menu

Completely Redesigned State Flags Envision A More Unified USA [Pics]

Completely Redesigned State Flags Envision A More Unified USA [Pics]
culture

Bresslergroup designer gives all 50 flags a redesign with simple colors and graphics.

Sara Boboltz
  • 25 october 2013

Lined up all together, the U.S. state flags are a ragtag bunch. Many seem to have followed the same design concept, sticking an emblem chock-full of symbolism onto a field of blue. But then we have Maryland, whose flag sports the shocking color palette of an ambulance wrapped in police tape, and Mississippi, which borrows heavily from its Confederacy days. Ohio’s isn’t even a quadrangle. Oregon apparently couldn’t decide, and so it has two — one starring a beaver silhouetted majestically against a blue backdrop.

Designer Ed Mitchell of Bresslergroup noticed this lack of unity among the banners of a set of territories whose best quality is, at least in theory, their unity. And so he set about redesigning all 50 — plus Washington, D.C. — using the principles outlined in 1969 by the International Federation of Vexillogical Associations, which states that a good flag:

  1. Must be so simple a child can draw it from memory
  2. Must use meaningful symbolism
  3. Must use only two to three colors
  4. Must no include text or seals
  5. Must be distinctive or related, not duplicative

Mitchell stripped down the color palette to red, white, and blue (What else?) and one set of symbols: the star, the stripe, the eagle, the olive branch, the shield, and Lady Liberty. He also switched up the proportions, going with a 1 by 1.5 ratio that’s close to Golden but standard enough to produce easily. Placed on a flagpole, the new shape also gives the national flag — with its 1 by 1.9 ratio — visual seniority. Which seems appropriate.

But despite their eclectic appearances, each flag does come with its own history. Is it really worth chucking that aside in the name of cohesion? Are state flags really contributing to national strife? It could be argued that each one is as unique as the region it represents, which, in turn, is what makes the whole nation special. Mitchell, however, thinks that we’re “off balance.” He argues that the simple freedom to reconsider such historic symbols should be celebrated:

I believe design can be used as a tool to challenge our current beliefs — in this case, to make people think about what we represent, what image we want to project, and how it will look when we’re all working together.

Take a look at some of his designs below, and see if you can guess which states they belong to.

Bresslergroup

 Images via Bresslergroup.

 

culture
Trending

Brand Engagement At The Gates Of The World's Largest Open-Air Gallery

Culture
Asia Yesterday

Safe Drivers Rewarded In Japan With Free Coffee

Driving Barista is a new app that encourages Japanese motorists to put their phones down as they drive

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Michael Kors Has Designed Their Own Instant Camera

In a partnership with Fuji, the limited edition Instax Mini 70 comes in an exclusive metallic gold color

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Building Tomorrow

See All
Health Yesterday

Manage Your Emotional Health Through Your Phone

Pharmaceutical company Pfizer has created a new iOS app meant to help patients track mental progress and set goals

Food Yesterday

Delete Food Pics Off Of Instagram To Feed The Hungry

Land O'Lakes and Feeding America are donating meals for every picture of a meal taken off of the social platform

Related Expert

Ross Martin

Broadcast Media

Design & Architecture Yesterday

This Shape-Shifting Pod Could Be The Future Of The Cubicle

MIT and Google have designed a new form of work enclosure meant to offer privacy in open-office layouts

Advertising Yesterday

Billboard Spies On People As They Walk By

To promote the movie "Snowden," the advertisement broadcasts information on passersby without their knowledge

Fashion Yesterday

Anti-Pollution Scarf Helps Cyclists Ride Through Cities

An innovative system filters pollutants and its accompanying app monitors quality of the air

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Energy Expert: How American Consumers Are Taking Control Of Their Power Use

Jennifer Tuohy, green tech expert at The Home Depot, discusses green home technologies and developments for renewable technologies in US homes

PSFK Labs Yesterday

New Mentorship Ecosystems Benefit All Levels Of An Organization

PSFK’s Future of Work report explores how technology is being leveraged to support cross-team communication

Automotive Yesterday

Volvo’s Self-Driving Trucks Will Soon Be Put To Work In An Underground Mine

The fully-automated vehicles are part of a development project to help improve safety for workers

Work Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: How Will Companies Staff The Workplace Of The Future?

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX examine the ways that a people-first workplace might disrupt the job hiring process

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Mischievous Drone Will Drop Paint-Filled Balloons On Targets Of Your Choosing

A German photography team developed the flying device to accurately deliver a payload wherever needed

Retail Yesterday

Snapchat Reveals A Striking Pair Of Video-Recording Sunglasses

Spectacles make memories from your perspective and transfer them to the app

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

Financial Services Yesterday

This Peer-To-Peer Insurance Company Is Powered By Bots

Lemonade is a new product designed to lighten the paperwork and provide instant, helpful service when needed

Design Yesterday

Concept Artists And Scientists Form Partnership To Visualize The Future

The collaboration hopes to liberate ideas and innovations trapped in notebooks

Automotive Yesterday

Uber Could Be Bringing Vertical Takeoff Transport To Your City

The ridesharing app is looking into the development of nimble aircraft for urban environments

No search results found.