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Any thoughts on the design

Discussion in 'Portfolio Board' started by Texas_Signmaker, Dec 20, 2017.

  1. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    This an improvement? Kind of not proud of the text in the yellow bar but my brain couldn't handle much more ATM

    [​IMG]
     
  2. signbrad

    signbrad Member

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    Texas_Signmaker,

    I believe this layout is a nice improvement over the original.

    The word 'Oaks' nicely dominates. You have made it the "entry point" of the composition. This is what the viewer should see first. For viewers who are driving by, rather than walking or standing, it may be the only thing they see. So it is good that you have allowed nothing else to compete visually with this word.

    This layout also shows greater respect for the importance of generous margins. The need for negative space in a layout, especially in the margins, is a principle that takes many of us years to realize. The tendency to fill up the available space with copy is an almost overwhelming temptation for new designers (and clients). Yet, even in the gold subpanel you have shown restraint. A newbie would have made the letters in this subpanel much larger.

    .................

    Here are a couple of tweaks for your last revision. They are not necessarily the right way nor the only way:

    Do the squint test. When you squint, does the word "Oaks" seem a little low and to the left? If so, raise it a bit and bump it to the right till it seems visually centered in the black area when you view it while squinting.
    Don't measure. Do this by eye and trust your eye. If the leaf gets closer to "Oaks" that may not be a problem. The leaf can be slightly downsized if it is a problem. (Also, should the leaf be an oak leaf? It looks like a maple. But then, I'm not a woodsman and it's a minor point).

    Now, note the congestion in the lower right corner of the black area. It is caused by the words "at Cambridge." These words are very close to the border and close to the gold panel, effectively causing that corner to look filled. A flaw? Everywhere else the main copy has generous white space surrounding it—but not here. The solution? Well, if you've already raised "Oaks" a bit, there is room to raise "at Cambridge," too. And bump it to the left a little. Try to give it separation from both the border and from the subpanel. It could probably be downsized a little as well, enhancing the separation, if needed. I might even make "at Cambridge" bolder in an attempt to make it appear more closely related to the bold "Oaks." Does that make sense?

    It's important that "The Oaks at Cambridge" appear as a unit, visually. The making of groupings—creating what some call copy blocks—is a practice I use frequently. Copy blocks surrounded by margins of white space go a long way to organize a composition, making it easier to scan and digest. This is especially true with heavy copy. When there is heavy copy, the secondary copy needs to downsized, firmly corralled.

    Does it matter that some of the secondary copy becomes downsized to the point it is unreadable to passing traffic? No. Why not? Because heavy copy is not readable to passing traffic anyway.
    The time spent glancing at a sign by traveling motorists is, in my opinion, about 1½ seconds per glance. In other words, this is the amount of time that a driver takes his or her eyes off the road to quickly scan a sign. A second glance, of course, may add that amount of time again. Still, what can you read in so small a space of time? One word, two words, three words? Certainly not a phone number and web address. And probably not a tagline or other secondary copy, either.
    So, don't worry that relatively unimportant secondary copy needs to be "big and legible." Secondary copy should in no way compete with the dominant element(s). The dominant copy should clearly stand out and be scannable and digestible almost instantly.

    For foot traffic, there is ample opportunity to stop and read all the copy, no matter if it's excessive. And, of course, for someone walking or standing in front of the sign, letter size is not really an issue. Consequently, do not be afraid to significantly downsize secondary copy. Even better, eliminate it.
    I often draw a layout with all the copy asked for by the client, then I draw a second layout that has been edited, simplified. Often, a client, presented with both side by side, can see the visual improvement of the sign with less copy.

    One of the primary goals of an initial consultation with a sign buyer should be to reduce the number of elements in the composition as much as possible. Of course, to a client, everything is important. But a sign that is bloated with verbiage, all of it vying for attention, is easy for a viewer to ignore. It simply becomes too much work to read. And, obviously, a sign that no one is inclined to read is almost the same as not having a sign. It is ineffective.

    Back to the subject of grouping. The phone number and the address in the gold panel can be grouped together, too, so that they become more of a unit. Simply move them closer to each other, separating them with a bullet, perhaps. Then, center the entire unit left to right.

    I would also move the word "The" farther away from the border. I actually like the original idea of executing it in script and allowing it to overlap "Oaks" slightly.
    Elements that are close to each other are perceived as belonging together or being related. This is the design principle of proximity. Allowing elements to touch or overlap is the strongest form of proximity. When you overlap two elements, it helps make them look like they are a unit. This can be helpful if the two elements do not otherwise look like they belong together. For example, if they are not related by color or if they are composed of two totally different letter styles. Proximity keeps them visually grouped.

    .................

    There are, no doubt, dozens of ways this sign could be designed and be effective.
    Phillip Newell's and Johnny Best's both look good. They just exhibit two different looks, personalities.
    And though I speak of certain things as if they are concrete rules, they aren't so much rules as they are best practices and proven principles. The minute I say that something is a rule that can never be broken, someone breaks it and makes it work.

    Few sign layouts are perfect, anyway. Maybe stop signs are perfect layouts. But occasionally someone still fails to stop.

    Brad
     
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  3. TheProDesigns

    TheProDesigns ProDesigns - Graphic Design Company

     
  4. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    Very thoughtful and detailed response and I appreciate the information. I tried a bullet point and making the text closer in the yellow bar and it looked wrong because the text was different length. Thanks for the explanation about proximity.
     
  5. bob

    bob Major Contributor

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    Stop taking this job and yourself so seriously. It's just a sign albeit with too much copy. Just make the damn thing, collect your money, and get on with what passes for your life.

    It's just a sign. No matter what you do, good, bad, or indifferent, it will have no effect whatsoever on the course of history.
     
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  6. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    If you read you'd find out the sign was made already. I'm taking the feedback here and trying to get better for future work.
     
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  7. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    bradinsurance.jpg
     
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  8. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    .
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2017
  9. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    .
     
  10. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    So, what happened to what you originally wrote ?? I saw it. Second thoughts ??
     
  11. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    Yes, second thoughts and then an accidental double post trying to to the first one...
     
  12. Rick

    Rick Certified Enneadecagon Designer

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    The yellow is very harsh, I would stay away from primary colors.
    When it comes to apartment logo/layout, most client want to give the impression or luxury, comfort or home, your color choices are a punch in the gut, legible yes, but like a hazard sign, not comfortable living.

    When I do a layout/design, I try to not overwhelm the client with a bright background, they may hate the layout based on how I present it and not by the quality of the layout, so I would take it easy on the background colors.

    I would take your layout skills seriously until you get to the point where you can do a layout with ease, only then can you take it easy.
     

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  13. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    "Certified Enneadecagon Designer"

    Enneadecagon? One of the noble houses of Westeros? Designer of Dragons!
     
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  14. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    Whachoo talkin' bout, Willis ??

    I believe you're speaking of 'String Art' there, huh ??​
     
  15. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    Rick has upgraded his certification from a 4 node square with smoothed cusp nodes to a 19 sided enneadecagon (simulated approximation of a circle using ugly short straight line segments - AKA AutoCAD circa 1982 ).
     
  16. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    Daenerys Targaryen is so pretty.
     
  17. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    Are you guys speaking English anymore? Lol
     
  18. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    What Rick, bob and Brad say... Did this watching Auburn getting beat by UCF.
    I think a pic attracts the customer's attention and puts you above the people who just stack type. oaksthe.jpg
     
  19. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    Those acorns are hanging mighty low...
     
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  20. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    Texas...You must have watched the hosts on CNN on NewYears Eve. Now your noticing someone’s nuts.
     
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