It is hard to believe that it was almost ten years ago I witnessed a CNC router in action for the very first time. I was fascinated and simply had to have one! Although I had been in the creative end of the three dimensional sign business for most of my life I didn't really know what I would do with one of these machines - but I just knew it could do fantastic stuff.

Along with the CNC router I discovered the wonderful material called Precision Board and the glues, primers and other companion products they offer. Since then we have gone through many tons of the material using it in most signs and projects we tackle. This journal will chronicle our many adventures both past, present and future. I'll talk from the perspective of someone who pushes these products to the creative limit on a daily basis. I'll be adding to the stories two or three times each week. -dan

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Sign Invitational Challenge 2017 - Part one

With Christmas fast approaching and some quiet days scheduled between Christmas and New Years it was time to work up my ideas for the next Sign Invitational challenge. It is my usual habit to work on personal creative projects in this period.

The design parameters for the competition are similar to last year although there are a few changes. The build envelope is still 24" x 24" x 72" tall. Movement and special effects are allowed but must be triggered by the viewers. The theme is 'Sign Magic'.

That left a lot of opportunity to be creative. As I thought about my piece this year many inspirations came to mind.

I love trains and have wanted to build a dimensional piece for some time. I decided to have a sign painter working on a bill board with the train (and trestle) bursting off the canvas beside him, showing the magic of a good illustration. The base of the display will be chiseled out as defined by the shape of the landscape. We will also cut some mineshaft into the rock work to add some interest on the plain cut step bottom portion.

As always I have a few surprises in store and they will be revealed as I get into the build.  Here's the concept art which will serve as a basis for the construct...