"Computers and vinyl technologies have completely transformed the sign painting industry and as a consequence hand lettering and sign painting has become a lost art.
Early in my career I found it very useful to be as versatile as possible and to learn as many painting techniques as I could, to help get me through the lean-times. These skills have come in quite handy in many of my commercial and fine-art projects from billboards, signs and menu-boards to set-painting, super-graphics, logos and mascots.
I have always specialized in custom, hand-painted one-of-a-kind projects, so advanced printing and computerized technologies are not a threat… but rather an opportunity to apply my craft in new and exciting ways – and in doing so
to better serve a diverse clientele.
Mike Stevens’ ‘Mastering Layout' was a vital resource in building my skills with a brush and improving my layouts and designs." -Roberto Quintana
this best-selling book covers the fundamental
principles of layout for signs.
Includes 13 handwritten alphabets for reference
and all the universal rules in font layout.
This technical book is just as appreciated by old hands
in lettering as it is by newcomers.
A real classic.
Mike Stevens provides a detailed, comprehensive
and relatively easy-to-understand overview of
the analytical skills that can be applied to a
Sign Painting or Writer's job.
The fundamental principles in the layout of fonts and characters are conveyed in detail and how several graphic elements are organized into a perfect overall picture.
invaluable sign painting knowledge on 127 pages.
1) Natural Layout
2) Format: A Design Element
3) Copy Interpretation & appropriate Images
4) Negative Space
5) Line Value
7) Selecting Alphabets
9) Super Graphics
10) Informal Layout
11) Troubleshooting Your Layout
Died: April 20, 1989
From Signcraft magazine.
Few sign artists in recent times have had as much influence on sign layout as sign artist/author Mike Stevens.
Mike Stevens died suddenly on April 20, 1989.
Mike was the author of
Mastering Layout: The Art of Eye Appeal
Ninety-Nine Showcards: A Photo Album,
and produced two audiotapes and a video tape.
He recently contributed a series of articles on layout to SignCraft.
Since his death, SignCraft has heard from scores of sign artists — some long-time friends and others
who knew Mike only through his books, tapes and articles.
All mentioned his impact on their work, their business,
and in many cases, their lives.
Signs, Totems & Super-Graphics
In 1980, we published the first issue of SignCraft Magazine from our commercial sign shop, laying out the pages on the same drawing table we used for sign sketches and proposals. Our plan was to create a way to share ideas and information that would make signmaking easier, more creative and more profitable. Computers were not yet involved in sign making, so the focus was on hand painted, sandblasted, carved and cutout signs and lettering.
In the years that followed computers changed the sign industry (along with the rest of the world!) Our coverage gradually expanded to include cut vinyl, digital prints and CNC routed signage.
Nonetheless, SignCraft’s intention has remained the same: To give those who make signs the information, ideas and inspiration that helps make their signs more effective, their work easier and their business more profitable.
The November/December 2020 issue marked the final print edition of SignCraft Magazine after 235 consecutive issues—more than 5000 articles and over 20,000 idea-packed photos. Our articles are now delivered online to our members.
You’ll get ideas and information you can’t find anywhere else. Over the past year, SignCraft readers received over 100 articles, over 150 time-saving tips and shortcuts and nearly 1000 inspiring photos.
You’ll be in touch with shop owners who understand the work you do. You’ll visit their shops and watch videos of techniques and time-saving shortcuts.
You’ll can use the online Sign Pricing Guide pricing calculator–where you can price everyday sign work in just three clicks, with pricing based on the overhead level that fits your shop.
You’ll have full access to SignQuote Pro app, a web app that lets you price even more types of signs with even more flexibility of substrates and shop rates
Join today and find out why thousands of sign professionals around the world depend on SignCraft to make their signs and their businesses more successful!
Call: 800-204-0204 | 239-939-4644 | Fax: 239-939-0607
US Mail: SignCraft, PO Box 60031, Fort Myers, FL 33906.