24 Sep

The signs are going up thick n fast.



21 Sep

This project has involved many different contributors each with their own skills, from the communities who shared their ideas and visual concepts, to the preparation of the wall by plasterer Chris Brand, and the manufacture of the signs themselves by Bensons.

One vital skill brought to the process was the draughtsmanship of the designers. Illustrator Chris Rodenhurst (better known as Sketchybeast) and recent  LJMU design graduate Becky Jones worked their socks off rendering peoples’ visual ideas as vector road signs.

Besides the hardwork in drawing images in illustrator, the job entails a an aptitude for observation. Never underestimate the details to which a designer will work – their quest for perfection is obsessive at times. Is that line too thick? Is the nettle leaf “nettley” enough? How signy should this sign look? Do we want a moorhens footprint or just its foot?

But it is this details which brings the signs to life.  So a special thanks to Chris and Becky! You make the best nettles and the perfect Spaceman.

I saw the sign

18 Sep

Phil (production manager at Benson’s) holds up the title sign for the installation. this is in fact the only sign that wont be on the wall, as it will be installed further down the road in order to point people to the work.

Opening Saturday 25th!

18 Sep

Exhibition of Signs

8 Sep

You can see the final design and layout for Constellation Of Signs now at the LinacreOne Office, Linacre Road.

Download the Flyer

Constellation Exhibition

Comments from canoes

16 Aug
I got in touch with Terry, one of the courageous canoeists we met during our canal workshop. Terry and his friend Steve were canoeing from Liverpool to Hull to raise money for Help For Heroes. When we met them they were only 4 miles into their marathon. Here is a bit about how they got on, and their impression of the canal:
We made it back to Driffield on schedule. The whole 200 miles took 6 days and 9 hrs. We had to up our work rate enormously from when we saw you. That day we finished paddling at 8pm and were 10 miles short of our allotted distance. We found that the only way to make the time was to start at 7am and finish paddling at 10pm We were pretty tired by the end.

The best day was flying down the Humber with the wind on our backs…beautiful sunshine…the tide going our way…and no other deep river traffic to worry about. That night we finished under the humber bridge at about 7.30pm

Just for comparison…the yorkshire side of the Leeds/Liverpool was completely free of litter and it seemed to make a big difference to the amount of people using the water and towpaths. I think if the authorities could get the merseyside section cleaned up they would see a big increase in the amount of usage by the public.

Bearing in mind that the overwhelming majority of people in the world are decent human beings, then the more people that use these places, the safer they become – without the need for policing etc.

Wouldnt it be grand to see lots of people using the canal to get to work…running , cycling or even kayaking. If I worked in a city I would much rather cycle down a towpath than sit in  a vehicle for an hour. If you could get coffee and food along the way that would make it an even more attractive proposition.

On The Road

7 Aug

On Wednesday, Chris the Sketchybeast joined a coach expedition to Wales with locals from Bootle and Linacre. Like Cliff Richard in Summer Holiday, but drawing instead of singing, Chris led a number of activities including a sign quiz (try it yourself here), a memory sharing and signage design for the installation. Again, lots of signs prohibiting the throwing of rubbish in the canal, and also one about not throwing your cat in there. My favourite though has to be the warning sign that warns about the dangers of signs themselves!

Margaret Calvert

7 Aug

Margaret Calvert and Jock Kinneir designed the UK Road Signage System in the 1950’s. As a visual language, it is something that is so ubiquitous that we take it for granted. It is of course what we are drawing on in creating the Constalletion Of Signs installation. Here is Margaret Calvert appearing on Top Gear.

Under Pennington Road Bridge

7 Aug

A modern re-telling of The 3 Billy-goats Gruff, where we as Re-Dock play the troll, and the goats are played by canoeists, barges, bmx bikers and dog walkers. Actually its a video document of our workshop under the bridge by the site of the Constellation Of Signs installation.

Workshop #09 – #10 – Pennington Road Bridge – process

31 Jul

Today we took the workshop to the site itself. The grey morning weather forced us under the bridge but it turned out to be a great move as we met loads of people using the canal: 3 canoeists, a few runners, 6 barges, several lads on bikes, lots of families and a shedload of dog walkers.