"While you're contemplating how your new sign will look — we’re contemplating how new your sign will look 10 years from now"
Attribute #6 — Signs that Work
You want your sign to offer all three. Each role is further defined:
Signs that Work are made before they are manufactured. Addressing aesthetic, functional and practical concerns involve planning that lead to optimal choices.
The thinking is analogous to getting dressed for the day. Monitoring the weather, we select attire for practicality and aesthetics. From that, a shortlist of contenders emerge from our wardrobe.
The same goes for dressing your message. Except that we monitor:
It takes proactive effort to spot and vanquish challenges to best laid plans. Complications can lay in wait: non-ideal conditions, emerging contradictions and incompatibilities.
It helps to look beyond our monitors and samples to discover any negative cause and effect. Drawings and samples convey intentions up to a point. But there’s nothing as beneficial as seeing actual samples under actual conditions.
Your signage specifications (specs) can serve as your last line of defense. A modification to specs can circumvent feature loss when non-ideal conditions cannot be altered to your project's benefit.
Legibility, a sign's job #1, can be diminished when it is assumed and not verified.
Signs illustrating this were discovered out in the field. Projects in this range had to have gone through an approvals process in order to get green lit. In each case, a minor change in specs would have bypassed counterproductive results.
Legibility in this case is directionally dependent. The sign approached from another direction might be more easily seen and read. One suggested specification change would have been to swap finishes among the letters and the background. It would be easier to read, but lettering would still need to be picked out from the busy background.
1.) The kind of lighting is insufficient. Here it acts as spotlight, only illuminating what is in direct alignment with a lamp. 2.) Light's immediate falloff reveals the metal's angle of reflectance that bounces ceiling darkness toward camera position. 3.) The tone-on-tone finishing lacks the contrast that could have mitigated problems 1 and 2.
This is hard to find and read. The numbers were located in a uniformly shaded spot. That is its downfall. Sun and shadow define incised lettering — at least for portions of daylight viewing when the sun is out and in the right spot.
In exterior applications, lettering on stilts inadvertently make for part-time legibility. This kind of arrangement is best seen on overcast days. On sunny days, this is what you get. Stood-out lettering looks nice, but there's a practical limit to the length of hardware.
This condition is legible part-time. Shadow dominates the empty space between and within lettering. This is a case in which a lighter color letter would have been legible, regardless the shadow.
A most illegible result. Camera position is pulled back to where the message should be clearly visible during a fast-moving approach. The fact that it's a hospital is not readily apparent, as is the second line of text almost impossible to discern. Sunlight behind the sign casting shadow on the face worsens the problem.
Reading is hampered both night and day with this result; night being worse. The metal's natural inclination to convey a variety of tones is what sinks this sign.
If you wait too long to address signs, you’ll inevitably lack the time to ensure your signs will work. Give us a ring and let's make it work.
1) — Communication.
Your sign works when it is Visible, Legible, Understood.
The primary goal of a sign is communication. Clear graphics are only one part of the equation. The other part concerns proactive measures to counteract detriments that will obscure your message or conceal your sign where it is situated.
2) — Consistent with your Brand and Profession.
Layout and materials dress your message and reinforce your market position.
3) — Tailored to Fit.
Your sign works when it occupies just the right amount of space.
4) — Coordinate with your Surroundings.
Your sign works when it looks like it belongs.
5) — Planned for Feasibility.
Your sign works when its content and attachment is furnished in compatible specifications.
Materials have limitations, as do sign-making techniques, as do installation substrates. A feasible project considers all variables, leading to a specification compromise that is your curated short list from which to choose.
6) — Planned for Durability.
Your sign works when it goes the distance.
Each sign should be suitably equipped to help counter conditions to which it will be exposed. It includes attachment, weathering, and proximity to the public.
7) — Planned for Affordability.
When budgets are low, get there with lower cost material and methods delivering maximum benefit emphasizing style and communication.
8.) — Planned for Safety.
Your sign works when it's build and attachment reduce liability.
9.) — In accord with Local and Federal Law.
Your sign works when it conforms to prevailing rules and laws.