Here's the initial thumbnail rough...
...followed by the final pencil sketch
The 8-by-10-in. rendering was done on showcard with showcard color.

Design Clinic: Monument sign

Organize the copy and improve readability

By Bob Behounek

Posted on Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016

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This design clinic is an example of a familiar problem, like many of the others we have worked on recently. Certainly there is considerable effort put into our sign structure. The bold, masculine posts support an attractive sign shape with a circular top.

It’s hard to believe, but I see plastic letters attached to this sign in a layout that is similar to that used for vinyl graphics on many flat signs: all the same weight and stroke. As I’ve said before, this resembles a business card layout. Little attention was paid to design or sign function. It looks like someone may have just ordered the letters to fit in the given space. All the information is there, but jammed from side to side and top to bottom. No matter what type of sign medium is used, a sign loses impact when it lacks contrast and overall interest.

If I got the call to help assist and resolve these design issues, I would stop just short of bulldozing the entire structure. Here’s what I’m thinking, and why:

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Bob Behounek has spent over 40 years as a sign artist and pinstriper in the Chicago, Illinois, area.

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