Posters that you intend to place outside face challenges that indoors posters don’t have to handle. This can include fading from the sun, water damage, tearing due to heavy winds, and more. You naturally want your posters to stay looking great for as long as possible. The trick is to get poster printing with the right kind of materials. You also need to set your poster up in the right way.
Weatherproof Poster Printing
Regular paper-based posters won’t stand up to the great outdoors for very long. Most professional printing services use alternative materials like PVC or polyester. Depending on the exact material and its thickness, the resulting poster ranges from be flexible (good for banners) to rigid (good for signs).
The next question is how your chosen design or message is printed. Regular print inks, which have a water or vegetable oil base, don’t work on PVC. These inks take too long to dry. They also need to soak into the surface they’re applied to. A smooth sheet of plastic is not absorbent. Regular inks will most likely sit on top of it and smear.
One popular alternative is UV drying ink. As you may be able to guess from the name, this ink dries when exposed to UV light. The process bonds the ink to the PVC surface, creating a solid material that is durable and highly weather resistant.
Another budget friendly weatherproof poster option is to encapsulate printed paper in a protective cover. Picture a process like when you laminate an important document. This could be a good choice for page-sized jobs or posters that will only stay up for a few days.
How to Set Up Posters Outdoors
When looking for a place to set out the poster, you’re probably concerned with visibility and any legal restrictions on the poster placement. However, you can also extend the life of your poster or banner by placing it in the right area. Sheltered spots could include:
- Under roof overhangs
- Recessed areas like closed windows
- In a plexiglass frame
- Flush against a wall
Avoid attaching your posters with thumb tacks or nails, if possible. In windy conditions, the poster may be ripped free and get damaged.
Try not to place the poster layered over other, paper fliers. These absorb water and disintegrate. When they peel away from the wall, your poster will too.
Finally, plastic posters placed in direct sunlight might grow brittle over time, depending on what material they’re printed with. Light can also glare off of the shiny surface and obscure the message. It may be more effective to place these posters at a different angle, creating better visibility.