And the Winner Is…

For the second consecutive year, Ken Chenault has won the AUGI Top DAUG T-Shirt Design Contest. Ken is MEP Design Tech/CAD Manager/Trainer for GBA, Inc., Lenexa, Kansas, and an AutoCAD 2009 Certified Professional and AutoCAD 2010 Certified Professional.

His prize was a free pass to Autodesk University 2010. Below, a Q&A with this year's winner.

AUGI: First of all, congratulations! Tell us a little about yourself and your company GBA, Inc.

Chenault: GBA is an A&E firm specializing in office buildings, critical facilities, pharma/bio-pharm, and civil. My function is as an MEP Design Tech/CAD Manager/Trainer/catch all. With the economy the way it is right now, I am the only strict CAD tech left in the Buildings Group for GBA.

AUGI: Have you done graphic design in the past?

Chenault: I have never been trained in graphic design, but I did work for a print shop before going to school to become a drafter. That is where I designed my first t-shirts because I could get the film positives, used to burn the silk screens, made for free. Art was my favorite class in school growing up. It was the one thing that I knew I was good at. I have made designs for friends' tattoos, I draw portrait art in my spare time, and I make a t-shirt design every few years for a friend or contest. AutoCAD is really a good fit for line art.

AUGI: You won last year – were you surprised to win again? How did you find out you won?

Chenault: I was very surprised to see that I won again. I like to think (and hope) that I have a chance every time I enter, but there were definitely some good designs to choose from this year. I can’t wait to see how the game is upped next year.

I didn’t actually find out until I walked up to the AUGI booth on Tuesday night. Last year AUGI contacted me by email about a week after voting closed. This year I don’t believe anyone contacted me. If they did, it must have slipped past me, because I looked a lot.

AUGI: Where did the idea come from for your design?

Chenault: I wanted something different from last year that would still play on the TOP DAUG theme. I also noted that it was going to be the 20th anniversary for AUGI. I combined the two into DAUG TAGS because I thought of using the 20 YEARS SERVICE on one of the tags as a shout out for the anniversary. I didn't do that, though, as it really wasn't until 2010 for the anniversary year and it is still 2009. The design changed a lot this year, I started out with some battle-scarred tags and eventually changed them to be just normal, but with the call sign message and, of course, the AUGI logo, which is a must in the designs I create for this contest.

AUGI: How long did it take you to create the winning image?

Chenault: I worked on the design, off and on, for about 3 fast and furious weeks. I found out about the contest late this year due to unexpected, but appreciated, workload. I was actually scrambling at the end and had about 20 minutes to spare on deadline day. I created the tags and chain in 3D and manipulated them to the angles I wanted and then I SOLPROF’d them into 2D. I had to put the text in and manipulate it with the tags so the angles would be correct for the design.

AUGI: What does it feel like to see your design on the Top DAUG shirt?

Chenault: I always enjoy seeing my artwork on something. It's a great feeling knowing that something you created is possibly going to be worn by a few thousand people throughout the year. I am especially proud of last year's design because I thought it just screamed TOP DAUG. This year’s design, while not as flashy, works well, too. I thought it was about 180 degrees from last year. I’m already starting to think towards next year, so everyone needs to bring their "A" game to the designs. I know I will. It’s the only way I can continue to get my company to send me to AU. That is motivation indeed. Thank you, AUGI, for allowing me to use my talents and express myself through this competition.

Congratulations to Ken and thank you to all the AUGI members who submitted t-shirt designs this year. Read about the AUGI Top DAUG T-Shirt Contest finalists on BLAUGI.

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