Updated: Interview With Bryan McCormick of Vegas Vernacular

Galaxy Building

Update: 4/22/2013: While I was attending the 2013 International Sign Association’s Sign Expo in Las Vegas a couple weeks ago, I had the privilege of sitting down with Bryan over lunch to discuss the latest happenings with the Vegas Vernacular. It had been about 6 months since our first interview and I wanted to get an update on the organization, what they are currently working on and what’s next……oh and to get my print of the Desert Moon Motel I ordered!

Although I loved meeting Bryan at the art exhibit back in September of 2012, this time around was even better. We went to an incredible little place to eat, called EAT, in old downtown and just talked signage. It was the first time I had ever just walked around that area and it really gave me an appreciation for what Bryan and his team are trying to document. Once you get away from the Strip, you realize that a whole other world exists. Just walking and driving down Freemont Street – away from the tourist traps – you quickly realize what Vegas was truly about. It’s not about the massive Casinos. It’s about the hundreds of family owned motels and businesses that lined the streets. Each one with a unique story. Each one on the verge of disappearing.

Although they have accumulated around 50,000 images, there is still more to be done. Much of their current projects are based on immediate necessity. Not only are the smaller motels and building being closed down, they are being torn down. Bryan said that just knowing what properties are next is difficult. Then trying to get in to photograph them can be an even bigger challenge.

But, aside from the constant need to document the signs, Bryan and his team are right in the middle of creating a platform to catalog and display the images. The best part of the platform, they want to make it available to other organizations, in other cities, to allow them to accomplish the same goal as the Vegas Vernacular. A national platform for all to use as inspiration and education. They have also spent some time trying to track down the artists, like “King” Richard Harris, who actually created the hand painted signage. Their personal stories are as much a part of the dialogue as the signs they created!

For the most part, things continue at breakneck speed for the Vegas Vernacular and the ever changing landscape of Las Vegas sure keeps Bryan on his toes. Let’s just hope he is quick enough to document it before it’s gone! (more…)

Announcing the Signs.com Gives Back Program

Signs.com Gives Back

Starting a business is hard. Starting a business in a poverty-stricken country is harder. At Signs.com, we are blessed to be located in a country that fosters startup ambitions, but for some entrepreneurs in the African country of Kenya, just selling enough product to put food on their family’s tables is a daily struggle.

Today, we are happy to announce the start of the Signs.com Gives Back program (read the full press release here). The Gives Back program was created to help the budding business owners in Kenya market and grow their small businesses with a custom designed sign.

Our COO, Nelson James says, “Giving back is one of the core values of our company. We would love to give away thousands of signs through the Gives Back program and, hopefully, those signs will play a big role in helping business owners succeed and improve their lives.”

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Happy New Year – Now Make Some Resolutions

Happy New Year

Everyone has their New Year’s resolutions and most of them revolve around weight, some form of exercise or discontinuing a behavior detrimental to their health. Admittedly, my resolutions may include some of these too but all too often they are neglected by January 31st. This year I decided to go in a different direction. So here are my 2013 New Year’s resolutions and how you can apply them to your life or business.

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10 Trends for 2013

10 Trends for 2013

If you are like me, you are probably wondering what happened to 2012. The year flew by…even though there were times during endless political bickering, strange natural events, and Notre Dame’s return to national football prominence that it felt like it would never end! Either way, 2012 has been a year of ups and downs. In the business world, we have seen economic ebbs and flows that would have made Noah sick. But the question now is what to expect in 2013 (this whole falling off the fiscal cliff thing aside).

To answer this question, we scoured the best business websites, blogs and publications to bring you the Signs.com 10 Trends for 2013. (more…)

Let’s Talk About Your Holiday Decorations…

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… but can we talk about your holiday decorations? Every year, I look forward to the weekend after Thanksgiving with both excitement and trepidation. The neighbors rummage through their crawlspaces, basements, garages and storage sheds and drag out all the Christmas bins. They hang a wreath on the door and lights from the eves. They install the Christmas tree in the front window. By mid-Saturday morning, the yards up and down the street are looking fabulous. (more…)

Harper Grey: What We Are Thankful For

Harper Grey: What We Are Thankful For

 

My job at Signs.com involves writing a weekly column for the blog that provides readers with an insider’s view of my shopping escapades, eating-out adventures and experiences with customer service, both good and bad. I love to shop (that’s why I landed this super-sweet gig). I love to eat out. I love to indulge in services—everywhere from the nail salon to the carwash. I’m a consumer—it’s one of my best skills, according to my husband. Even though I am very talented at spending money (and then writing about it here), life’s not ALL about the stuff. Sometimes it’s about something more. (more…)

10 Ways to Make This Thanksgiving the Best Ever

Best Thanksgiving Ever

 

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. I love gathering with family members and catching up with relatives I don’t get to see very often. I love the warm colors of the decorations and the delicious smells emanating from the kitchen. And the food? Well of course there’s the fabulous food. Any holiday that features mashed potatoes is a holiday I can really get behind. But Thanksgiving can be kind of overwhelming when you’re the host. There’s so much to do and there’s a little bit of stress involved. But it doesn’t have to be that way… here are 10 ways to make this Thanksgiving the best ever. (more…)

How to Avoid Mutiny This Holiday Weekend

How To Avoid Mutiny This Holiday Weekend

 

Ever heard of the Mutiny on the Bounty? Sailors on the HS Bounty were tired of swabbing the decks and working long hours on a boring ship. So they mutinied, burned the ship and set up housekeeping in nearby Tahiti.

We’re not talking here about mutiny on the high seas— we’re talking about mutinous store employees. And the stakes are much higher. Black Friday weekend is a billion dollar business for the retail industry; store owners eagerly await the hordes of shoppers and large sales numbers that will bring the year’s profits higher. But while owners love these four biggest shopping days of the year, employees dread Black Friday weekend. (more…)