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The Beauty Of Public Signage: Photo Contest Results

In August we announced the World Of Signage Photo Contest, in which we encouraged designers, artists and photographers to go out with their cameras, shoot attractive typography and public signage and send us the results. The more obvious subjects we received were street signs, building facades, highway markers and road signs, as well as wayfinding graphics (i.e. directional signage) in public venues, subway signs, hotel and office signs and signs in shops, too.

You might be interested in the following related posts:

And The Winner Is… Link

Suicide signage [ large preview4 ]
“Photo taken in the tube in Paris.” Photo taken by Julian Salaun75 from France.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - suicide-signage6

The winner of the digital SLR camera, the Canon EOS Digital Rebel XS (EOS 1000D) is Julian Salaun75 for his photo “Suicide Signage”, taken in the underground tube in Paris. That’s a sign you wouldn’t normally notice; the unconventional perspective is attention-grabbing and makes the photo stand out with its almost ironic placement. Very unique, very original shot. Congratulations to you! (You should have been contacted by now.)

2,500+ submissions, 51 categories Link

We received almost everything one could think of. The response was overwhelming and truly smashing: overall, we received over 2,500 photos, some of which, though, didn’t pass our automated processing or didn’t fit our guidelines.

Overall, almost 1,500 photos are presented in 51 galleries below. With so many emails from so many people across the world, sorting the submissions manually was a daunting task. But that’s what we had to do. It took a lot of time, even with every member of our team spending a significant amount of time reviewing and grouping the photos. Interestingly, the most popular kinds of photos were road and street signs8 and warning and danger signs9, followed by train and airport signs10, venue signs11 and, of course, WC (restroom) signs12. We noticed that some photographers shot the same places at different times — what curious coincidences those were!

Showcase Link

Now, finally, the results are online. Initially, we planned to add personal comments to each one, but that would have taken months. Out of sympathy for our media servers, we have split the submissions across several pages, all linked below. Please check out the pages and comment on the photos you like best. We also hope we have achieved the goal of the contest: to provide our readers with useful and creative ideas on how designers worldwide combine type, visual design and pictograms in public signage.

Showcase Of Most Interesting Submissions Link

Some of the most interesting, creative and original submissions are presented below. Please note: each photo comes with a license, noted in the description of the photo. Before using the images for personal or commercial projects, make sure the license allows you to do so. Also, you can click on the photos for larger versions.

Station Shop Link

Station Shop [ large preview64 ]
“Please use other door – Station Shop.” Created by John Kilpatrick from United Kingdom.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - station-shop65

Subway Scratch Off Link

Subway Scratch Off [ large preview66 ]
“Subway sign for center city Philly @ Market East Station.” Created by Carissa Katz10967 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - subway-scratch-off68

Beware of Falling Coconuts Link

Beware of Falling Coconuts [ large preview69 ]
“Heard about ‘Beware of dogs but coconuts?’.” Created by Kisan Bhat70 from India.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - beware-of-falling-coconuts71

From here you can go anywhere Link

From here you can go anywhere [ large preview72 ]
“Should i see Skadarlija, Skopje, Moscow, maybe Moon? I think I’ll go for a drink at “Sesir Moj 2″.” License: CC BY-NC-ND. Created by Marko Rosic from Serbia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - from-here-you-can-go-anywhere73

Don’t even think of parking here Link

Don’t even think of parking here [ large preview74 ]
“The picture was taken in NYC in 2009.” Designed by Stefan Vogel75 from Germany.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - dont-even-think-of-parking-here76

Chinatown San Fran Link

Chinatown San Fran [ large preview77 ]
“The main street that runs through Chinatown in San Francisco is Grant Street. Here the local color can be seen in the background of the sign.” Created by Jen Mabe from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - chinatown-san-fran78

Caixa Forum Pictograms Link

Caixa Forum Pictograms [ large preview79 ]
“Signage from Caixa Forum museum in Barcelona, minimalistic & neat: Pictograms.” Created by Ivana Vasilj80 from Croatia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - caixa-forum-pictograms81

Name temple signage Link

Name temple signage [ large preview82 ]
“Name of temple.” Photo taken by Bob Soo Kar Shun from Singapore.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - name-temple-signage83

Train Link

Train [ large preview84 ]
“Train Signs.” Designed by Anselm Christophersen17885 from Denmark.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - train86

Skövde Central Station Sign Link

Skövde Central Station Sign [ large preview87 ]
“A really beautiful, accessible and easy to understand sign on a Central Station in Skövde. The sign illustrates bus station, taxi and train platforms. Note that everything is also written in Braille code.” Designed by Igor Jovic88 from Sweden.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - skovde--central-station-sign89

FLine Up Link

Line Up [ large preview90 ]
“Lining up at Incheon International Airport in South Korea.” Licensed: Copyright. Designed by Aurus Sy91 from Philippines.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - line-up92

Number 2 Is Open Link

Number 2 Is Open [ large preview93 ]
“These are personal FedEx Kinkos Booths open to the public. Notice how the signs are slightly angled so they attract attention from down the hall instead of being flat on the surface of the doors… and aren’t the colors just wonderful.” Licensed: All Rights Reserved. Designed by Stephanie King94 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - number-2-is-open95

Wyatt’s Confusion Link

Wyatt’s Confusion [ large preview96 ]
“SCCC 2010 graphic design student, Wyatt stands amongst many directional signs, slightly puzzled.” Photo taken by Chelsey Scheffe from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - wyatts-confusion97

Architect’s Gateway Link

Architect’s Gateway [ large preview98 ]
“3 doors from the side of a building with signage of what an Architect does.” Licensed: Royalty Free (RF) images. Designed by Ellson Yap99 from Singapore.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - architects-gateway100

Beware, polar bears ! Link

Beware, polar bears ! [ large preview101 ]
“Photo taken near Longyearbyen in Svalbard (or Spitzbergen), Norway, in October 2009. This photo shows the non attention paid to the sign, as the lady runs towards the land, where the bears are, as the sign says to beware of polar bears “In the entire Svalbard”.” Created by Brian MathÈ102 from France.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - beware,-polar-bears-!103

Vacancy Link

Vacancy [ large preview104 ]
“Lake Wales – roadside signs: Permanent Vacancy.” Created by Angela Wilson from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - vacancy105

1833 Salamanca Link

1833 Salamanca [ large preview106 ]
“Metal shelled sign filled with original convict mined sandstone blocks.” Licensed: Copyright Steven Clark with permission granted to Smashing Magazine to use in relation to this competition. Designed by Steven Clark from Australia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - 1833-salamanca107

Udderly Tall Link

Udderly Tall [ large preview108 ]
“Best place in town for sweet iced tea & your weekly 2%.” Created by Carissa Katz10967 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - udderly-tall110

Mixed Signals Link

Mixed Signals [ large preview111 ]
“Open, closed, I’m there…?” Photo taken by Kent Downer112 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - mixed-signals113

Welcome to Salt Lake City Link

Welcome to Salt Lake City [ large preview114 ]
“A sign that pretty much sums of living in the city of salt.” Created by Shauna Ehninger115 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - welcome-to-salt-lake-city116

Up the 101 Link

Up the 101 [ large preview117 ]
“This photo was taken at the famous Taipei 101 building. What amazed me is that each floor you went they would write the height of the building. Clear fonts with an inviting graphics.” Photo taken by Michelle Pei Ting Huang118 from Brazil.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - up-the-101119

Magic numbers Link

Magic numbers [ large preview120 ]
“House numbers in brass in the evening.” Photo taken by Jaina121 from UK.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - magic-numbers122

The Room Number Link

The Room Number [ large preview123 ]
“A Picture of a hostel room in thailand.” License: Creative Common Attribution License. Created by Robert Hoppe124 from Germany.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - the-room-number125

Zetland House Type Link

Zetland House Type [ large preview126 ]
“My work is in this building with really great giant type for the floor markings.” Photo taken by Rachel Lipsitz127 from UK.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - zetland-house-type128

High voltage Link

High voltage [ large preview129 ]
“A warning sign in an Indian train.” Created by Harald Krefting130 from United Kingdom.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - high-voltage131

Steep Hahnenkamm Link

Steep Hahnenkamm [ large preview132 ]
“Hahnenkamm Ski Slope in Kitzbuhel, Austria.” Photo taken by Gary Toriello133 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - steep-hahnenkamm134

Dangerman Link

Dangerman [ large preview135 ]
“This is a danger sign found on truck carrying inflammable material in Mumbai. Danger comes in all sizes and flavors :).” Designed by Charvi Mohan Sarfare136 from India.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - dangerman137

End Link

End [ large preview138 ]
“A nice looking warning in Hong Kong about the end of a pedestrian zone.” Licensed: Free use, just give me credit. Designed by John Mertens139 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - end140

Monsoon Morning Link

Monsoon Morning [ large preview141 ]
“Taken today around 8am from tube station.” Licensed: Free. Designed by Yatrik Vyas142 from United Kingdom.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - monsoon-morning143

No jumping be careful the safe Link

No jumping be careful the safe [ large preview144 ]
“Picture taken during my trip to Huashan Mountain in China in 2007.” License: Free. Created by Yann Lorber145 from The Netherlands.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - no-jumping-be-careful-the-safe146

The Exclusion Zone Link

The Exclusion Zone [ large preview147 ]
“The Exclusion Zone of Novosibirsk Hydropower Station.” Photo taken by Maria Demina from Russia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - the-exclusion-zone148

Tehran metro exit Link

Tehran metro exit [ large preview149 ]
“Tehran Metro Bi-Language Exit Sign.” Designed by Arash Haji Vaziri from Iran.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - tehran-metro-exit150

Handrail signage for blind person Link

Handrail signage for blind person [ large preview151 ]
“Staircases’ handrails provide information label for blind people in one of the Nagoya’s (Japan) underground. As easy to notice there are braille characters on the left side of the handrail.” Licensed: Photo was taken by myself. Designed by Piotr Domowicz from Poland.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - handrail-signage-for-blind-person152

Vienna Subway Map Link

Vienna Subway Map [ large preview153 ]
“Vienna Subway Map. I really love the use of Helvetica” Created by Alex Buga154 from Romania.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - vienna-subway-map155

Waiting at Gate #3 Link

Waiting at Gate #3 [ large preview156 ]
“Photo was taken while waiting for a flight connection to Brazil in Carrasco International Airport, Montevideo, Uruguay.” Licensed: Attribution-ShareAlike License. Designed by Fernando Maclen163157 from Argentina.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - waiting-at-gate-3158

Signage dock E zurich 1 Link

Signage dock E zurich 1 [ large preview159 ]
“Zurich Airport Dock E, main walls in the (Sky) Metro station.” Licensed: Sascha Török – Wirksame Gestaltung. Designed by Sascha Török160 from Switzerland.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - signage-dock-e-zurich-1161

Pit Stop Link

Pit Stop [ large preview162 ]
“Photo was taken while waiting for a flight connection to Brazil in Carrasco International Airport, Montevideo, Uruguay.” Licensed: Attribution-ShareAlike License. Designed by Fernando Maclen163157 from Argentina.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - pit-stop164

Texturized wall Link

Texturized wall [ large preview165 ]
“A wall in Hamburg airport, literally texturize with text.” Designed by Pitipat Srichairat from Thailand.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - texturized-wall166

Cphan Look Right Hongkong Link

Cphan Look Right Hongkong [ large preview167 ]
“The sign in Air Asia Airplane that I shot during my travel.” Designed by Christina Phan168 from Indonesia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - cphan-look-right-hongkong169

Filling The White Space Link

Filling The White Space [ large preview170 ]
“Landing Site on Cheung Chau Island, Hong Kong.” Licensed: cc by-nc. Designed by Andrea Surwillo from France.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - filling-the-white-space171

Indian Railway reservation chart table Link

Indian Railway reservation chart table [ large preview172 ]
“Indian’s Railway reservation chart table.” License: Copyrighted. Created by Sroan Sergei Graovac from Croatia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - indian-railway-reservation-chart-table173

Airport Security Check Link

Airport Security Check [ large preview174 ]
“Security at airport.” Created by balajee175 from India.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - airport-security-check176

Bike sign Link

Bike sign [ large preview177 ]
“Bike Sign.” Photo taken by Anselm Christophersen17885 from Denmark.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - bike-sign179

Three Signs In A Row Link

Three Signs In A Row [ large preview180 ]
“I liked the three layers of the signs. One on the glas window, one behind on the wall, and the reflection of one sign on the oppsite side of the glas window..” Designed by Andris Linz181 from Switzerland.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - three-signs-in-a-rowl182

Port Sign Boote Link

Port Sign Boote [ large preview183 ]
“Simple port sign photo in Austria.” Designed by Olariu Ionel184 from Romania.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - port-sign-boote185

Everywhichway Link

Everywhichway [ large preview186 ]
“California Science Center.” Designed by Enrico Santana from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - everywhichway187

Valley of the kings Link

Valley of the kings [ large preview188 ]
“Valley of the kings tombs Egypt.” Designed by Kristina Ivandic from Croatia.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - valley-of-the-kings189

New York Tourism Link

New York Tourism [ large preview190 ]
“A directional sign located in Battery Park, New York, USA.” Photo taken by Tracey L. Warner from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - new-york-tourism191

Rock and roll is here Link

Rock and roll is here [ large preview192 ]
“Just ran into an interesting scene, which is about a sign of a livehouse in Kaohsiung city, Taiwan.” Photo taken by Terry Lai from Taiwan.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - rock-and-roll-is-here193

Life at cross roads Link

Life at cross roads [ large preview194 ]
“Shot at Tamilnadu, India.” Created by Subinkrishna Gopi195 from India.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - life-at-cross-roads196

Signs to far destinations Link

Signs to far destinations [ large preview197 ]
“Signs to destinations all over the world in Gran Canaria.” License: Creative Commons by-nc. Created by Misel Radosavac from Germany.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - signs-to-far-destinations198

Right Way Link

Right Way [ large preview199 ]
“Boracay island Philippines alleyway.” Created by David Coates from UK.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - right-way200

ParkInside Link

ParkInside [ large preview201 ]
“Beautiful vintage, grunge sign found in St. Louis. Taken with iPhone.” Photo taken by Phil Franks from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - parkinside202

Main road signage Link

Main road signage [ large preview203 ]
“Hand painted on a block of a pointed shaped stone indicating that this road is the 1st main road.” Photo taken by Heya Basu204 from India.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - main-road-signage205

Look Link

Look [ large preview206 ]
“Whimsical, typographic message with a hint of pictogram via the small dots in the O’s, creating a subtle pair of eyes.” Photo taken by Jason Bequette207 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - look208

Exnersvej Link

Exnersvej [ large preview209 ]
“My street sign.” Created by Achille Marotta from Denmark.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - exnersvej210

Bump Link

Bump [ large preview211 ]
“Sometime a little bump on the road can save you.” Designed by Md. Zabir Hasan from Bangladesh.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - bump212

Play with size Link

Play with size [ large preview213 ]
“Design Center in Copenhagen, brilliantly played with sizing.” Photo taken by Pitipat Srichairat from Thailand.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - play-with-size214

Choosing the right way Link

Choosing the right way [ large preview215 ]
“First photo of a short story. You have to choose your way to the divinity.” Licensed: Creative Commons Attribution. Designed by Ester Liquori216 from Italy.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - choosing-the-right-way217

Bike parking sign Link

Bike parking sign [ large preview218 ]
“A bike parking sign in the city of Heraklion, watch for the city’s sign up and left.” Licensed: Royalty Free. Designed by Miljkovic Milos219 from Greece.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - bike-parking-sign220

Cryptic writings Link

Cryptic writings [ large preview221 ]
“Letters in a parking garace in Helsinki. Not very informative.” Created by Erkki Punttila from Finland.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - cryptic-writings222

No parking Link

No parking [ large preview223 ]
“Hand painted sign.” Designed by Travers Smyth224 from UK.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - no-parking225

Which Way Link

Which Way [ large preview226 ]
“The traffic light tree (London) here could repesent the confusion we face in our lives deciding which way to go.” Designed by Hazem Lashin from UK.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - which-way227

Corner in Primary Link

Corner in Primary [ large preview228 ]
“A highway billboard in New Mexico getting a fresh coat of primary colors.” Licensed: Copyright. Designed by Gavin Todes229 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - corner-in-primary230

Don’t go right Link

Don’t go right [ large preview231 ]
“Signs on a freeway in Lima Peru.” Photo taken by Rodrigo Apolaya232 from Peru.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - dont-go-right233

Tandem signage Link

Tandem signage [ large preview234 ]
“Strange tandem signage in Spain.” Photo taken by Jonas Ginter235 from Germany.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - tandem-signage236

Ballyvaughan Link

Ballyvaughan [ large preview ]
“Ballyvaughan, Ireland.” Created by Mary Lemcke237 from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - ballyvaughan

Ecuador Sign, Ecuador Link

Ecuador Sign, Ecuador [ large preview238 ]
“This photo shows both the coordinates of the location, as well as the actual line passing below the sign to mark the equator, or “The Middle of the World” as they call it in Ecuador.” Photo taken by Tessa K. Marmion from USA.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - ecuador-sign-ecuador239

Mount Maido’s direction Link

Mount Maido’s direction [ large preview240 ]
“Mount Maïdo’s handwriting direction on a rock.” Created by Cédric Albrecht241 from France.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - mount-maidos-direction242

Berlin Street Signs Link

Berlin Street Signs [ large preview243 ]
“Street signs in Berlin-Kreuzberg, with the characteristic German ‘eszett’ and several ‘tz’ ligatures.” License: Created by Florian Hardwig244 from Germany.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - berlin-street-signs245

Last Click Link

Good Morning Sunshine Link

Good Morning Sunshine [ large preview246 ]
“One of the morning sun shines in Glasgow at Tchai Ovna.” Photo taken by Shalmali Patkar247 from United Kingdom.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - good-morning-sunshine248

Alborzmountain Link

Alborzmountain [ large preview249 ]
“A part of Alborz Mountain with above 4100m height.” Licensed: © Payam Hamzei. Designed by Payam Hamzei250 from Iran.

Wayfinding and Typographic Signs - alborzmountain251

Thanks! Link

Thanks to all participants for taking the time to prepare and submit their photos for this contest and for contributing to the unique and diverse gallery presented here. We truly appreciate and respect your effort and time, folks. And please stay tuned for our next contest! Let us know what kind of contest you would like it to be; we look forward to your comments in this post!

Further Galleries Link

You may want to take a look at other contest galleries, too:


Footnotes Link

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Vitaly Friedman loves beautiful content and doesn’t like to give in easily. Vitaly is writer, speaker, author and editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine. He runs front-end/UX workshops, webinars and loves solving complex UX, front-end and performance problems in large companies. Get in touch.

  1. 1

    So many great shots! I am SO surprised by the photo you chose as the winner though; one of the most boring ones on the page IMO.

    • 2

      Vitaly Friedman

      September 16, 2010 7:16 am

      mike i, thank you for your opinion. We are always glad to receive constructive criticism. Could you please describe photos from this page that you think should win the contest? Can you please be more concrete?

      • 3

        Sure thing. It’s just that the photo you chose has no emotion to it. You said you wouldn’t notice it, which isn’t true. If it’s a double track than there are people standing on the other side of the tracks, that’s who this sign is faced at. So everybody sees it. It’s not ironic to put a sign saying not to jump on the tracks right next to the tracks, it wouldn’t do much good in the bathroom.

        As for better choices: polar bears, 1833 salamanca, end, no jumping be careful the safe.

        But my choice would be “Corner in Primary”. To me this is a perfect example of good photography. It’s stopping a moment in time that will never be seen again. The sign looked different yesterday, and it will look different tomorrow. And it’s cool how the sign can still be read even though it’s being worked on.

        Just my opinion :)

        • 4

          I must say I completely agree with Mike, I was so surprised (and disapointed) when I saw the winning picture. I guess you didn’t know that the sign was put there so that people standing on the other side could see it.
          My favorites : No jumping be careful the safe, Texturized wall and Which Way

          • 5

            First: Congratulations to Julian Salaun.

            I have to agree with the above. The sign is on the opposite side of a platform – so anyone standing on the actual platform can see it. Making your reasoning for the win … well … it was a free competition and great work looking through all those photos.

          • 6

            I too agree with mike…..

            And Voting system could be a better idea to select finalists…..
            just a suggestion….

  2. 7

    Um, not to be rude to another fellow artist, but this picture is just not that great. if he took in on the tracks, that would have been better (risk for a great shot counts for something, no?)…even the composition is wonky. The sign itself is neither unique nor otherwise captivating.

    Essentially, i’m wondering how this managed to win. It just doesn’t deserve it compared to the many, many better submissions. The judges must have been smoking that really good stuff :P

    • 8

      Vitaly Friedman

      September 16, 2010 7:16 am

      We are always glad to receive constructive criticism. The idea mattered more than the execution in this contest. Could you please describe photos that you think should win the contest? Can you please be more concrete?

  3. 9

    Congratulations to winner and to Smashingmagazine, really great job.
    I wish more creative contest like this one on SM.

  4. 11

    Some fantastic photos here, I should have got round to taking one too. Particularly love the Salt Lake City and Battery park sign.

    I can see why you chose the winner but I’m not all that convinced myself.

  5. 12

    Congrats to the winner! And thanks for this contest! Loads of really nice, funny etc etc pics. I wouldn’t like to choose one myself…

    I would like if I may… any chance to see participants to vote for their best photos?

    ps: there is no accounting for taste.

  6. 13

    Congratulations to Julian Salaun. Thanks to Smashing Magazine.
    How about a contest like this for every month ? :)
    How about readers can vote too ?

  7. 14

    Well done Smashing Magazine!
    Very great job!

  8. 15

    Wow what great submissions. Many congrats to Julian, really nice photo. and yes thank you Smashing Mag for a fun contest.


  9. 16

    huhu, I am not selected,
    but I am happy coz my photos wan’t that much good :)

  10. 17

    Congratulations, appreciate the idea, and hope seeing over here.

    I regard the opinion about the poorest choice that was made. I can find plenty of others photos which better fill the accuracy asked by the contest. I may understand your criteria because on some originality of the sign. Not being disrespectful to the winner, but I absolutely can find better ones following the typography concepts and also originality.

    Particularly, really like the “Bike parking sign”, for example.


  11. 18


    I love this website, and all its ressources, so thanks a lot for sharing your passion, and making us able to improve our skills.

    As I saw only one picture in the snow, I thought this could have been part of your selection.
    Maybe I’m wrong, mabybe it’s not worth the share, but anyway, take a look:

    Greetings from France,


  12. 21

    Congratulation Julian! Your picture is quite interesting indeed.

  13. 22

    Thanks for the contest and the great diversity, Vitaly. My favorites, in order:
    1. Mixed signals (funny on so many levels, but being a State Farm Insurance office sends it over the top)
    2. Rock and roll (commentary by the dog makes it)
    3. No jumping (I wonder what the fine is for jumping. Oh.)
    4. Caixa pictograms (Good signage, great juxtaposition)
    5. Don’t even THINK (so New York)

  14. 23

    Looking forward to see similar contest in the future.

  15. 24

    No words!!!
    Simply a complete world tour!
    Congratulations for the idea.

  16. 25

    Aah I’m glad you chose my picture for the showcase (polar bears), I knew there were some potential lovers of this one ! I didn’t win the SLR though, but that makes you all know the website I designed for the round the world cycling adventure we prepared during 2 years with friends :)

    Like many others, I’m a bit disappointed by the winner. But great submissions everyone ! Can’t wait to see other contests like that !

  17. 26

    Thanks for this Vitaly. Its lovely to see different signage and get ideas from all over the planet. Im sure it took alot of your time. Its much appreciated.

  18. 27

    Personally I love the winning entry! Beautiful signage can often be the most subtle of things; it’s those little warnings that always attract my interest. Way to go!

  19. 28

    Great collection! Really cool to see that Smashing Magazine has moved so many people all over the world in taking pictures of all kinds of signs!

    I like the No Jumping Sign, Polar Beers and the Falling Coconuts.

    I also think that the winning picture is not the best. However I do like the photo after all he risked his life to take the picture! :D

  20. 29

    What a fantastic competition! Well done to everyone involved. I’m sure it was very hard to narrow down a winner. Wish I was in time to submit some of my signage photos I just got in France.

  21. 30

    L’image choisie est vraiment une des plus moches. Merci

  22. 31

    A suggestion.
    Every eye forms its own beauty and it’s hard to say: this photo is the best and these are just good. Maybe you should think of putting out 10 best photos and let users of SM to choose the best. I’m sure every vote would have its own argument. It’s just my opinion.

    I think these contests are great, and I would participate in this one if the deadline wouldn’t be to soon:)

  23. 32

    The “unconventional perspective” of the winning picture makes it so that you can’t even read the sign! Every other picture shows the text.

  24. 34

    Very upset too,

    The winner photo is nothing special. That sign is from passengers for the other side, so not that ironical placement. Anyway, just my opinion.

    So many others shot deserved the winning price.

    And yes, I’m a bit jealous to not either be selected. I was refreshing this page so many time since one month !

    Long life to Smashing Magazine. You are making me improving everydays.

  25. 35

    Oh wow, those are some really cool signs dude. Good picks!


  26. 36

    I am amazed by the pure diversification and wonderfully creative imagery this contest generated. Hail Smashing Magazine!

  27. 37

    great contest but I don’t like the winner photo, I also love the idea of one contest every month, thank you Smashing!

  28. 38

    I cant remember the brief, but I would of thought the quality of photo would win not the just the idea. Concept, execution and something that really catches your eye would be all things I would look for in a winning picture.

    I mean congrats to the winner still…..but like the majority I disagree and find nearly all the other photos ahead of this.

    I didnt enter this one…but the next one I definitely will!

  29. 39

    thanks, i am featured :) congratulations to the winner and many thanks to smashing for this initiative!

  30. 40

    cool.. congr8s..

  31. 41

    Many congratulations Charvi for getting featured… great work smashing magazine for such an initiative

  32. 42

    Love seeing all these images from around the world.Thanks Smashing…

  33. 43

    Many thanks to SM for putting up my image and congrats to the winner.

  34. 44

    Wonderful… i have no words to tell LOL ;)

  35. 45

    I loved this series of road signs and various public information signals.
    I have taken pictures of a fewsuch signs which make me laugh too…

    One may wonder how the people how posted them didn’t see the fun in them? Or Did they???

  36. 46

    Congratulations to the winner…

  37. 47

    I really like the winning image, because of the unique position the sign is in, and the risk the photographer took to get onto the tracks and take the picture.
    I also like ‘No jumping be careful the safe’, showing the different ranges of the mountains emphasises the message on the sign board really well.

  38. 48

    Michel Bozgounov

    September 17, 2010 1:13 am

    What if this is not a double-track and the sign really can be seen from standing on the tracks only?? (I suppose the picture itself is taken from the platform, with the camera hand-held next to the sign. I am right?)

    Congrats to the winner — but let me also say that I liked most of the other submissions (featured here) as well! Some very good ones between them!

  39. 49

    Just to say that mister Julien Salaun don’t own the right to use a picture taken in the Paris Subway.
    The copyright is the property of RATP (Transports in Paris). I’m quite sure that he have not the permission to use it.

  40. 52

    I’m also a bit surprised with the winning picture, i think there are others that should deserve the prize the best, such as “No Jumping, Be Careful the Safe” (very nice to remember trekkers not to jump into the emptiness!!), the “Airport Security Check” (very funny sign, with the security guy with some type of mirror), the Moon one (just crazy in my opinion) or even the so-impressive “Which way” (is it really useful in real life?).
    I think that next time the internauts should have the opportunity to represent a part of the vote as well :)
    And yes, i also must say that the winning sign is very visible for those passengers waiting on the other side platform, so i don’t understand what makes the winning picture special… also it’s not well taken in terms of that it’s not possible to actually read it…
    I would like to know what are the criteria used in the contest, that would help to understand the final desicion :)
    Anyway, great iniciative for Smashing Magazine! :)

  41. 53

    Thank you for the hard work Vitaly !
    Congrats to the winner :) I like the fun bit of the picture :)
    But I have a preference for “Which Way”.
    And very glad to read nice comments about my picture : “No jumping be careful the safe”

  42. 54

    Congratulations to the winner! Thanks for recognising mine among showcase of other Interesting.

  43. 57

    These are great! I’m actually really impressed with ParkInside, because (and this is my non-photographer showing, I’m sure) it was taken with an iPhone. I wouldn’t have guessed.

  44. 58

    “its almost ironic placement”

    Assuming you mean the sign’s ironic placement, there’s nothing ironic about it. It’s telling you “don’t climb down here, because if you do you’ll die.” Where do you expect them to place such a sign?

  45. 59

    Keep Posting, Thumbs Up Mate !

  46. 60

    Congratulations to the winner, and it’s cool to have been a part of this with so many other signage photos from around the world. Thanks!

  47. 61

    Some great examples of type here. I love this sort of thing. If I had seen this I would have submitted some of the many photos I have myself.

    When I was in Havana I found some fantastic examples of type like this. I hope you won’t mind me adding this link as I think it fits perfectly with the examples above. I hope others agree.

    Thanks for a great website and another great post.

  48. 62

    Congrats to the winners and all the others who managed to get on this page.

  49. 63

    Subinkrishna Gopi

    September 20, 2010 1:08 am

    Congratulations to the winner! Good work smashing magazine :)

  50. 64

    sorry for the winner, but I’m also very surprised by the choice.

    and like some people have said… the placement is not ironical at all because it’s perfectly visible from the other platform.

    I prefer the mixed signals

    • 65

      I agree, after leaving a while in Paris and using a lot the ”metropolitain”, every random users know that is visible from the opposite platform !

      All pictures are nice anyway, well done !

  51. 66

    Congratulation to the winners…why not have one topic every 15 days for photography contest…SM?

  52. 67

    Yeah !!! I’m from paris too , so glad its the winner nice shot and congrat to all people who participated !!!

  53. 68

    Don’t you people understand that the sign is there so that the people on the other side of the track can read it? Is this a winner picture? I think its lame and completely stupid, no offense to the photographer, it could be that he or she never saw a subway, just like the jury.

  54. 69

    I have to say that I think the winner is the sign for “Beware, polar bears!” It’s really emotionally evocative and goes beyond capturing just an interesting/clever sign. Great job!

  55. 70

    In the winning image, the sign is meant to be viewed by people on the opposing platform. Signs like it appear all over European underground rail networks. They’re as common as mud.

  56. 71

    Awesome Collection Dude ! Keep it up Greatest Post…

  57. 72

    I know that Contest is over, but week ago I came back from Barcelona and I found this wonderful sign ;)

  58. 73

    This page doens’t seem to work, lead to error page:

  59. 75

    As a photographer, I am shocked by the winning entry.

    …don’t ask me to be concrete with my opinion. You repeated that 333 times I see.


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