Start Here October '22

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80 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 2 2 W ayfinding is an integral method of guiding people from one area to another in an unfamiliar place. Definition – e basic art of getting people from point A to point B. e dictionary defines it as the process or activity of ascertaining one's position and planning and following a route. You can look at wayfinding as the visual language of moving people through space. Directions to guide yourself through a successful system By JD Hamilton James Dean Hamilton has been writing for NBM since 1995. After a decade sabbatical from writing, he is back in the saddle. With over 30 years of experience, he has vast experience in everything signage and marketing, and workflow management. WAYFINDING INTRODUCTION TO History – Wayfinding is as old as signage and has its roots intri- cately tied to it. It dates back to when most people could not read, and shops like shoe cobblers would hang a large shoe on their building, and blacksmiths would hang a carved anvil, so people knew how to find them. Ironically, wayfinding as a discipline of signage only began to evolve as a standalone discipline starting in the 1950s, and its importance has quickly been rising since. PRINCIPLES TO SUCCESSFUL WAYFINDING • Create an identity at each location: is is the tie-in with signage. Your final destination needs to be easily identified. • Use landmarks to provide orientation cues: is can either be a physical reference, a sign at a location, or another part of the wayfinding system that keeps travelers moving in the right direction. Zoos are a fun example of creative wayfinding. Often, they will have several different exhibit areas. Wayfinding can direct, identify, and expand the experience for the traveler. (All images courtesy JD Hamilton)

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