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Local sign maker makes international magazine cover
A local sign maker has made it onto the cover of an international sign magazine.
Paul Martin, who owns and operates Picadilly Signs with his wife, Kelsey, out of their garage in Fort Garry, is thrilled that his work will be featured on the cover of Sign Builder Illustrated — a how–to magazine targeted at sign professionals.
The article, which Martin said will be about his handmade signs, is scheduled to run in the September issue of the magazine.
"It’s excellent publicity for me. The magazines go to all of the major sign shops around the country, so it’s really big for us," he said.
Martin started Picadilly Signs a year-and-a-half ago as a side project. He received so many requests for work he ended up leaving his former job in December to operate the company full-time.
"I did one farm sign, and someone saw it and asked for one, and then it really took off," said Martin, noting he usually makes two signs per week. "I’m putting them out pretty fast. In sixth months I’ve done 32 signs."
Some of Martin’s customers come from as far as Penticton, B.C., Toronto, and Nevada. He does some advertising on his website, but said the signs really advertise themselves.
"My biggest thing right now is cottage signs, but I also do movie industry stuff — I’ll get requests for props. Slowly I can see the momentum (of the business) building," he said.
Martin said he receives most requests for his signs by email or through his website.
"Usually I get a request from a customer telling me what they want. I’ll send out a rough sketch to them and once they’ve approved it I print out a template, hand cut everything and then paint it," he said.
Martin said he uses high density urethane, or HDU, instead of wood because it provides more longevity in Manitoba’s harsh climate. The material is lightweight, mold-resistant, impervious to snow and ice, and won’t rot, crack or deteriorate.
"My signs are a little bit more expensive because they are handmade, but they will last longer than your traditional wood sign because of the material I use," he said.
Martin said he hopes making the cover of Sign Builder Illustrated will give his signs more exposure and help him attract more customers.
One of Martin’s current customers said his work speaks for itself.
"He does a phenomenal good job," said Jerry Roskam, who lives in Lac du Bonnet and recently had a sign made by Martin.
"We found him through friends, and our sign is gorgeous. We’re always getting comments on it from our neighbours and others who drive by. Every sign of his I’ve seen or heard about has been received wonderfully."
For more information visit picadillysigns.com or call Martin at 204-688-0720.
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(1 of 12 articles for this week)05/22/2013 1:00 AM 0
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