Environmental Graphic Design: Architecture meets Graphics

by . April 8th, 2014

Have you encountered the term Environmental Graphic Design? Does it mean using nature or environment in creating designs? If you’re someone who’ve been to a site within a built environment (e.g. museum, zoo, retail store, hospital, corporation), then probably you have stumbled upon EGD.

Environmental Graphic Design (EGD) is defined as a graphic communication system for a given site within a built environment. What do we mean by site? A site refers to a single building to a network of multiples buildings within one spatial location. A site can either be permanent or temporary.

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In other words, Environmental Graphic Design is the graphic information displayed and designed specifically for a built environment. EGD is where architecture meets graphic design that’s why it is sometimes called “architectural graphics”.

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What exactly is the purpose of Environmental Graphic Design?


These days, we have more complex and modern spaces so way finding signs are important to help people navigate the area.


Some structures tend to have continuous additions, renovations and restorations. There is a need to route people and make them reach their destination without asking questions.


Environmental Graphic Design is a lot of help to people moreover for PWDs.


We don’t want tourists to be lost and there is a need for multilingual signage or the use of symbols to cater them.

Here are the kinds of EGD:

Way finding Signs

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Directional signs

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Navigational signs

Information Panels:

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Title Boards

Place makers:

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There are three major elements of EGD: information, graphics, and hardware (material).



The written text or how the message is worded. It also includes location correspondence and relationship of signs.


Includes typography, symbols and colors used. It is the layout of the content and application of graphics to actual signs. Graphics also exhibit the visual identity of a particular site.


Refers to the shapes and sizes of the signs. How the signed is installed/mounted, the materials, coating, and lighting used is also a part of the hardware element.

To wrap this one up, we can define Environmental Graphic Design as a solution to spatial problems. We are living in large cities and we need these way finding systems to route us in our everyday lives.

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