Sign & Digital Graphics

July '17

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6 • July 2017 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S __________________________________________ Publisher James "Ruggs" Kochevar – Executive Editor Ken Mergentime – Managing Editor Matt Dixon – Digital Content Editor Tony Kindelspire – __________________________________________ Art Director Linda Cranston Graphic Artist Iveth Gomez Multimedia Producer Andrew Bennett __________________________________________ Advertising Account Executives Adam Decker – Diane Gilbert – Sara Siauw – Sales Support Dana Korman – __________________________________________ Contributors in this Issue: Mike Burke; Vince DiCecco; Ryan Fugler; Paula Aven Gladych; Charity Jackson; Stephen Romaniello; Bill Schiffner; Andy Stonehouse; Rick Williams. ___________________________________________ Vice President/Events Sue Hueg CEM, CMP – Show Sales Damon Cincotta – Exhibitor Services Antoinette Vernon – ____________________________________________ National Business Media, Inc. President & CEO Robert H. Wieber Jr. Vice President/Integrated Media John Bennett Vice President/Finance Kori Gonzales, CPA Vice President/Publishing and Markets Dave Pomeroy Vice President/Audience Lori Farstad Director of IT Wolf Butler B Y L I N D A C R A N S T O N Guest Editorial T hirty years ago, I answered an ad in the newspaper for a graphic designer position and took a job with a small publishing company, National Business Media. The company had a few publications under its belt—and one of them was Sign Business magazine. When I joined up, the pub was still in its first year, and it was published in a tabloid format. You wouldn't believe the things we had to go through to get that puppy to press over the years. Setting headlines with an old typesetter, pasting up galleys of text with wax on thin sheets of cardboard (aka "boards"), checking in client ads made up of four pieces of film in CMYK with a color chrome, and using a stat camera to make halftones for black and white photographs. Clearly this was before the digital age. I remember wrapping up boxes containing our precious boards and negatives and racing to the nearest overnight drop box to send them to the printer—just in the nick of time. You didn't want to miss the last pickup or you'd find yourself driv- ing to the airport—all in the name of meeting the deadline. Back then we had to wait a few days for our bluelines and color chrome proofs to arrive. After approval, we would package them up and—you guessed it—ship them back to the printer. Oh, what a difference 30 years makes! If you didn't have to go through the transition from paste-up to digital, consider yourself fortunate. For us trailblazers, it was a long, bumpy ride. We had to learn how to do our job using brand new tools and technology. And don't forget we needed that project to have good design, type and color selection. Oh, and no typos please. In retrospect, I can't believe how much more efficient everything has become in the printing world. Sending boards to the printer is a digital task now and takes under an hour—and approvals happen just as fast. There is no wax machine to maintain, no need for a darkroom and no negatives to ship. We have certainly come a long way. During my tenure as art director for this magazine—renamed Sign & Digital Graphics in 2009—I have watched the sign industry go through many changes as well. There was certainly resistance to computer-generated signage in the begin- ning. But now, most every sign shop has a computer. There have been huge advancements in the way we illuminate our signs. And the new materials available for sign and digital graphics are impressive. Many images of signs have come across my desk over the years—likely many hundreds of thousands—and let me say, it has been an honor to be involved with such an amazingly talented industry. As a designer, I recognize and appreciate good sign work when I see it. Whether it be signage or magazine design, our purpose is the same—to make our "boards" look as good and clean as we can within the deadlines that loom ahead. Precious Boards Got something to say? Join the S&DG Discussion Group at: Linda Cranston has been art director for Sign & Digital Graphics magazine since 1987. This issue marks her 30th year with the magazine. She can be reached at

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