Monday, July 25, 2011

Imagination 1 / Office papers / 1963 / Champion Papers

The first Champion Papers Imagination sampler was dated 1963 and oddly it had a price of $7.50, though I doubt anyone ever paid for a copy
     Paper companies had always supplied printers with sample books and they in turn showed them to clients to chose a suitable paper for a job. It was probably in the late fifties that paper companies started to promote their product directly to designers and small volume printers who sold themselves as more than just jobbing printers.  They realized that this had to be more than just blank sheets of paper bound up as a sampler. Why not show how the paper could handle various printing techniques like litho, gravure, silkscreen, folding, cutting, embossing et cetera. These samplers for designers became ever more elaborate during the sixties and seventies.   
     The Imagination (above) series ran from 1963 to 1988 and twenty-six issues were published. Each issue chose a subject and explored it with photos, illustrations, graphics and printing techniques on differnt Champion papers. Various well known designers worked on them. From issue twelve James Miho was the Art Director and these samplers became works of art.
    The subjects were 1 Office papers  2 Flight  3 Woman  4 Envelopes  5 Corporate image The Modular Car Company  6 The West  7 Fire  8 Boats  9 Man in the Moon  10 Circus  11 Railroads  12 San Francisco  13 Sport  14 Trees  15 Scandinavia  16 Brazil  17 Australia  18 Hong Kong  19 Safari  20 Rivers USA  21 Ireland  22 Main Streets  23 Catalogues  24 Time  25 Fun and Games  26 White on White, this last one was published in 1988.
    This first Imagination on Office papers was designed by Carl Regher.  Check out my Archive Index in December each year to see the rest of this amazing paper series. or go to March 2020 for a complete list and months/years they appeared in Past Print.



  1. This was an interesting page. I am one of those Designers that went to almost every Champion Paper promotion in Los angeles for many years. I have all the Champion series books from #1 to 22. Do you know any way I could sell them. My age is catching up with me and I don't want them to be thrown out when I go to see the Lord. David Garrett

  2. The only way I can think of selling them is on the net. I was missing two copies until late last year. Issue nineteen I bought on Alibris and issue twenty-three on Ebay, I'm still missing issue twenty-six. I've seen a few copies on Amazon and Abebooks too.

    The problem with selling them is that they were originally free and that makes if difficult to put a price on them and especially when you have twenty-two. If you don't want the hassle of selling how about donating them to the AIGI or some other design organisation that has a library.