Saturday, December 20, 2008

United Arab Emirates Present MK Shannon Sculptures

Abu Dhabi Awards' Winners Honored with MK Shannon Designed Awards at Emirates Palace on December 21

For the third year, the United Arab Emirates has presented the Abu Dhabi Awards—an award designed by MK Shannon. From a statement direct from the Emirates News Agency, WAM —
“The Abu Dhabi Awards aim to bring to light the good deeds of people from across the Emirate and honour their selfless contributions. The number of nominations to-date is testament to the desire of residents and citizens to recognise these acts of goodness and the deserving individuals. Award recipients are not determined by number of votes, but rather on a case-by-case basis according to the merits of their nominations.

“Abu Dhabi awards were presented to individuals for remarkable acts of goodness. The honours were bestowed at the 4th annual Abu Dhabi Awards ceremony which took place on Sunday at the Emirates Palace.

His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces was in attendance to personally present the awards and congratulate the worthy recipients.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan underscored the commitment of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi to the Abu Dhabi Awards and expressed gratitude that the program continues to preserve the legacy of the nation's father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

The 2008 recipients mark the most diverse array of ages and contributions ever recognised in a single year - ranging from school children to octogenarians; from great historical figures to health professionals; from those helping people to those helping the environment and animals.

The 2008 Abu Dhabi Awards recipients are: Dr Margit Muller, Germany, a veterinarian and the Director of the Falcon Hospital in Abu Dhabi ; Dr Amal Abdulla Al Qubaisi, UAE, a member of the Federal National Council and an architect who has taken a personal interest in preserving the architectural heritage of the United Arab Emirate; Fahad Abdulla Jaber, UAE, an innovative graphic designer working to revolutionize the use of mobile phones for the deaf and hearing-impaired; Cameron Oliver, South Africa, a 12 year old boy who, with the support of his parents, was the driving force behind the creation of a national community awareness campaign to prevent camels being injured by littering in the desert; Dr Thabit and Maleeha Sabeti Mehr, Canada, doctors that provided medical treatment for the people of Al Ain for a period of 39 years; The Late Darwish bin Karam (1919 - 1985), UAE, a pearl diver who left pearl diving to dedicate his life to educating others; Rashid Mohamed Al Dhaheri, UAE, a 74 year old national who has been working to increase literacy among Al Ain's elderly women; the Late Sir Wilfred Thesiger (1910 - 2003), A British explorer who famously lived with the Bedouins for five years, photographed and told the story of Abu Dhabi and its people during the pre-oil era of the mid 20th century.”

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Catering Magazine Features MK Shannon Wedding Sculptures

Catering Magazine, the magazine for catering professionals, featured MK Shannon wedding sculptures in their November/December issue under their Trends That Register section. This section written by Sara Sturges highlighted various trends in the wedding industry. Here's what she had to say about MK Shannon:

"For the contemporary bride, MK Shannon offers handcrafted pewter wedding cake toppers with a modern flair. The Embrace design (shown here) can stand alone on top of the cake or alongside one of MK Shannon's silver or gold stylized heart toppers. More than 15 designs are available in a broad selection of brushed pewter, silver and rich gold finishes.

Prices range from $119 to $425. For information, call 800-542-8473 or visit"

Thursday, November 6, 2008

AARP Honors Best Employers For Workers Over 50 with Custom Award Created by MK Shannon

In 2007, the American Association of Retired People (AARP) commissioned MK Shannon Awards & Rewards to create a custom award for their Best Employers For Workers Over 50 awards. This September marked the second year the AARP Best Employers program honored their winners with the MK Shannon custom award called “New Day”. This year, AARP also expanded the program to include international companies in a program called AARP International Innovative Employer Awards. There were 50 New Day custom awards and 10 International Edition New Day custom awards presented at a gala event in Washington DC in October.

MK Shannon worked with Deborah Russell, Director of Workforce Issues at AARP, and Nancy Shaffer and Karen Bridges of BRAVO! Events By Design to develop the design of the New Day custom award. This was truly a labor of love for MK Shannon Awards (did we mention some of us are over 50?). It was also a fantastic team that worked well together to articulate the message of the award and express it as a custom award to honor and recognize these outstanding companies. It just reinforces the idea: communication, communication, and more communication make for a great custom award!

In October 2008, AARP ran this ad in The Wall Street Journal to recognize the 50 companies in 2008 that had been selected to receive their Best Employers For Workers Over 50 awards. We extend our congratulations. We were proud to see New Day pictured in the ad along with the names of those organizations receiving their recognition award. We also believe they should get the recognition they deserve!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Importance of An Artist's Signature

Historically artists have used their signature to mark their work. Consequently it has become a hallmark of the level of quality. Perhaps, it is simply the idea of pride of ownership. The artist signs their name to not only show ownership of the design of the work but also to announce themselves to the world along with their satisfaction with the completion of a work of art.

Many awards, particularly sculpted awards and even some custom awards do not carry the signature of the artist, or if the awards or trophies do carry a signature it is stamped into the sculpture. It is my belief that the work we do at MK Shannon Awards and Rewards is Awards Fine Art. Our sculpted awards, custom awards and commissioned awards all carry my signature etched into the metal by hand. It is a mark of quality and craftsmanship. It marks the sculpted award as an original created by my hand and no other. So when you are looking for unique awards or trophies to give for achievement, recognition or motivation, look for the artist’s signature on the award. It will tell you immediately that the artist is committed to the originality and uniqueness of their work and most of all to the quality. After all, you want to give an award that will be more that a decoration or momentary acknowledgement of accomplishment, you want to give a gift or award that has enduring meaning because of its artistic design and high quality.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Welcome to My Blog

Here’s my personal philosophy about the work I do:
“I create awards for people, to touch them, to honor them, and to praise them. This is my highest ambition and what I have built my life’s work upon. In my heart I am giving and someone out there is receiving and it makes both of our lives richer in that moment.”
Awards when presented are just that, something given to someone; it is a prize, an honor. However, once the event is over, and the award has been presented, it will go into someone’s home or office. Once that happens, I believe, the award now becomes something more; it becomes a focal point, something that every time it is seen, a wonderful memory is revisited. I consider my awards art in every sense. When I am creating them I want to capture a feeling or attitude so that when you look at my work you will consciously or unconsciously share my vision. It’s my hope that in this blog, I’ll be able to share with you some insight into my creative process along with my thoughts on the industry I’ve chosen as my career.