Doug Lansky in his blog - Signspotting, has a hilarious collection of strange photos of signs taken by travelers all over the world.
Many moons ago, I was a professional signwriter so it doesn't come as a surprise that 'Signspotting' has a natural appeal to a nerd like myself, who constantly observes signs while out and about. Although, the postings this blog has to offer aren't so much an appreciation of the art, craft and amazing design that inhabits the world of signs but more a look at the mistakes, bad translations, hilarious juxtapositions and semiotic failures that people make. Anyway, all geekery aside, this really is an amusing site and I'm sure it will have mass appeal to anyone who is tickled by the random, bizarre and often ridiculous signs on offer that have been spotted all over the world.
I could easily list so many but just to wet your appetite, here are a couple of statements from postings on the blog that particularly tickled me: 'BJ near urinal not allowed. BJ near toilet is ok. 'Please sign in and have a seat' (sign found on a public restroom door).
'Signspotting is a very simple site to use and navigate. As one would expect from a blog, the new postings appear in chronological order on the homepage, which in this case comes under the heading of 'New Signs'; they can be filtered by 'Today', 'Last Week' or 'Last Month'. Each posting has a 'Facebook Like' button so that one can share their joy in a flash. The straightforward navigation also includes searchable sections such as 'Categories', ',Most Popular' and 'Special'. There's a great addition of a 'World Map' that allows one to see at a glance where in the world people have found their weird and wacky signs. The 'Store' section is also worthy of a mention as it gives the user the opportunity to link directly to various product based sites that are selling a selection of books, cards, posters and various other signspotting related items.
In general, the layout and colour palette used here work but unfortunately I would say that there are various elements of the site that do let it down. I don't particularly like the condensed font used for in the main navigation bar; it looks awkward and slightly hard to read. The image details found underneath each 'sign' image sit uncomfortably and generally there seems to be far to much white space. Fair enough, it can be tricky to get a space to work well when it has to accommodate such a myriad of different titles and descriptions etc but at the same time, I'm sure a few tweaks would make them a lot more pleasing to the eye.
There is a very cool illustration towards the foot of the page so it's a great shame that this style and theme haven't been used throughout the whole site, it would have had so much more aesthetic appeal.
As I previously pointed out, I feel the design and layout of this site could be addressed but don't let that put you off as there really is some unintentional comedy gold lurking all over this site. To be fair, not everything I perused on there is funny but the ones that made me laugh out loud, more than compensate for the poor ones. And as with anything, everyone has their own individual sense of humor so I'm sure there will be postings I find weak that others will find hilarious; all the more reason to check out this great little blog and discover the wonder of sign spotting for yourself.