Straight from The Cheese Monkeys

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A terrific discussion/book review/batch of links going on over at Design Observer more about signs made by hand, without thought of design or typography (see: what nearly everyone on the planet does). Largely, the article is in reference to how essential and unusual the normalcy of most of our chicken scratch seems when compared to the alternative. In short, sort a quick bit of breezy psychology about typography. The article has some terrific quotes:

As communication goes, signage is perhaps one of the more obvious forms: declarative and in your face, its role isn’t to gently cajole or subtly persuade, but to call a spade a spade. A sign — particularly a handmade one — is a life preserver, a visible siren seeking immediate response… yet some of the most compelling examples come from not from professionals, but from real people doing real things. And they’re doing it with magic markers, poster paint, and ball-point pens.

And here, very reminiscent of the scene from Chip Kidd’s The Cheese Monkeys where Sorbeck grades students on how well they’re able to hitch rides back home, out of the cold, using only a sign of their own creation:

The recent serious (if decidedly less tragic) New York City transit strike brought on its own signage vigilantes. If urgency was once typified by hailing a cab with a cell phone surgically connected to your ear, last week it was all about the handmade sign: how big, now noticeable, how clearly it made itself known to passersby.