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The Power of Professional Graphics

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What are the advantages of having Professional Graphics?

-They are actually cost effective

For the time you spend creating content, you are away from your job, and as we all know, time is money.

- Professionals have the experience

Professionals, in any field, are the best at what they do, becuase they do it every day.  While you might be able to do the job, the professional can get the job done faster and better.

- Customer impact

Most people are visual learners. When you have a visually impressive graphic, people will look at it. Professional graphics get results other graphics simply can’t compete with.

- Compare, and see the difference

While most people can make a basic graphic, if you want your sign to stand out, and be attractive, you will need professional looking graphics.

So how does one get professional graphics?

One way is to learn graphic design on your own.  This takes time, and don’t expect to be the next Picasso overnight.  Graphic art is a professional degree at most major colleges and universities. The amount of skill needed to create a graphic may seem simple, but it takes time, knowledge, and experience.

The fastest, easiest and, from a business standpoint, the most practical way is to hire a professional graphic artist.  This can be confusing, after all, graphic artist come from all different types of backgrounds.  Graphic artists are used in TV, print, outdoor, and web advertising.  While all graphic artists can create content, not all are experienced in creating content for outdoor advertising.  LED signs have a smaller pixel aspect ratio compared to print, and the amount of information you can put on a billboard is minimal compared to TV advertising.  Whatever you decide, be sure to provide the artist with your LED display’s pixel dimensions,as this is key to creating good content.

YESCO Media Services offers their expert services in outdoor advertising and digital media. When you choose Media Services, you get an entire graphic artist team with the experience and know-how to make your LED display shine. While you are not limited to just using our graphic artist team, if you choose to do the graphics on your own, or choose another professional, here are some important tips and industry standards used in outdoor advertising.

- Make your text as large and bold as possible.  LED signs are viewed from a distance, sometimes miles away.  If you put small text on the sign, no one will be able to read it.

- Render out all your work before sending it out to the sign.  For example, don’t send layered or vector files out to the sign.  Send a flattened jpeg or a rendered wmv.

- Build and save your project at the LED display ratio.  If the LED sign is long and narrow and you put a square or standard HD graphic on it, the image will be squashed.

- Unlike print, digital media have no specific DPI, so save space on the computer and use a low 72 dpi.  (DPI is a print media term meaning Dots Per Inch).

- Unless you are a major sports team or a very large casino, you do not have an HD TV.  Most outdoor advertising is considered lower than SD, or smaller than that old tube television. The closest resemblance is web design.  The ads on a website are smaller than a full screen advertisement on TV or those you read in a magazine.

For questions or to learn more about subscribing to Media Services, contact us at mediaservices@yesco.com or 1-866-989-3726.

Color Design Tips

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Your LED sign is made up of several little lights.  The LED lights are separated into three colors. Red, Blue, and Green.  By changing the brightness on these lights your sign can go from black to white.  Changing the brightness on just one color or only two your sign can become any color in the rainbow.  Each set of three LED lights is called a Pixel.  This is why you build messages at your signs pixel width and height so that the pixels line up.

When using color on your LED sign it is important, maybe even more so than in print, to use contrasting colors.  because LED signs are dealing with brightness a yellow background with white text would be very hard to read, if at all.  So some tips on keeping your sign noticed and readable are:
1) Use contrasting colors
2) Have a contrasting background with text (ex: blue background with yellow text.)
3) Stay away from monochromatic color schemes (ex: yellow, orange, and red)
4) When you need to use the same colors, try putting a border, or shadow around text.
5) When putting text on an image with multiple colors, try putting a solid color box in between the image and your text.

Aria’s New Colossus on the Strip

Categories:News & Stuff

Working with Layered Files

The difference between working with a layered file and a non-layered file is completion. A non-layered file is usually a completed file like a .jpg or .png. The advantage of having the uncompleted file is you can use layers, but what are layers? Layers are individual images or objects inside the editing project like a .psd. A layer can be a photograph or a text object.  Layers can be hidden, moved, cut, changed, and removed.  A layered file, like a .psd, is like a template that you can use over and over again.  The finished file, like a .jpg or png, is not meant to be edited, but instead viewed.  This does not mean you can’t edit .jpg’s but editing is limited and not as easy.  In this month’s article we will look into how layers work and how we can use them to create amazing content for advertising.

Let’s set the groundwork, layered files are made up of other file types, usually .jpg’s but also .png, .eps, and others.  Some file types are better than others for when you are creating a layered file.  For example, a .jpg is flat, and has a background.  A .png is flat, but has no background.  A .eps is a vector image which means you can make it as large as you want without loosing quality.  (note: There are two different types of images, pixel images and vector images. Learn more about Vector images here.) When you use a photo editing software like Corel’s Paintshop Pro or Adobe’s PhotoShop, you can create a new document and add these, and other files into a project document.  Each image you bring in creates a new layer.  When you use the software to add text, the text also creates a new layer.

Layers are like making a poster for school using paper cutouts from magazines and newspapers.  Each layer is a piece of paper that you can move around, cut, edit, and position in just the right place before setting it on the board.  You can have as many layers you want, and even copy layers for multiples.

Layers

When you are done with positioning layers, it’s time to glue them to the board. Instead of gluing these images to a poster board, the computer allows us to simple save this project as a flattened file, like a .jpg.  This creates a file we can use out at the sign, while saving the layered file as a .psd, we can save the template and use it later to create more images.

Pixels Demystified

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In an effort to help both our current and potential customers understand pixels, pitch, and sign resolution, this month’s article will compare these with objects familiar to the reader and found in everyday life.

Let’s start with basic definitions, beginning with pixels. Pixels are those tiny dots of color that make up the screen on your PC, smartphone and TV. On a computer monitor, pixels are so tiny and compact that you must have your nose almost touching the screen in order to see them individually. These dots of color change to create images, text, and video. An LED sign is also made up of these tiny points of changing light. On PCs and smartphones a pixel is often the width of a sharp pencil scratch. On an LED sign the pixel is often the size of a nickle or a dime.

Pitch is the physical distance between one pixel and another. On a PC or smartphone the distance is often less than the thickness of a human hair. On an LED sign since the pixels are much larger the distance between the pixels is also much larger. The distance between pixels on an LED is often about the thickness of your finger.

Example1

The reason why pixels and pitch are so much bigger on an LED when compared to a PC or smartphone is due to the distance a viewer is from the screen. Viewers of a PC or smartphone are usually within just a few feet. This closeness demands that the device be able to display high detail images and a lot of text in a relatively small amount of space. On LED signs, viewers are 10-100+ times farther away and so while the need to display images is still there, the desire and demand to be able to read large amounts of text just doesn’t exist. This distance also demands that messages for an LED sign are short, easy to read, attractive and memorable.

Resolution is the number of pixels that make up a screen’s width and height. 96×48, 112×72, 320×176 are all fairly typical LED sign resolutions. An SDTV was 720×480, and an HDTV is 1920×1080. Due to the different size in pixels and pitch of an LED sign you can see that even though an LED sign can be much bigger than a big screen TV–the LED sign’s resolution will be much less. To further illustrate this if you were to take a TV and and LED sign and put them side by side a 32” HDTV would be about the same physical size as a 48×32 LED sign with a 16mm pitch. To show the corollary, an SDTV–720 pixels wide and 480 tall–would fit on a cabinet top in the living room of your house. An LED sign with the same number of pixels would be nearly as wide and tall as a two story house. Think of it as reverse magnification.

Take the following pictures as an example. Each push pin is  like a pixel and when you look at the image up close, you don’t really see the image, you just pixels.  But when you step back and look at the whole picture, the pixels form together, creating the image.  This is the same principle with LED signs were the pixels are large up close, but when you reach that optimal viewing distance, the image looks complete.

mg-3204-copy mg-2684-copymg-3305-copymg-2834-copy 

(Images from fastcodesign.com)

Understanding how these three concepts interact is crucial when determining what size of LED sign to purchase and what type of advertising to use. If you have further questions regarding pixels, pitch, or resolution please feel free to contact us at mediaservices@yesco.com.

Welcome to the NEW Webstore

YESCO Media Services is pleased to announce the completion of our new WEBSTORE.  If you have been with YESCO for awhile, you will remember the old webstore and the hundreds of graphics for LED signs and HDTV displays.  We had over 100 generic animation, more then 200 images, and alot of 3D models.  Many of the items on the old site were for instant download, but not all.  The Google Wallet checkout system was a fast, secure, and easy way of making online purchases.  With your help, we have learned what works, and we have listened to your suggestions.  In the new webstore, we have brought our large library of digital media, added some new content, and implemented some amazing features.

Feature #1: The Checkout Cart

Google Wallet worked great, but it limited our digital download options to only at a time.  This made it time consuming to purchase alot of items.  In an effort to shorten the time shopping and speed up the process of getting content to your sign, we have switched over to a PayPal checkout.  This does not require an account (though you can set one up, or use an existing PayPal account) and it gives us a shopping cart.  Now you can add multiple items to your cart and then checkout.

Feature #2: Instant Download

This was a huge undertaking, but we are excited to make it happen.  With advancements in the Internet, and the new PayPal checkout, you can instant download any of our digital media and 3D Models.  After you purchase the item, you will see a list with links of your purchase.  Simply right click on the link and save the file anywhere on your computer.  No more waiting for an email to download.

Feature #3: Monthly Articles

Just like this article you reading right now, there will be additional articles every month explaining LED signs, creating content for LED signs, and more.  These will be free to read and help people understand the outdoor advertising world.  Each article will take a in-depth look into how LED signs work and the best practices regarding content for LED signs.  We will talk about graphic design, and help you learn the basics of being an artist.  The articles will also explain LED sign operation and scheduling, and hopefully clarify some of the features that can be confusing.

Feature #4: A New Look

The  new webstore also comes with a bold new look.  Tablet and Smart phone friendly the new look uses a more icon rich navigation.

Media Request Button1 Media Request: This icon will take you to the Media Request page were you can request a custom message from on of our professional graphic artists.

Images Button1 Still Images: This icon refers to our library of still media.  Here you will find generic messages and background images for LED signs and HDTV’s.

Animation Button1 Animations: This icon is for generic and background animations for LED signs and HDTV’s. Choose and instantly download from more then a hundred animated messages.

3D Models Button1 3D Models: For Corel’s MotionStudio 3D software.  There are 3D text templates, sports models, and more ranging from complex to simple.

We hope you enjoy the new webstore and have fun browsing the hundreds of items.  As always we would love to get your input and suggestions.  Please email mediaservices@yesco.com with any ideas or questions.

 

Thankyou,

YESCO Media Services

 

 

 

 

Getting your text to stand out

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There are three ways to say something on an LED sign.  You can use an image, for every image is worth a thousand words.  You could use an animation to show a product’s details.  Then there is always plain text.  It is important to know and understand how text works with LED signs to make your text stand out.  In this article we will explore a couple of ways you can get your text to be bold, and grab people’s attention.

The first thing you want to do when putting text on an LED sign is, think about what you are going to say.  If you have a sale on a car, for example, you probably want to put the price, the brand, and maybe the name of the car.  That is at least three lines of text. Now think about your sign.  Is it a long sign that really only has room for two lines of text?  If so, maybe you can still have all the text you need, but use animated text to get it all on the sign.  For example, let’s put the brand of the car on top, then the model and price can animate in below.

Not all LED signs are allowed to do animations, so let’s look at doing a still image.  If we only have room for two lines of text, maybe we can use an image for the car brand.  We can put a image of the car, or the logo up next to the text, and just have the brand or name and price.  Keeping the amount of text on the LED sign to a minimum is key to having an effective message that really stands out.

Another way to get text to stand out is to have contrasting colors.  Black background with white text is your basic contrast, but you can also use colors to add interest to your message.  Use the primary colors to get a good, strong, contrast.  Colors like red and green.  Blue and yellow.  Purple and orange.  You can also use brightness and darkness to contrast your color.  Use a dark blue with your yellow text, or a dark blue on a tan background.  If you still need more contrast, try adding a border/stroke around the text.  If you have a photo editing program like Paintshop Pro, or Photoshop, you can add a drop shadow.

These are just a few of the ways you can easily add contrast to your text, helping it stand out. Follow the links below to get more ideas and help in using the software.

Border on 3D textCreating 3D text with a border effect.

Really Simple "New Animation"Animating text in Prismiview.

Taking the Blur off TextTaking the blur off text.

Big and tall: Aria lights up new 250-foot LED sign

Categories:News & Stuff

 

You can’t miss it.

It’s 250 feet tall, 65 feet wide and packed with 11 million pixels spread over 10,000 square feet of LED screen.

It’s Aria’s new marquee, and it’s the tallest on the Strip, according to MGM Resorts International officials.

Unveiled for testing last week, the towering sign straddles the overpass that stretches between Crystals and the Cosmopolitan. It plays electronic ads for the Aria, its shops and restaurants. Each runs 10 to 20 seconds long.

The marquee was built by the YESCO electric sign company.

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