Protestors need signs, and recent demonstrations against newly-introduced American policies have revealed a wide range of graphic designs. While some protestors have access to signs that have been professionally printed…
…and some appear to use actual fonts (if not paying attention to leading, kerning and tracking)…
…the vast majority are DIY affairs. Some appear to have spent significant time developing these signs while others seem hastily-scrawled. Let's look at some of the design elements protestors use to make their signs stand out.
The are several ways to use color. One is to write a simple message in the colors of the U.S. flag, in order to signify that the statement represents the protestor's notion of what America ought to be.
Others use the color red in order to highlight a particular word:
Still others write each line in alternating colors, suggesting the call-and-return of sing-song group chants:
Contrasting colors can also be used just to give the sign some visual pop:
As technology marches forward, like protestors, some are incorporating LEDs:
Flags, of course, are the big one.
The classic "no ____ allowed" red circle bisected by a diagonal line is popular...
...although folks can't seem to agree on which way the cross goes:
The heart is another popular one:
Mathematical symbols are often used as shorthand:
Symbols are also occasionally combined:
Another approach is to take existing designs, whether ordinary campaign signs or standard signs related to non-political matters, and co-opt them to convey a message:
From a design standpoint, legibility and brevity are important. Protest signs are essentially bumper stickers, not essay questions. Too much verbiage in small letters—however neat—run the risk of being visually drowned out:
Too many contrasting colors can make a sign difficult to read:
As I live downtown, protest marches passing my window in the evening have become a common sight. I haven't seen any truly stand-out graphic designs yet, but I'll keep my eyes peeled.
Don't have an account? Join Now
Create a Core77 Account
Already have an account? Sign In
Please enter your email and we will send an email to reset your password.
Another symbol that's gaining: ⊥