The term “traditional sign painting” sums up several techniques an artist or artisan has to know in order to be able to pursue his profession as a sign painter. Sadly those techniques are not taught anymore, as computer-designed and vinyl-plotted signs have become standard for quite a while now. But the market for vintage signs seems to grow again and there are more and more self-taught sign painters that revive that old profession. Sign painting involves for example pin striping, reverse glass decoration, gilding, lettering and painting, which utilizes special brushes. The painting on flat surfaces, as well as on bold or sunken reliefs requires greatest expertise. There only some specialists today painting signs professionaly for commercials, although the modern industry of fast copying grows.
Tobias Frere Jones from Hoefler & Frere-Jones said about sign painting:“Their signs are part of every community, as welcome and familiar as a friend, but the sign painters themselves are so rarely known.”
Unfortunately calligraphy, typography and sign painting are professions that are not well known and respected in the design business. But they all still give a certain character and scatter a warm handmade flow of products made with love. We love sign painintg and for supporting this fascinating art, we hope you will have another eye now on the signs you see on the street, handmade by an old brush artist living in a small home and working with joy on every single day.