36 Days of India Street Lettering

36 Days of India Street Lettering

For the 2018 edition of 36 Days of Type, I tried to shine a spotlight on the ingenious letter designs of local sign-makers in India, by drawing letters and numerals based on signs I have seen in the wild. I drew inspiration from signs in Udaipur (Rajasthan), Panjim and Mapusa (Goa), Mumbai (Maharashtra), Bangalore (Karnataka), Chennai (Tamil Nadu) and New Delhi — just a drop in the ocean when it comes to all the amazing street lettering in India. Some signs were hand-painted, others were neon or LED, further more were engraved, or made of metal or wood or concrete, or in one case, even ceramic tiles.


On a recent trip to Chennai, I was pleasantly surprised to see neon signs everywhere. The lowercase “t” caught my attention because the way the letter was constructed was completely unexpected.


Panjim’s Mivea Stores sports one of my favourite wood signs. I am especially fond of the flambuoyant “B.”


This “6” was found on an engraved headstone in New Delhi’s Nicholson Cemetery. Though the year on the headstone has become obscured thanks to new construction, I would guess that this headstone would be at least around a century old.