Mapping

David Park

I am a Senior Environmental Graphic Designer at Gresham, Smith and Partners, and have enjoyed a diverse career of working on programs for mixed-use, corporate, hospitality, retail and exhibit projects across the United States, and in China and Qatar.

My strengths lie in logical wayfinding, signage design that is congruent with its architectural or landscape environment, and design detailing.

David Park, Gresham, Smith and Partners
Gresham Smith
Nashville

KNOWHERE: Finding Ways to Teach Wayfinding

Samantha Perkins
Miami University (Ohio)

ABSTRACT
Breadcrumbs. Wayfinding, an amazing tool, deals with providing navigational “breadcrumbs” to travelers, helping them find their way between locations. Speaking the language of space, information, shape, and form, wayfinding addresses the communication of information within the realms of graphic design, architecture and interior design. But sometimes problems in clear communication arise, especially when the behavioral aspects of human navigation are overlooked. Luckily, we can address these issues early... Assuming we rethink the current wayfinding education model, and teach beyond the book.

By considering issues of navigation behavior, we can establish a wayfinding education model that seeks to help explain the how and the why behind navigation, regardless of the ultimate where. But how do we teach behavior and context in the static environment of a standard classroom? KNOWHERE, an immersive education model designed to teach wayfinding in a more hands-on manner, uses graphic design to establish educational events that communicate ideas of design elements in an immersive context and environment. Through the use of exhibit design and mobile studio equipment, the KNOWHERE model pulls students out of their chairs and immerses them in the world of wayfinding in ways that encourage exploration and creative analysis.

From Signs to Minds: Wayfinding Design and Mental Maps

Michaela Skiles

ABSTRACT
When following directional signs through a new area, how much do people actually learn about the environment around them? How could you design directional signs to help people learn more? This study examines how the design of directional signs influences spatial learning, by presenting information in different spatial perspectives.

Three sign types were evaluated: Separate (directional arrows, with roads and towns on different signs), Combined (simple arrow diagrams of the intersection, with roads and towns on one sign), and Cartographic (a highly simplified map). Participants viewed a sequence of signs as if driving through a fictional environment, making turn choices according to assigned goals, and then completed a mapping task. After a second sign viewing, this time without turn decisions, participants repeated the mapping task.

For the first mapping task, participants who viewed the Cartographic signs produced more accurate maps than those viewing the Separate or Combined signs. These results suggest that guide signs with simple maps can help people incidentally learn about the spatial configuration of the environment. There was no significant difference between groups for the second mapping task, which suggests that when people are aware that they will be tested, sign type does not affect how much they can learn.

This study not only has implications for the design of directional signs, but is also an example of linking research in spatial cognition with wayfinding as a design discipline. Carried out as an undergraduate thesis, this study is evidence of an effective interdisciplinary approach to design education.

Jim Harding

Jim Harding leads Gresham, Smith and Partners, an award-winning Environmental Graphic Design Group based in Nashville, Tennesee. Since 1986, his career at GS&P's includes a diverse range of signage and wayfinding design experience is unique in the breadth of industries and project types it covers, including corporate and urban design, healthcare, land planning and aviation clients.

Headshot of Designer Jim Harding, Gresham, Smith and Partners
Gresham Smith
Nashville, Tennessee

Insights From The National Mall Wayfinding Designer: Wayne Hunt

Wayne Hunt Recently conducted a tour of the National Mall for the SEGD Experience and Exhibition Workshop. He discussed his design process and gave insights into problems encountered in the design of the Mall captured in this blog post by Rachel Downey.

Greg Rose

Design with purpose, vision, and heart. Greg Rose's background spans several spheres of visual communication: corporate identity, advertising, information design, interaction design, exhibitions, architectural graphics, and wayfinding. The experiential and physical nature of graphics for the built environment has especially incited his curiosity and passion.

Since 2009, Greg Rose Design has served clients in healthcare, education, tourism, retail, insurance, professional services, entrepreneurship, and community development with a focus on quality and value.

Greg Rose Design LLC
Pittsburgh

Kris Helmick

Kris Helmick serves on the 2017-2021 SEGD Boards as the Chapter Chair Liaison, and also as Co-chair for the SEGD Los Angeles Chapter. He is also the Associate Vice President of Environmental Graphics at CallisonRTKL

Kris has more than 10 years of experience working on signage, wayfinding and exhibit design projects.

Kris Helmick
Hunt Design
Los Angeles

What is Mapping?

Mapping is a key issue in environmental and experiential graphic design, since the discipline’s goal of “connecting people to place” often requires getting people from Point A to Point B.

Despite the advent of GPS and other digital navigational tools, mapping will always be important. One of the primary goals of any wayfinding system is to provide orientation that helps users create their own mental maps of the terrain.

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