The Colorful History of Flags
Many believe that the flag is one of the oldest forms of cultural identity and individuality. They have been used for thousands of years and have continued into modern times; their functionality having changed little. A flag will be flown at a football game as a display of state and national pride.
Pennants and banners often have a similar function to flags. Such items can be seen on the football field as well as on the battlefield. Their overall purpose is to rally a certain group of people (or even an entire country) around a sense of identity and solidarity. It is perhaps for this reason that many businesses and corporations have similarly incorporated these visual devices into their branding and publicity campaigns.
So, some of the main purposes of a flag, banner or pennant are:
- Recognition of a certain group of people or culture.
- A signal of triumph over an enemy.
- A rallying cry in times of battle.
- An advertising and publicity strategy.
Considerations when Designing Custom Flags
While the flag can often times be seen as a visual representation of a nation, many businesses may also choose to employ these items to help enhance their exposure. There are a few considerations to keep in mind when using a flag or pennant for such a purpose.
The primary concern is that any design should not be overly intricate. By their very nature, flags and banners are not visually static items. They need to be recognized from afar and their designs must be simple and easily identifiable.
Also, the correct colour scheme needs to be used. The colours will often reflect the core values of what is being represented and may even have a certain lore behind them. For example, the American flag utilizes stars to represent each state while the Canadian flag employs the maple leaf to denote one of Canada's most defining characteristics. Even a pirate flag made the intentions of the crew altogether clear to any ships within sight.
Text should be kept to a minimum, if used at all. It is rare that an observer will be able to read what is written and instead, symbolism will provide a much better conveyance of an overall idea and mission statement.
There are a large number of companies that will design custom flags and the manufacturer should be chosen carefully. They should only use materials that are durable under a variety of weather conditions and colours that will not fade over time. Flags, pennants and banners will naturally incur a great deal of wear and tear and the company should be able to provide examples of their previous work that exhibit functionality and durability.
To summarize, some major considerations that need to be addressed when designing a unique flag are:
- Simplicity in design.
- A graphical representation of core values and concepts.
- The minimal use of text.
- The quality of the material and the reputation of manufacturer.