Graphic Design

Signage & Wayfinding

Applying your brand and messaging to the spatial environment.

What is signage & wayfinding design?

Wayfinding is a process of understanding the relationship between physical spaces and applying design principles to help people navigate them. Signage is one aspect of wayfinding, and can be applied to range of needs, from simply identifying a business (e.g. graphics on a shop window) to persuasion (e.g. ‘come to our event’ or ‘buy this house’) or navigation (e.g. ‘the toilets are over there’).

Frequently asked questions

What are the key elements of signage and wayfinding?

There’s lots to consider when thinking about signage and wayfinding. Most important is to consider the purpose of your communication – what are you trying to achieve with your signage? Once you know what influence you’d like your communication to have, key elements of design include logo placement, optimal text count, background colours, content and fabrication.

What signage options are there?

Signage formats and construction come in all shapes, sizes and budgets. It is important to consider your expectations when beginning a signage project. If you are concerned about cost, or just feel unsure, speak to us about getting some ballpark costs for production and installation.

Cost-effective solutions include banners, a-frames, flags, corflutes, laser-cut vinyl, acrylic, timber and aluminium. More expensive applications include hand-painted lettering or foiling, back-lit signs, vehicle livery, electronic signage, illuminated signs, individual cut letters and neon signs.

What about installation?

It’s also worth considering the installation itself. Do you need strata or landlord permission? Will your installer need to use a cherry picker or safety harness? Does your local council need to be notified? These are all questions and considerations we’re well placed to help you with.

Our signage & wayfinding design process

Stage 1: Discovery

We begin by finding out about your specific project and putting together a detailed brief. What is it? Who is it for? When do you need it? What does it need to do? We will always combine this with a site visit to determine the locations with the best visibility for your installations.

Stage 2: Design

Once we have a completed brief, we move onto the design stage. Here we will utilise supplied content and your brand identity to mock up concepts over site photographs to ensure an accurate representation of our ideas.

Stage 3: Production

Production on any signage project requires a high-level of training and experience. We organise all specifications, quotes and production from within the studio to keep your project streamlined and stress-free.

About Shorthand

A design studio

Shorthand is a design studio based in Newcastle, Australia. We blend expertise in brand, digital and graphic design to help businesses define and communicate their brand. Our name, taken from the classic writing-system of symbolic abbreviation, represents the fundamentals of our work – distilling the essence of a brand and expressing it visually.

Shorthand was founded by Amanda and Scott Kirkman in 2014, when the pair brought several years of experience at top creative agencies in Melbourne back home to Newcastle. We are a design studio, not an agency. We are intentionally small, favouring quality over quantity. We don’t have account managers or a sales team, so you know you will be working directly with us. We bring our big agency experience to projects of all sizes, partnering with brands from Sydney to San Francisco.

Interested in partnering with us on your next project? Let’s talk!

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