Living in Hull we have a wide variety of cultures and personalities; I suppose that is what makes Hull quite unique as together as a community we focus on making Hull a better place (or in other terms a ‘City of Culture’). Like any other city Hull has its advantages and disadvantages and by looking at the information below I can prove this.
- ‘The cost of living is around 40% lower than the national average’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722107&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
- ‘Hull is at the heart of Europe and trades with the rest of the world’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722119&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
- ‘Chip Spice is also another variation, which origninated in Kingston Upon Hull’ – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seasoned_salt
- ‘A thriving ferry terminal that has the world’s largest passenger ferries’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722115&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
- Hull has ‘the longest single-span suspension bridge in Britain’ – https://uk.news.yahoo.com/hull-uk-city-of-culture–best-things-landmarks-humber-tourism-121548412.html
Well it seems I don’t exactly have to post a few disadvantages as this next link just shows what people think, open up this link to find out what disadvantages some people believe Hull holds. http://www.knowhere.co.uk/Hull/East-Riding-of-Yorkshire/Northern-England/info/worstthings
One disadvantage that interested me was this quote ‘The dingy boarded up shops’. Currently in Hull we have a large problem which is the construction. If you are not aware Hull is having a major make-over; most of the paths and roads have been dug up so that we have a brand new nice-looking town by 2017 (Hull City of Culture), however the construction is not due to be completed until at least 2018 or 2019. Recently it has been all over the news and social media that this construction is causing all sorts of problems and one of them being shops not able to stay in business as they are losing customers. Not many people want to visit Hull any more.
Here is just one of the shops shutting down due to these reasons. The owners of Eden stated to the Hull Daily Mail that they have had a 50% reduction in footfall since the construction. Considering the shop from the front looks quite advertising this comes to a surprise to everyone even popular shops such as Brooks, Mootch and The Tea Shop are struggling for business.
For our Creative Futures project our task is to look at the graphics of a selection of shops then describe and explain why they look like that, what their business is and do people shop there?
Although this sign is rather large most people either don’t know that it is there or have troubles getting to it. I have been myself and I must admit it can get quite busy, however a bit of colour may have helped this sign although it does light up on a night (useful for when customers want to go for a nice evening meal. The font is quite smart and easy to read, maybe could be improved by adding a space in between the two words and also maybe adding the logo so people know what it is instantly.
When doing our research we came across this little restaurant. I have never heard of or seen it before, however they have an advertising menu in the front window and a graphics design to match the style of the place. From here it looks quite small but it does extend quite far (not able to see at this moment in time due to construction). The construction actually helped in this case as I was looking for which way to go I came across it.
The theme is consist throughout based on ‘Old Grandad’s Shed’ according to their Website as the place is full of interesting objects such as old typewriters, an old diving mask and the odd garden equipment. The sign out front has a washed out green/blue coloured painted wood which already indicates an ‘old shed’ sort of style also I find that most American Steakhouses use this sort of style as people find it unique and interesting. The font is quite smart I see this as a representation of the grandad; old (the washed out wood) with a great personality that lasts forever (the paint) and smart, filled with plenty of knowledge and adventurous (the font). Also during the night time I believe that the sign will look quite nice with the lights above shinging on it.
Unlike the other two images Kapow! has a slogan and a website which I see as an advantage as it encourages the customer to look online as well as instore. I am a really big fan of this shop as it is great for all your retro favourites; featuring merchandise from classics such as ‘FraggleRock’, ‘Wacky Races’, ‘Looney Tunes’, ‘The Goonies’, ‘Batman’, ‘The Blues Brothers’ and more. Even though the store sells all of this cool stuff I feel that the sign lets it down. It is an interesting sign compared to others, but I think an image of something retro or a bit more colour could possible improve the quality of the store front. I do however like the way in which the word Kapow draws your attention, with the word Kapow being written in comic books we all know from common knowledge that words like ‘bang’, ‘pow’ and ‘kapow’ are loud ways of showing someone being hit without the violence so in our heads that word automatically shouts out to us they way we see it in comics.
Studio 1-West – Orlando, Kissimee
No longer in Hull I have expanded my search to Orlando, Florida, Kissimee. The reason I chose to research this area of America is because I have been here several times down this same street and all of the shops stand out incredibly compared to Hull. First of all the shops are more spread out which gives the owner more of an opportunity to expand on the design. Here for example this whole shop has been Americanised. This shop is very patriotic, however, I feel that the only downfall is with shops like this is the fact that this shop as an example does not sell patriotic items such as the American flag or presidential merchandise it sells a large quantity of Disney products with being quite close to the Disney parks (non-official Disney products) and also the typical tourist merchandise such as t-shirts with funny slogans.
The reason the store uses this graphic design style is to draw people in, some of the stores in this area are completely honest and advertise on simply selling cheap items as that appeals great to British tourists as we like a good deal and have most likely run out of money due to being at the Disney Parks and paying their prices. Even though the store isn’t very patriotic on the inside I must say that I have found some great deals and great items in there; and the graphics was one of the reasons I wanted to go there beacause the bold blue and red from the American flag stands out perfectly.
Magic Castle Gift Kingdom – Orlando, Kissimee
Here is one of my favourite stores ever for graphics design. At first glance I would assume that this was either a magic shop or a costume shop, although it really is a gift shop. Again similar to the previous image, it is using graphics to persuade people to come inside their store. Also if you look closely they have the tactic of cover the windows with prices and sales so that we have to look inside to see what it sells. Stores with this type of style draw in the attention of children espicially. I like the way that the wizard covers most of the building from left to right; my eyes travel from left to right and I view the whole thing with interest. I would say the colours are a bit faded but we have to take this into consideration as in England we don’t have the warm weather in which they do, therefore the sun fades some of the colours away. To describe it briefly I would say colourful and quirky.
Gala Gifts – Orlando, Kissimee
Another one similar to the above, however this one doesn;’t have any typography. They have only placed the typography onto the sign outside (meant for people in cars to view). In a way that is a good idea but all of these places just seem to be named a ‘Gift shop’ but after doing my research I found out the real names (as you can see from above this one is called ‘Gala Gifts’.I like the way in which they use cartoon, friendly animals to again persuade children to drag their parents into the store. Also I like the design on the roof as they haven’t just focused on the object they have actually fully painted the roof also.
Cici’s Pizza and Bonanza Golf – Orlando, Kissimee
This place was right next to my hotel and I must say it was very popular. Seeing a golf course on a mountain looks cool, fun and adventurous and even though the main name Bonanza isn’t included on the mountain, just adding the one word golf makes it easy for people to know what it is. Simple is always key. My main worry is the font and colour of the text. I feel that orange blends in with the mountain way to much and should be maybe blue or green, however with a waterfall at either side I think that is what makes the typography stand out. As well as having the golf sign they also have an advertisement for cars to see as they go past, this on the other hand has the full name of the place; still I would find these American Store more interesting if they had logos.
Practically next door (almost colliding with the golf place) is Cici’s Pizza. This place is awesome as it sells so many unique pizzas and it also has pizza puddings (e.g. pizza apple slices). My only concern would be that it is quite hidden as it only has it’s advertisement on the board outside along with the other ads and it is similar to the gift shop at the golf centre (Cici’s on the left next to Bonanza Golf Sign and Golf Gift Shop on the right). Even though it is such a nice place it doesn’t have the graphics behind it to support it.
TD Bank – New York
I chose to look at New York next as it is a great place for advertisement obviously. This building isn’t as extravagant as the some of the next ones you will see but I chose it as it is very repetitive giving the customer to view the sign all the way down the street. It has four of the same signs all on one side of the building as well as other little advertisements around it. The design is simple but the colour stands out great and is quite smart and simplistic, overall I just think it is a unique way of advertising.
Times Square – New York
Advertisements and shop fronts everywhere. Times Square is know for it’s graphics design using digital and non-digital advertisements and shop fronts. This area is mainly full of top brands such as McDonald’s and The Disney Store, I like the way in which some shops don’t even have to have their name anywhere as they are so popular that they just use there logo. In films a lot of these shops pay to get their store featured in the movie. I can imagine a property in this area would cost quite a lot.
Times Square – New York
I like the Shop front for this ‘Toys ‘R’ Us’ Store as they have their genuine logo/font over the doorway yet use the whole of the store windows to not advertise what is inside their store unlike other places but to advertise upcoming merchandise for a new children’s film. Seeing this as a store front is incredible as I can’t imagine seeing such a large method of attracting customers like this in Hull and if so it won’t be the best of advertisements.
Finally I chose to write about the Radio City Music Hall. The main reason I decided to write about this is because the hall uses old techniques rather than new to attract customers. The old fashioned unique lights in those particular fonts screams retro to anyone that walks past. Also you can tell this place is successful just by looking at how many people are interested in this attraction. I really like the way that they have used more than one font. In most cases you can’t usually get away with this, however in this case the font is what makes this place so stylish. The colours used are great as the red and blue are contrasting and the gold is a really nice gentle touch as a background.
Overall I believe that other countries have a great use of graphics design whereas Hull occasionally has some good designs but most shops are ruined due to criminals using graffiti or tools to ruin signs. With Hull being a small city compared to New York I feel that New York is more of a popular tourist destination and therefore needs more designs and development.