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Dash of Inspiration: 2019 Founders’ Choice Awards.

January 27, 2020



Dash of Inspiration – 2019 Founders’ Choice Awards
Well, here they are!  The Founders’ Choice Awards for 2019 in all their shining, funny, witty, creative, and top selling glory!  One thing different this year since Christmas and Chinese New Year and of course Birthday cards rise to the top of sales, they’ve been broken up into their own Hottest Sellers so we have 9 cards total to feature here (Hottest Selling – Christmas, Hottest Selling – CNY, Hottest Selling – Birthdays).


1. Best New Artist: Linda Gladman of Bright Star Cards


Honorable Mentions Best New Artist:

Jamie Grob of Montana Design Studio




and Bill Thomas of Thomastoons



2. Best Overall New Card: 
Kathleen Johnson with Doctor’s Day#1559426



Honorable Mention Best Overall New Card:

Greetings by Anne – #1563308


and Kong Savage – #1583424



3. Hottest Seller – CHRISTMAS:

Linda Gladman of Bright Star Greetings –  #1581774


Honorable Mentions CHRISTMAS Hottest Seller:

Stephie McCarthy#1523736

and Ron Magnes#1587038


3a. Hottest Seller – CHINESE NEW YEAR:

Doreen Erhardt of Salon Of Art –  #1580276


Honorable Mentions CHINESE NEW YEAR Hottest Seller:

Teri Nelson Kuster#1585818


and Kong Savage – #1553154


3b. Hottest Seller – BIRTHDAY:

Judy Adamson – #1554506


Honorable Mentions BIRTHDAY Hottest Seller:

Judith Gargone#1580244


and Nancy Mink – #1570880



4. Best Custom Front (Text):

Judy Adamson #1573536


Honorable Mention Best Custom Front (Text):

Liz Van Steenburgh#1580162


and Doreen Erhardt of Salon Of Art#1576862



5. Best Custom Front (Image):

Pamela Jorgensen of PamJArts#1586882


Honorable Mention Best Custom Front (Image):

Sandra Rose – #1569340



6. Best Business Logo: Teri Nelson Kuster of Che Bella Nota#1583432



7. Funniest Card: Bill Thomas at Thomas Toons#1574336


Honorable Mentions Funniest Card:

Bill Thomas of Thomas Toons#1584620


and Mike Seddon #1594430



8. Most Creative Stock Card Creation (BigStock):

Doreen Erhardt of Exclusive Creations#1573538


Honorable Mention Most Creative Stock Card Creation (BigStock):

Shoaff Ballanger Studios #1571340


and Janet Pallagi#1574644



9. Rising Star:

Puppy Valentine by Diane Deiderich#1592750


Honorable Mention Rising Star:

Cat Easter by Sharon Dominick#1558822


and Cradle to Cross by Caryn Brame – #1561622



10. Custom Request – Nailed it:

Laughing Hippo Studio – #1582500


Honorable Mentions Custom Request – Nailed it:

Gail Pepin#1572686


and Cisillia Tay –  #1569198



11. Best Uncommon Card:

King Kahmeha Day by Ron Magnes#1565444


Honorable Mention best Uncommon Card:

Father’s day to be by Cheryl Jones#1568928


and Construction Management Grad by Kate Taylor#1563258



12. Best Design Challenge Submission:

Betsy Bush of Dragonfire Graphics#1575656


Honorable Mention Best Design Challenge Submission:

Pamela Jorgensen of PamJArts – #1554942


and Michelle Lanoue #1587624



13. Simply Clever:

Synonym Rolls by Doug Hill#1589538


Honorable Mention Simply Clever:

Keep Believing by Lisa Crisafi#1584006


and College Miss U by Judith Gorgone #1576564



14. Reviewers’ Choice:

Fiona, Reviewer #825 – Mindy Pierce#1539044

Ella, Reviewer #758 – Maria Forester#1586208


Mackenzie, Reviewer #528 –Stephie McCarthy#1584754


Desiree, Reviewer #121 – Kathleen Johnson#1589756


Phoebe, Reviewer #443 – Stephanie Laird#1564840


John, Reviewer #233 – Greetings from Anne#1569702


Catherine, Reviewer #871 – Tam Moody #1583540


Victor, Reviewer #992 – Wotto#1593846


Sue, Reviewer #120 – Christine Quimby – #1593294



What an amazing line up and such a very difficult job for our judging team. So many great new cards to consider and simply not enough awards. It was a trip down memory lane reflecting all the new additions, artists and cards, that made 2019 another awe inspiring year at Greeting Card Universe. Thank you to our amazing community of artists for your endless creativity and support!

GCU Community Manager

20 Comments leave one →
  1. Linda Gladman permalink
    January 27, 2020 8:17 pm

    Thank you, team GCU for choosing me as “Best New Artist” and “Hottest Seller – Christmas”!
    I’m humbled, grateful, and honored to be chosen among so many wonderful, talented artists!
    Thank you so very much team GCU for ALL you do for us artists!
    A shout out to my card reviewer who has been patient and very helpful with me during my first year design hiccups!
    I would also like to share some love with a beautiful, dear online friend and fellow GCU artist, Stephie McCarthy, for introducing and encouraging this newbie to be a part of Greeting Card Universe.♥
    My new opportunity was quickly brought to a halt in early February, due to my husband’s serious industrial accident but he miraculously recovered and by mid year I was able to start designing.
    Being part of GCU has been truly an amazing experience and I’ve learned so much!
    Thank you again, for the honor and I’m excited to see what 2020 brings for all of us!

    • January 28, 2020 4:02 pm

      Thank you for your kindness, Linda! I’ve been an admirer of your design skills since we first met and am proud of your perseverance. Your company has a good name because you are a bright star!

      • January 29, 2020 10:51 pm

        Stephie, thank you for the referral! From one best new artist to another.

    • January 29, 2020 10:47 pm

      You are so welcome and congratulations! We are so grateful to have you as a member in our community. Keep on shining!

  2. January 27, 2020 11:35 pm

    Congratulations to you Lisa, and to all of the Founder’s Award winners!
    Thank you, to all of the judges for choosing my design for an award!
    Being a part of the Greeting Card Universe world brings me so much joy and inspiration!
    I wish everyone a wonderful new year of many sales and happy designing!

    • January 29, 2020 10:53 pm

      Thank YOU for bringing great joy and inspiration to GCU and GCU shoppers!

  3. PamJArts permalink
    January 28, 2020 1:47 am

    What a lovely surprise, thank you so much for choosing one of my cards for best custom front image and for giving my little escargot an honorable mention. This was so exciting to see this evening, and like Betsy, I very much enjoy being a member of Greeting Card Universe and having this creative outlet.

    Congrats to Linda, for best new artist, and all the other fellow artists, some old friends and many new faces.
    Here’s to a fresh new year of possibilities.
    Thank you to all at GCU.

    • Linda Gladman permalink
      January 28, 2020 3:41 pm

      Thank you and Congratulations to you!

  4. January 28, 2020 2:37 am

    Huge congratulations to all those receiving recognition for their creative and ingenious designs! I so love being a part of this pool of talent and professionals!

    Thank you, Founders, for awarding three of my cards! Like everyone here, it’s an honor to see my designs among this list of wonderful creations! May this year bring us all inspiration and many sales!

    There is no place like GCU! It’s the card happiest place on earth!

    • January 29, 2020 10:55 pm

      Congratulations and thank you for all of your wonderful contributions and helping make GCU a happy place for artists.

  5. January 28, 2020 3:58 pm

    I am so honored to have been included in two of the categories this year! I admire GCU and its community so much and truly believe the best is yet to come! — Stephie

    • January 29, 2020 10:57 pm

      Congratulations, Stephie. You continue to delight us with stunning hot sellers! Keep them coming 🙂

  6. michelle lanoue permalink
    January 28, 2020 5:15 pm

    I just came across the list of Founder Choice awards. I have to say I was so excited to see one of my cards on the list. It means so much to me! Congratulations to all GCU artists here. What joy to be part of this site:)

    • January 29, 2020 10:59 pm

      Grateful to have you and all the other talented and creative artists representing GCU! Congrats on your 2019 award.

  7. January 28, 2020 6:56 pm

    Thank you so much for the Founder Choice Awards for my Chinese Year of the Rat and Real Estate sign cards! Just found out the awards have been announced!
    Congratulations to all of the winners of the special awards and their very creative card designs, as well as all of the artists on Greeting Card Universe who have designed such wonderful cards during 2019.

  8. January 30, 2020 12:47 am

    Thank you, GCU folks, for the honorable mentions! Illustration is such a tough field to be in, so your continued encouragement means a lot to me ❤️. And thank you, Sue of Sunshine Studio, for your kind words—not only much appreciated, they also alerted me to this lovely surprise of the awards 😆.

  9. February 6, 2020 10:57 pm

    I am so flabbergasted that one of my cards was chosen. Thank you so much Founders for choosing my Father’s Day card for a father to be. What an honor! : ) …and congrats to all the other talented artists.

  10. February 7, 2020 4:42 am

    Thank you so much for choosing my Head Shaving Party Card for the Most Creative Stock Card Creation Honorable Mention! I am so thrilled this one was chosen and I hope it’s been helpful in supporting the cause for the customer’s families and children.
    It’s an honor to be included in the 2019’s Honorable Mentions and to receive my new award to add to my collection, which I’m so proud of, as I am proud to be a member of GCU’s great community. Thank you again, much appreciated!
    Congratulations Everyone, such awesome cards!

  11. Ness Nordberg permalink
    February 8, 2020 2:22 am

    Congratulations to all the winners! What an amazing collection of cards for 2019! I had a good giggle with the Synonym Rolls by Doug Hill – #1589538. Very clever! xx

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