feature photography.

The awards, organised by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (Wan-Ifra), drew 462 entries from across Asia, including newspapers such as Hong Kong's South China Morning Post and Malaysia's The Star.

Prizes are given out for publications that display excellence in areas such as photojournalism, design, infographics and editorial content.

In the design category, judges look at the way a newspaper is put together to make an impact through its use of text, headlines and images.

Straits Times editor Warren Fernandez said: "We're very thankful for this recognition from the World Association of Newspapers.

"It comes just weeks after the ST won an Award of Excellence for its redesign from the respected Society for News Design in the United States.

"So, that's double validation for our redesign across platforms. But most important of all, our readers seem to share this assessment, as the feedback to the new look has been very good; we're especially pleased with that."

The Straits Times got a fresh new look last year as part of its 170th anniversary celebrations in July.

Design consultant Lucie Lacava, who worked with the paper's sub-editors and art department, spearheaded the revamp.

Ms Lacava, who founded Lacava Design in Montreal, Canada, has been involved in the design of nearly 100 publications worldwide.

Straits Times executive photojournalist Lim Sin Thai netted the silver award for sports photography with his work on the 8th Asean Para Games, which were held in Singapore last year.

His images showed runners' jubilation after winning their races, as well as their exhaustion as they slumped on the track.

"For every sporting event you cover - whether it's football or swimming - you take the action shots, but you also have to anticipate their reactions," said Mr Lim, 54.

Meanwhile, executive photojournalist Alphonsus Chern snagged a bronze award for feature photography for a series of photos he took of the Black Knights, Singapore's elite aerobatics team.

To better understand what it took to be a pilot, the 36-year-old even went through training to get his body accustomed to the breakneck speeds and gravitational force that all military pilots face.

Before the actual shoot, he planned out the different kinds of pictures he wanted to take.

"When the flight line crew and the pilots start launching the aircraft, things move very quickly," he said. "They can't wait for me, so I have to plan every shot."

He also won a hat-trick of awards earlier this month at the Singapore Press Holdings annual awards ceremony for its English/Malay/Tamil Media group.

Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the parent company of The Straits Times, picked up a total of five awards yesterday.

These include a silver in the community service category for Chinese dailies Lianhe Zaobao and Lianhe Wanbao. This was for their project, "Reading Newspapers With The Elderly", which started in August 2014.

More than 100 volunteers from both papers read newspapers to seniors for an hour every week to help increase their understanding of current affairs.

The Peak Selections: Gourmet & Travel, a publication of The Peak by SPH Magazines, also won a bronze for overall design in the magazine category.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 31, 2016, with the headline 'ST snags gold for newspaper design at Asian awards'. Print Edition | Subscribe