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Signage Terminology Made Simple: F to I

There is nothing worse than an industry so full of complicated jargon that both clients and contractors have difficulty navigating its vocabulary just to get the job done. Signage and graphic design are both no exception to this so we have decided to compile some important “words” to help everyone navigate the industry a little easier. When you want professional help, starting with the group that defines the terms of the industry (in practice and in writing) is the best place to start. And, Behrends Group is doing just that.

Sign Terminology

Finish – The finish of your metal signage is critical to determining how the final product looks and can change dramatically according to what is chosen. Depending on the metal used, there are a variety of different finishes available, making your opportunity for complete customization very wide. Some of the many finishes we offer include: painted, powder coated, satin natural anodized, polished, mirror polished, satin finish, chrome plated, patina, natural bronze, orbital finish, brushed metal, sandblasted and much more.

Font – The font of your sign is determinative of your voice and brand. Believe it or not, the style of your sign’s lettering can confer legitimacy, trust, friendliness and a myriad of other social cues to your future clientele so don’t underestimate the power of how it looks! Sometimes called the typeface (referring to the font family), the weight, style, condensation, width, slant, italicization, ornamentation and design will all be important factors for your consideration. If you don’t have a fluency with fonts, leave it to the design experts to take your brand information and transform it to effectively communicate everything you need and more.

Freestanding Signs – Freestanding signs are sometimes mistaken for “floor stands”, which are portable signs that does not need permanent installation. However, freestanding signs (sometimes called pylon signage) are much larger, are permanent, and are found outside all major business areas, including professional centers, strip malls and commercial subdivisions. A well-designed and easy-to-read freestanding sign attracts clients from a distance, increasing visibility and communicating all services offered. These can be double-sided to be seen from both directions of traffic, as well as illuminated with LED lighting to ensure optimal visibility, even after dark. Further add-ons include area branding and electronic message boards that communicate the most current retail information to potential clients. Behrends Group only uses the most durable of materials to ensure the longevity and strength of your freestanding sign for many years to come.

Grave Markers – Grave markers can come in a variety of appearances include single flat grave markers that are flush with the ground, bevel markers (also flush with a slightly raised face), slant markers (in an upright position to mimic an upright headstone), headstones (completely upright) and gravestones (larger headstones that might cover more than one grave). Behrends Group offers memorial signage to adorn grave markers in the form of bronze plaques. Memorial signage is one of the most important parts of the grieving process and is a method of remembrance that involves beautiful, customized signage to pay homage to the life of our loved ones who have passed on. Conscious or not, memorial signage is a crucial method of preserving social memory and passing on history to coming generations. There is a reason there is an entire historical age devoted to bronze – it is long-lasting and offers a sense of stability and permanence to any structure. Pet memorial signage is also available.

Historical Architectural Signs – Architectural signage is a cornerstone of the work that Behrends Group conducts. It is an essential part of the signage industry and tends to refer to any custom sign or signage system that helps with identification and navigation. In the case of historical signage, this generally refers to signs that indicate or communicate the meaning of a place from official governmental sources, historical agencies or other organizations that seek to preserve historical memory in the public. These signs tend to be found in exterior places that are easily accessible to remind and inform of the public of a community’s legacy and a neighborhood’s past.

Icon – An icon refers to any image or symbol that is meant to represent something else. It is usually in the form of a graphic image, a small picture or some object that comes to be associated with something else. An icon can enhance your branding by associating a visual short-hand with your company that is easy to remember and comes to represent your voice. A classic example of this is the Windows icon or McDonald’s Golden Arches. Both of these symbols are inextricable from the companies they represent and are used in their branding and signage to elicit a specific consumer response in their clients.

Interpretive Panels – Interpretive signs refer to large panels that contain a large amount of information on them about the history or significance of a particular place. These will often have some kind of story and additional information on them that helps increase a patron’s knowledge of a place in reading them. Available in full-colour, high resolution and durable materials, interpretive signage can deliver bold diagrams, bright graphics and brilliant text to engage viewers and educate them on their visit. With a variety of materials available to resist the extremes of weather changes and to increase recoverability from vandalism and graffiti, our interpretive panels will stand the test of time.

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