This is my 100th post! Hard to believe I’ve written 100 posts on this blog, but it’s been fun, so I think I’ll keep going. 😉
On to more exciting things… I decided to create a theme this week for my Project 365, but alas, it’s in the middle of a week. So, I will just post this themed week now and the few shots from before and a few shots from later to make another week. Confused?! Just roll with it.
One of the subjects I have found most fun to shoot is signage. I may see the same sign hundreds of times, but until I really stop to look at it and appreciate the design of it, the carefully chosen colors, the typography and the layout, it’s just a sign. So, after looking back through my photos and adding a few more shots this week from an awesome evening downtown last night, I put together some signage for this week’s street photography theme. Beside each one I’ve added some detail (my thoughts on the shot), but please feel free to leave feedback. It really helps to have input from others and to see things from a different perspective.
Day 165 (April 14, 2014): Signage: Ice Cream Parlor. The shades of maroon balance each other out and the architecture of the building is more visible with the colors around the window frames. I also noticed in post that the street lamps left a shadow on the coffee cup sign that looks like the silhouette of a man’s face. Do you see it?
Day 166 (April 15, 2014): Signage: Sushi and window shopping. I honestly wasn’t going to share this one, but the more I came back to it, I decided I really did like it. The signs themselves are all very different and the people on the street, talking or window shopping, make it more like a story.
Day 167 (April 16, 2014): Signage: Good Eats. This photo has several signs in it, and each one is very different from the others. I really liked the vertical “Good Eats” sign with the arrow pointing to the front of the building. Then, there’s a much smaller sign with a hand pointing to the storefront. I’m not entirely sure if they are meant to complement one another, but it works somehow.
Day 168 (April 17, 2014): Signage: Coffee shop. I have a personal love for coffee shops. And coffee…obviously. 😉 This sign always catches my eye when I’m downtown, but it is quite plain. I think that in this frame, the people around the table add more to the image. I’m finding that even if I’m really going for a shot of a sign, having human subjects involved might add a little more interest. I also liked the bicycles and the typography on the window that reads “Coffee”, “Espresso” and “Cappuccino” on the right, so I chose to keep them in the frame by not cropping at the pole.
Day 169 (April 18, 2014): Signage: Pizzeria. The signage in this shot makes the eye move more. There’s the vertical sign on the store window on the left and the oval sign above with the lamps illuminating it. I also like the tagline: “Pizza with Passion”. It mimics the heart and the word “amoré”, which I wouldn’t normally ever associate with a pizzeria. Although, I do love pizza!
Day 170 (April 19, 2014): Signage: Antiques. This three-story antique center is a photographer’s (and collector’s) gold mine, but this shot of the sign outside is also interesting. I think that the vertical typography is effective for anyone passing by who might not notice the store. I also like how it’s parallel with the street lamp in the frame. After I started looking more at this shot, I noticed the title “Furniture Hall” on the store front above the windows. It helps add to the architecture and the feel of an antique store, in my opinion. I have an appreciation for architecture, but wouldn’t have ever called myself a huge fan of it. Perhaps with my photography hobby I’ll find that I enjoy it more than I thought.
Day 171 (April 20, 2014): Signage: Record store. The name of this store really caught my eye. It’s ironic, but it also has the feel of a music lover’s hangout. The rounded neon signs in the window break up all the lines, which adds more interest.
- Always have your camera on you. You never know when you’ll come across a sign that catches your eye, even if it didn’t the first 10 times you passed it!
- Some photos don’t necessarily look better in B&W. Color can really add to a story sometimes.
- It’s not always necessary to have people in the frame, but there are times when it creates a more intriguing storyline.
- Always take the time to look up. You never know what you’ll see.
- It’s not just about the signage. Windows, worn bricks, light contrasts and shadows can play a key role in how you see the sign and can make the sign appear differently from one time of day to another.
I hope you enjoyed my theme this week. It was a lot of fun and wasn’t as hard as I thought it might be to round up 7 shots of fun signage. I hope to continue shooting with themes as I continue to develop my passion for street photography. Honestly, it might sound like judging a book by its cover, but if a shop, restaurant or café has an interesting sign, I’m more like to want to go inside and check it out. After all, isn’t that the point behind all the thought that goes into creating signage in the first place?
Do you enjoy signage? What is it about a sign that stands out to you? If there’s an interesting sign in your area, please feel free to share it in the comments.