Interpretation is about communicating, inspiring and engaging with people.
Good interpretation can help enhance visitor experiences, leading to greater appreciation and better understanding. It aims to provoke thought and discussion, relates to the audience, and reveals what is special about a person, place or object. Ideally, the audience should walk away thinking “Ah, I never knew that. Now I understand”.
Interpretation is a multidisciplinary process involving planning and research, design, photography and illustration, and creative copyrighting.
I can provide the following interpretation services:
- Interpretation planning and strategy development
Planning is the bedrock of good interpretation. It is a vital tool to ensure a strategic approach is taken to the provision and management of interpretation.
- Graphic design
Including trail leaflets, guide books, interpretation panels.
The use of clear, interesting and stimulating images forms the corner stone of many design projects.
- Creative copywriting
Telling compelling, engaging stories, which relate to the experiences of the audience, is the key to good interpretation.
- Maps and illustrations
- Project management
Contact me for more information about interpretation.
Panels can be produced on a range of different materials, such as GRP, polycarbonate, or high-impact acrylic. GRP has long been the most popular material for outdoor panels. It is extremely tough, weather-resistant and most manufacturers offer a 5 year warranty against fading in sunlight. Cheaper (although less durable) alternatives, such as polycarbonate, are available for sites where vandalism is less of a concern.
Panels can be mounted on existing structures, such as fences or walls, or in a wide variety of timber or steel frames.
Contact me for more information about designing and producing interpretation panels.
More information about interpretation
There are many useful online resources available for interpretation projects, from interpretive planning guides, to writing and production. For more information follow the links below:
- Association for Heritage Interpretation
The Association for Heritage Interpretation is a key forum for anyone interested in interpretation. Website features details of suppliers, events and resources.
- Scottish National Heritage
Some excellent advice and guidance on interpretive planning, writing effective interpretation, producing panels, etc.
- Interpret Wales / Dehongli Cymru
Online back-catalogue of ‘Interpret Wales’ magazine (PDF), news and events.
- Interpret Scotland
Online back-catalogue of ‘Interpret Scotland’ magazine (PDF).
- European Association for Heritage Interpretation
International network of individuals and organisations with an interest in interpretation.
- James Carter
James is a freelance interpretation consultant. His website features an excellent selection of downloadable articles on interpretation.
I am an Associate Member of the Association for Heritage Interpretation.