Inspired by Signs

Artistic and other interpretations of ghost signs.


I recently (28 October) hosted ‘Font Sunday’ on Twitter with the theme of ‘fading fonts’ to mark the changing of the clocks and the fading light it signifies. Among the contributions made was a tweet from Eliza Brownjohn, daughter of the designer Robert Brownjohn (1925-1970) […]

London Street Level by Robert Brownjohn


1
Earlier this year I was lucky to attend the launch of Lost & Foundry, a collection of fonts created and published by Fontsmith in collaboration with M&C Saatchi. They are inspired by various of pieces of historic signage in Soho, and funds raised from their […]

Fonts Inspired by Ghost (and other) Signs


One of the ‘bonus’ stops on my Bankside Ghostsigns Walk is a pair of signs on the back The Borough Welsh Congregational Chapel (Doyce Street and Great Guildford Street). These convey the euphemistic line, ‘Commit No Nuisance‘, which translates to ‘please don’t urinate here’. Many […]

Commit Some Nuisance for Bankside



The Grand Exhibition of the Pre-Vinylite Society is now showing for four days at the Bargehouse, behind the OXO Tower on London’s South Bank. Visitors can take in the c.30 pieces from an international cast of contemporary sign and lettering artists, each inspired by entries […]

Now Open: The Grand Exhibition of the Pre-Vinylite Society



Digital artist Andrei Lacatusu has created Social Decay, a series of images depicting a possible future of washed-up digital companies and their derelict signs. They are ‘faux’, although in a different sense to those that I’ve documented in the past. An article on Digital Arts […]

Social Decay from Andrei Lacatusu



1
The following article is re-posted from the original on Better Letters. This August we’ll be opening a very special sign painting exhibition within the public-facing part of Letterheads 2018: London Calling. It is being curated by Meredith Kasabian of Best Dressed Signs and the Pre-Vinylite […]

The Grand Exhibition of the Society of Sign Painters






Michelle Heron is a London-based painter with a paticular fascination for old shops and shop fronts. Her paintings depict iconic fascias, many of which have been lost since she turned her attention to them, and some that survive in a state of perpetual uncertainty. As […]

Michelle Heron’s Fantastic Fascias


1
Independently of each other I have been sent photos of this beautiful Paris ghost signs by Wim Dammers and book contributor Leisa Clements. It is a remarkably elaborate piece of work, including picturials in other sections. This is isn’t surprising as it is advertising the […]

E. Gautier’s Beautiful Paris Ghost Signs



1
On one of my walking tours back in 2014 guests had the opportunity to see this reveal of a newsagent and tobacconists’ sign at No.5 Stoke Newington Church Street. Starlove, as it was known, occupied the premises from at least 1962 until the late 1970s […]

Numbers 3-7 Stoke Newington Church Street





Craig Winslow is an experiential designer who has recently turned his gaze towards ghostsigns, and the creative possibilities offered by applying his expertise in light projection mapping. The idea first came to him during a trip across America and has grown since. In essence it […]

Light Capsules from Craig Winslow



E.Mono Shop Front 2
Back in 2011 an old 1920s shop fascia was revealed on Kentish Town High Street. The nature of the E.Mono business remains a mystery but the new occupants, a kebab shop, decided the sign was worth keeping and named their shop after the historic proprietors. […]

E.Mono in North London



Fading sign painted on a wall advertising Dr King 1
This Melbourne ghostsign is a recent reveal and was captured by Nick Gadd, the writer behind Melbourne Circle. Nick’s research into the sign was recently published in an anthology of papers titled ‘Melbourne Subjective‘. He investigates the sign and creates a tentative hypothesis about who […]

Dr King: The Story of a Melbourne Ghostsign by Nick ...


Brimay Safety Matches Ghost Sign
One of the things I most enjoy about my work on ghostsigns is getting involved with student projects using the signs as a springboard into other creative processes. I’ve helped on a number of these, most recently the work of Gloria Soria at London College […]

Ghosting with Ghost Signs: An Experiment in Risography




Montage of vintage signs from Scotland
This fabulous montage of Scottish ghostsigns was created by Dave Cowan of Scotland in Detail. It is available as a print from his store and he says the following of his work and this creation. I’ve been fascinated by these old signs for a few […]

Scotland in Detail: Vintage Signs from Dave Cowan


Different letters found in Dalston assembled to make the phrase 'Club Labrynth' 3
This is my creation following Sunday’s Type Safari in Dalston with Type Tasting. It is a composite of various pieces of public lettering and signage that I photographed while on ‘safari’ with Type Tasting’s Sarah Hyndman. The brief was to bring a phrase that represents […]

Rediscovering Club Labrynth on a Type Safari