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Month: July 2011

A History of Signs and Printing - Part 3

Bullock rotary press

The world is full of signage displays in the 21st century. Even in “3rd World” countries, there are lots of signs telling you where to go or marking stores or advertising. And while most of us may give passing thought to sign makers and printing, that’s probably the extent of your thought on the subject.

Recapping the previous two articles on the brief history of signs, we’ve now covered what they were used for and the standard media (wood) ones were made of up through electrical and neon in the past 100 years or so, Hopefully this is somewhat interesting –

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A History of Signs and Printing - Part 2

Types of Signs

In this second article on the brief history of signage, we’ve now covered everything up until the 18th century until the present, and my hope is that you’ll have a great handle, whether you wanted a handle on it or not, all about sign making.

Hi again…as I said last time, if you look around, or drive around, when you live in any industrialized country on earth, your locale is full of signposts. Most of us simply accept that sign makers are all about signs and printing and that’s the extent of your thought on the subject.

From Neon and Internally Illuminated Signs to Full Color LED Displays

18th to 19th Century

As I stated in the final part of the of the last article,

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A History of Signs and Printing - Part 1

History of Sign Makers

If you’re like most people, you simply accept that sign makers are all about guide displays and printing, and that’s about it.

When you look around, or drive around, if you live in most industrialized countries on the planet, your world is full of signs. I’m going to give you a brief history so you’ll know, whether you wanted to know or not.

Where Sign Making, Printing and Sign Makers Came From – A Short History

Stone Age

In the Stone Age, Grog and his wife, Groggette, sent a smoke signal invitation to Thor and his wife,

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Basic Screen Printing Compared to the Basics of Digital Printing

On-Screen Printing

Several hundred years ago when I made the fateful decision to get into the sign business, my first position was screen printing signs. Back when I started, you could print signs with lacquer inks and get high at the same time…those were the days!

Many companies who used on-screen print processing have switched over to digital printing, but there are still numerous companies that make use of this traditional method, and as far as I can tell, it isn’t going away anytime soon as was prognosticated by myself and other experts 5 years ago.

While digital imprinting has increased in popularity,

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Digital Electronic Traffic/Highway Signs vs. Illuminated Road Signs

Traffic Signs

While these two types can cross over, Illuminated Traffic Signs and Digital Traffic Signs aren’t necessarily the same thing.

Digital/Electronic and Illuminated Road, Highway, Traffic, Street Airport Signs

Digital guide markers are typically lighted with LED’s (Light Emitting Diodes) and may have a small section that shows a number or series of numbers and letters, such as you might see at some airports, or may be an electronic reader board with messages for oncoming motorists.

Illuminated Traffic Signs

Illuminated Traffic Signs, on the other hand, may include digital kinds, but may simply be a signpost that is lighted from below with directional lamps,

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Custom Reflective Aluminum Signs for Businesses or Communities

Aluminum Sign

Now, for those of you who think that signs are ugly and barely a necessity, you may have a valid point as you wander around, lost, in the world you want without them. However, for the rest of us who like to know where the heck we are, they are the grandest invention for finding your way ever invented!

Just for definition sake, they are the kinds that are non-standard. Standard types, as discussed in the previous post, are the ones that include Stop, School Zone signs, or Speed Limit markers.

Of course, anyone can still get lost,

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USDOT-approved Reflective Road, Highway, or Street Traffic Signs

large format Reflective Signage

Today I’m discussing reflective traffic signs or road signs. As you drive down the various roads and highways, you’d certainly be lost frequently if you didn’t have them.

Back when I was a young man in my early 20’s, I spent a few winters in the Southern U.S. and was amazed at the lack of signage. Even more, I was amazed at how people knew how to get around without them.

One conversation I remember having with an old-timer went something like this…”ya’ll just travel yonda up Hwy. 357 and you’ll see a big old oak tree standin’

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Parking Permits – Hang Tags Decals, Stickers, and Static Clings

Hang Tags, Stickers, Decals, and Static Cling Parking Permits – Serialized Permits for Every Use

There are two basic types of vehicle parking permits – hang tags and stickers. Hang Tag types hang from the rear-view mirror and come in various shapes and sizes.

Parking Permits come with plain backgrounds, reflective backgrounds, prismatic backgrounds, and chrome backgrounds. In our area, they are used to identify cars whose owners are disabled or elderly.

Hang Tag Parking Permits

The advantage of a hang tags is that it can be removed as you leave or placed on the mirror upon arrival,

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Reflective Decals and Stickers – Advertising After Dark

Why reflective decals or reflective stickers? There are lots of uses for them…some of the main reasons to use them are emergency vehicles, such as police and fire department vehicles, but also as emergency graphics in buildings that point to a fire extinguisher or an escape route, to name a couple.

In the past twenty years, some of the uses our clients have used reflective decals or stickers for have been to place on the helmets of a US Navy Helicopter pilot squadron, as accessory stickers for bicycles, and as graphics on commercial vehicles.

Reflective Stickers,

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Advertising with Floor Graphics Decals

floor decals

Floor graphics decals are a great way to promote events, products, or even use as a way finding device.

And, if you expand your thinking with this type floor graphic decal, you can also use it on walls as well. Due to the tough over-laminates used on this type of decal, it can be used anywhere human (or otherwise) contact might be made.

Floor Graphic Stickers and Decals in Full Color and 3D – Floor Advertising at its Best

Any graphic design can be printed digitally or screen-printed, using a specific vinyl with adhesives that will stick to most types of floors including concrete,

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