[Case Study] A Vancouver Japanese Restaurant Menu Lightbox Display Redesigned

Vancouver restaurant menu designed

Today we wanted to show our process of designing menu digital displays for a restaurant in Vancouver. Before starting any project, it is important to align our vision visually with our clients, to make sure we are on the same page. However, it is often the case that the design language used by a designer cannot be understood by the owner, or the clients would frequently misunderstands the terms used by the designer. This below our process and hopefully there is a take away for you.


1. Exploration & Stylescapes

After the initial consultation and briefing, we would create a variety of stylescapes to let the restaurant manager see our directions. In the sheet, the client will be able to get a overall feel of the design direction, the possibilities for the posters, and the layouts for the digital display. In this example, we are showing 2 styles our of a total of 3.

In these styles, we will clearly present the colour palettes to be used, the fonts, photos directions, layouts, and a feel of the brand. The branding aspect should also be considered, such as brand messaging. If any light bulbs pop up during the creative process, it would be a good idea to include it too!



menu design stylescape


2. Design Mockups

The three styles are different from each other – we have white, black and orange (not shown here), but we don’t create all three mockups. The client would have to pick one, but they can mix and match styles. The reason why we have all 3 is because our client requested orange. We didn’t think it would look good, so we have two other variation of black and white to let them pick. As it turns out, the client picked the dark colour scheme overall.

restaurant menu design mockups


3. Preinstallation and Color Testing

After the design is finished, we will mock the design on to the interior of the restaurant with photoshop. It doesn’t have to be a clear view. We used multiple photos to showcase, but this one represents the brand the most.



Vancouver restaurant menu designed


menu display designer vancouver


Client requested a brighter background and other minor detail changes, so here we go. Here are the 5 panel final look:


gyudonya 2017 display light-01 gyudonya 2017 display light-02 gyudonya 2017 display light-03 gyudonya 2017 display light-04 gyudonya 2017 display light-05


Now we can move on to printing and testing colors.

Because of the difference in material, the colour would look different on screen, paper, and plastic. In this case, we are printing it on plastic, which will be installed on to a restaurant display lightbox. The finish is a bit glossy, and is expansive to print.

For this reason, we will print multiple passes on paper to correct the colors as much as we can, to make sure the colour is okay, before we proceed with installation.

4. Installation

The final design is printed on a translucent film, and installation is super easy. If you know how to install a picture frame, you know how to put these in. Here is the final look installed:

Gyudonya Lightbox menu display installed