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Signs are a form of communication that dates back to cave drawings, but have evolved with the advent of wide format digital printing technology into graphic images that can wrap skyscrapers and cover 53,000 square feet and measure 105 feet by 505 feet or more. The purpose, however, remains the same—to communicate a message and attract attention.
Modern signage began around the time of the Greeks and Romans when fixed locations for trade became more common. These early businesses displayed symbols or trade signs made of stone or terracotta outside their establishments. Additionally, the Romans introduced the first road sign system to indicate distances and direction. After the Dark Ages, signs became more than just utilitarian. The increase in commerce, trade, and wealth encouraged more elaborate and artistic trade signs. Merchants began to compete for the most elaborate signs by using intricate carvings, bright paint, gilding, and ornamental iron in their designs.
Once this sign competition began, businesses continued to latch on to new technological developments such as, electronic illuminated signs, LED displays, and programmable message boards. Starting in 2000, the emergence of large format digital printing began to change the industry.
Wide format digital is now considered mainstream although changes in technology, materials, and markets continue to expand the range. Our HP Latex 360 is one of the newest innovations. It delivers sharp, consistent repeatable image quality with high-efficiency curing, six colors, and 1200 dpi. It produces indoor and outdoor prints up to 64 inches on a variety of media including textiles and wallpaper. And it uses water-based HP latex ink, which is better for the environment, odorless, and approved for healthcare settings.
The ways and places to display your message today are almost endless—storefront signs, sidewalk graphics, window graphics, wall graphics, point-of-purchase signs, vehicle wraps, building wraps, banners, yard signs, lobby signs, backlit displays, menu boards, sandwich boards. And signs continue to be one of the most effective ways of communicating a message to either to the general public or a target audience. Signs made good business sense ages ago and even more so today.