Design, logos and American football on a Sunday
On Sunday 4 February 2018 the Super Bowl took place, for the 52nd time. The most important game of the National Football League (NFL) was held on this occasion in the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the game was played between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles.
In my family we are American football fans and the team we support is the New England Patriots. Besides admiring the game we are always aware of the changes in brands and logos, names and uniform design. As a graphic designer I watch the games and share with my two sons everything I observe in this respect and we constantly talk about it all, which make the games even more interesting.
We admire the Dallas Cowboys logo and feel sorry for the Cleveland Browns whose brand leaves much to be desired. We like the Seattle Seahawks uniforms and we can’t understand the motive for the change of colours proposed by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
A few weeks ago we had the opportunity to attend a game between the Oakland Raiders and the New England Patriots in the Aztec Stadium here in Mexico City. It was a great victory for our team on that occasion.
The following day, and continuing with the presence of the NFL in Mexico, we went to a street exhibition on Paseo de la Reforma, organized by a group called Locos por el Arte (mad about art). The exhibit consisted of 32 American oversized football helmets, representing each of the NFL teams. The helmets had been painted by different artists and the only requirement was to be inspired by the logo of the corresponding team. It was interesting for us as a family to guess which team each helmet belonged to. In some cases it was easy, in others it was much more difficult due to the artist’s interpretation which at times was a bit crazy. Either way, it was a very interesting experience.
When we got to the end of the exhibit my eldest son made an interesting comment. “Now I understand the difference between an artist and a graphic designer. Artists create pieces guided purely by their inspiration, creativity and desire to express themselves. Graphic designers do the same but are confined by rules and ordered ideas. I respect your profession; I think it’s harder than being an artist. If the helmets had been designed by graphic designers it would have been much easier to recognize the team to which it belongs”.
My son’s comment made me think about how we go about designing a logo or corporate identity and how important it is for us to respect the rules of the game. Our objective is for every identity we design to reach their maximum potential and achieve recognition and high value.
Our team didn’t take the Vince Lombardi Trophy this time, nevertheless there is always next season!