Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Fly your Flag High

A recent article in Economic Times caught my attention. It was about Adbusters new Flag which replaced the Stars in the US flag with logos of American brands.

Logos and Flags have certain similarities.
  • A logo is a symbol which represents a company, product, service
  • A Flag represents a country, a state or a service(to the nation)
A logo is not just an image or a symbol; it is the embodiment of the organization. A flag is a symbol of a nation and its people (though there are several types of flags). The uniqueness of a logo is often necessary to avoid confusion in the marketplace among general public, affiliates etc. Similarly, flag designs exhibit a number of regularities, arising from a variety of practical concerns, historical circumstances, and cultural prescriptions that have shaped and continue to shape their evolution.

Here are few similarities that designers should follow:

Basic principles of a Logo:
Should be unique
Should be simple
Should be uniform (colors, shape, form, consistency, clarity)
Should be distinctive

Basic principles of a Flag:
Keep it simple:
So simple that even a child can draw it from memory
Use Meaningful Symbolism: The flag’s images, colors or patterns should relate to what it symbolizes
Use 2-3 Basic colors: Use colors which contrast well and come from the standard color set
No Lettering or Seals: Never use writing of any kind
Be Distinctive: Avoid duplication but use similarities to show connection

Vexillology is the scholarly study of Flags, and considered a branch of Semiotics. A person who studies flags is a Vexillologist and the person who designs one is called a Vexillographer

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