This paper reports on preliminary research that formulates an emergent theoretical framework through the consideration of graphic design research in conjunction with the concept of semiotic landscape in place. The purpose of this research is to extend our understanding of the current discursive modalities in typographic landscape/landscaping and semiotic landscape using the notion of graphic knowledge. It positions graphic design elements as possessing the semiotic potential to contribute to the interdisciplinary research of multimodal discourses about places. This research began with a review of the literature in relation to the development of linguistics, semiotics and, latterly, typographic landscaping. This development links graphic knowledge from social semiotics, providing the fundamental connection between semiotic landscape and graphic design. A new theoretical framework was established by combining urban graphic design and semiotic landscape, and a new theoretical hypothesis of ‘graphic landscaping’ is proposed to refer to the discursive ability of graphic design elements in social places.