Illustration Styles

What is “Visitability?”

Visitability is the ability of an institution to provide for the physical, emotional, and psychological needs and comforts of all of its visitors. It addresses the existence and quality of every physical visitor element including remote access, on-site personnel, services (rest rooms, store, food service), environmental spaces and shapes, visuals, and the map.

What is Wayfinding?

Part of “Visitability,” Wayfinding is the mental processes, environmental elements, and objects needed for people to orient themselves and navigate through an activity from start to finish. The goal of your wayfinding program should be to allow your visitors to create clear cognitive maps (below) of your entire real and cyber facility; feel -- and be – safe,comfortable, and smart; move around easily; and find what they need.

The most important element in wayfinding, a cognitive map is a practical understanding of a physical place that a person creates through a combination of background knowledge and experience of that place. It is built in a person’s memory through use of the senses, and does not necessarily resemble any type of conventionally produced map. Each person’s cognitive map is unique.

What are Green Signs?

There are hundreds of materials available to the modern signage manufacturer. Most permanent signs need to stay looking fresh and new for long periods of time; some under adverse climate conditions; some requiring strict design compliance with ADA regulations. As a result, many sign materials are made out of metal or tough, durable petroleum-based plastics, and both the materials and manufacturing processes tend to be highly toxic.

This environmental picture has been improving over the past several years. Substrates made of recycled materials such as paper, wood, bamboo, plastics, aluminum, and other materials are available as replacements for more toxic materials. Vegetable-based printing inks with non-toxic emissions are reaching ever higher levels of quality and permanence. LED, LCD, Plasma, and Fiberoptic devises have made electric signs more flexible and energy efficient.

Not all sign applications are candidates for “green” materials and practices, but many are, in whole or in part, and the list keeps growing.

Click HERE to see a table of common signage materials.


  • Comply with local, state, & federal regulations
  • Remove physical & cognitive barriers
  • Enhance visitability
  • Benefit visitors, staff, volunteers, & suppliers
  • Save staff time and money
  • Clarify & focus brand recognition
  • Improve “good neighbor” standing
  • Contribute to environmental efforts
  • Drive visitors’ word-of-mouth enthusiasm
  • Open new visitor niche markets 
  • Create new advertising opportunities
  • Help increase your bottom line