If you open up the Gould Library website, you’ll find a search bar with a bunch of tabs above it. Each of these tabs will take you to one of the Libe’s online resources. These resources can be really useful to anyone looking to do research; the problem, though, is that a lot of our students–especially first-years–don’t know what any of them are supposed to do.

Way back in 2013, the Outreach team and the reference librarians started thinking about putting together a digital sign series about the library website tabs. They asked Alice, the first Publicity & Outreach Assistant, to take a stab at designing a sign for Bridge Squared, our catalogue search system. After several design iterations, Alice finally came up with a simple layout of a computer and a swath of color.

That’s where the project got handed to me. Alice went abroad for a term, and our supervisor asked me to pick up where she had left off. Everybody liked Alice’s design, but they were trying to figure out how to communicate the complexity of Bridge Squared in an understandable way. As the resident cartoonist among the Outreach workers, I of course decided to draw tiny people yelling things.

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It was a hit. It’s been cartoon silhouettes ever since.

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We have been slowly chipping away at this sign series for ages. Of all the projects I’ve worked on here at the Libe, this one has definitely taken the longest. In fact, this Spring term marks two full years spent working on this sign series. It’s not that there are too many signs to deal with–there are only six tabs to illustrate. What takes so much time is that each tab’s sign has to accurately represent what it does, and we’ve had a lot of back-and-forth between us and the relevant library departments. We think we’ve finally got it, though! All six signs have been running on the digital signs since last week. We hope they’ll prove useful to students and faculty alike!


Product: A six-sign series illustrating the Bridge tabs. Prompt from Outreach team: Make some informative signs that will help students understand the website. Student workers: AC and CS.