We’ve all heard the old quote about complacency being the enemy of progress. As a business this is something we take to heart. The world of athletic graphics is moving at lightning pace with each program pushing to outdo their competitors. Our goal is to find and embrace the latest materials and techniques that propel our product line forward.
We believe that actively listening to the industry and embracing this change is the way to stay on top of the athletic signage game. Check out a few of our favorite materials and techniques currently being applied to signage.
Laser-Cut and Engraved Elements
The laser engraver is not new to the sign industry, but we are finding innovative, new uses when it comes to Team Fitz products. Our favorite use is to cut acrylic. The laser not only offers a precision cut, but also applies a smooth flame-polished finish to the outside edges. To get this look you would traditionally have to use a router table to cut the acrylic and then take a torch to the edge to give it a smooth, polished edge. Now the laser engraver can do it all at once with greater consistency.
Laser-cut acrylic is a fantastic material for athletic signage. It can be cut to any shape and is best used as an embellishment to a traditional sign or record board. Because the acrylic is clear, it adds a depth and texture that captures the light making the acrylic elements pop. Mascots, school logos, and lettering are the most common shapes requested by our customers.
Chrome and Metallic-Colored Vinyls
Vinyl manufacturers today produce materials in virtually any metallic color. No longer do teams need to settle for a muted grey or mustard yellow as a substitute for metallic silver and gold. These vibrant, polished metallic films can make a big impact when incorporated into athletic signage.
In addition to the chrome and metallic gold, many other colors are available in a metallic finish such as metallic chrome red. We recommend using these metallic films in combination with matte-finished materials to maximize contrast and amplify the effect.
Layered or Standoff Features
Customers are frequently looking for “something that pops”. Some of our favorite pieces have elements of layered PVC or acrylic that literally pop off the surface of the sign. Just one or two key elements in a design are usually enough to make the piece stand out. The most common elements that get the layered treatment are school logos, mascot and state shapes, and lettering.
Combination of Materials and Textures
We sometimes joke that schools, prisons, and hospitals all feature the same institutional beige cinder block walls. These long and drab hallways can easily be brought to life by adding color, texture, and pattern. Textures and patterns can often be achieved with a printed piece, but sometimes it makes sense to bring in materials with actual physical texture.
We want the audience to take note and even be tempted to reach out and touch the pieces we build. If we do our job, our signs will not only communicate the necessary information, but also create a unique visual impact the school can’t get anywhere else.
Need a few ideas on how to bring your athletic facilities to life? Reach out today. Whether you are looking for a new and bold or a more traditional look, we would be happy to get started on a custom design for your project.