Monday, September 19, 2005

Making banners and placards is easy and fun

Some people like hand-written banners and placards. I believe I have graduated them. I like billboards with neat writings that appear to have come out of a professional print shop.

With trial and error I have developed a method of making professional looking banners and placards. Here it is.
  1. Based on the available space on the intended placard or banner calculate the approximate height and width of each letter of the publicity text. I say approximate because you will be doing some adjustments later.
  2. Use WordArt in MS Word software to generate large sized letters of the text. In the Word environment, WordArt is opened by clicking on the tilted 'A' icon, normally present in the toolbox at the bottom. [For a banner I recently made I printed each letter on 11X17 paper. Used text height of 16"; let the program take care of the width--for the same height, each letter has a different width (e.g., 'W' is wider than 'U'; read the previous sentence again and see the difference for yourself). In WordArt environment I kept the letters hollow and used dotted, faint lines to be the outlines of the letter--this saved me printer ink. I used just one Word file. Once I settled on the height of the letter, the page borders, the outline of the letter, etc., I printed the first letter and then kept changing the letter in the same Word file.]
  3. Once a letter is printed out cut the paper around the letter. In case of placard directly paste the letters on the placard; use a straightedge and a marker to thicken the outlines (if you have printed hollow letters). To make a banner, pin up the letters on the fabric; using a marker, trace the outline of each letter on the banner fabric; remove the pinned up letter; fill the outlined space with the color of your choice.

There you have it, publicity material that looks adorable.