Sign & Digital Graphics

October '17

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S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S • October 2017 • 69 was to inspect how signs were built. My learning process would have been acce- lerated had someone explained things to me. My boss was the quiet type. The shop foreman was way too busy. So, I had to use my own initiative to learn. I had to observe and take notes. When I could, I asked lots of questions. So, I took it upon myself to do hand sketches as I watched the fabricators build. Then, I would go back to my design station and draw what I sketched. This is a time-consuming way to do things, but this was my only alternative. Remember, I had no one to teach me, and most people do not know how to prop- erly explain signage. There is no school or training with sign design. If you want to learn, you have to take initiative and/ or read books. Note: If you don't have a fabrication shop, set up an appointment with your local whole- sale fabrication shop. If you don't work with a wholesaler, think about another sign company you have an alliance with and visit their shop. Be inventive. Tip 3: Conduct a Mandatory Tour of a Mall or Retail Venue The business landscape is littered with signage, most of which is not very good. I would even say, there are a lot of signs you can't even read. But this is not entirely the fault of sign companies. A good number of business owners have an identity logo created that they believe is good for business. Most of the time a logo designed by a graphic designer does not work as a sign. A graphic designer who would like to be inspired with sign design should take a tour of a nearby mall (if you live in the United States). An American mall showcases some of the very best sign designs in action (i.e., installed). Mall signs are usually lit up, and just glistening with awesomeness. Again, it really helps if you have an experienced sign person explain signage to you. You cannot pos- sibly remember everything, so take notes. And be careful about taking photos at the mall because security sometimes frowns upon this activity. SDG Tilly's sign in a mall. (Source Mike Burke)

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