Archive for Thursday, October 6, 2011

Signs

October 6, 2011

It is a great honor and a rewarding experience for a family in Lansing to receive the yard award. We know a lot of work is involved to keep the yards beautiful for everyone to enjoy, and when we see a sign in their yard we always take a special look.

These signs are provided by the Lansing Pride Committee and are placed around town on a monthly basis during the summer. The sad thing now is one of the last families, who were so excited about winning the award, had it stolen from their yard. It is very upsetting to me to think this type of thing can happen in our town. This is the third time this has happened in the past year. Now our Pride Committee will have to get them replaced but it will take time.

This incident sort of triggered my decision to write about signs in general. Signs are a form of communication that goes back to 18,000 BC. They were found on cave walls or stones. They were more than artistic expressions; they were thought to be ritualistic in nature and a way of illustrating symbolism. Later there were sign painters that used symbols to market their trade, commerce or industry. Now we have logos that do the same thing.

It is so fascinating for me to look back at an old sign painting book and study the different fonts that were used then. There were no computers so each individual sign painter had his own style as every sign was hand lettered. I still get all shook up when I see a Kansas license plate with a Roman I in the middle of Egyptian letters. To explain this a little better, mixing two types of alphabets throws off the spacing and drives me nuts. Most folks would not even notice.

As a sign painter, I always got more satisfaction out of having all the different styles of letters come out of the end of one brush than I have had using the computer letters that have hundreds of fonts to choose from.

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