Sunday, February 20, 2011

Getting Started

Welcome to Fix the Flags, a blog where I try to fix the flags of states, provinces, and countries around the world, making them more unique, specific, and interesting.  As anyone who has tried to memorize the flags of the world can tell you, there are a lot of copycats out there (please, British territories, you must have noticed the similarities!).  If you haven't before, I would encourage you to try and play Sporcle's US state flags quiz.  Take away the 15 or so that really stand out (Maryland, California, Texas, etc.) and the ones with the name of the state in big letters and most would be hard pressed to figure out identity of the others. 

To that end, I'll be starting with the flags of the various states, commonwealths, and territories of the USA.  I may be wrong, but when your state's flag is a circle on blue (2/5 of them use this template!) it seems hard to argue that it's special.

Before getting started, I must admit that this idea was not entirely my own.  I need to acknowledge "Your State Flag Stinks" for getting me to even think about this.  In that blog, some state flags are praised, but most are skewered and witty/sarcastic replacements are offered (great example: the new New Jersey flag symbolizes the Jersey Turnpike with thin green edges to represent the "garden" part of that state).  I hope to do much the same thing, but from a different perspective, looking at the histories of the flags and what they represent and doing my best to make them cleaner, simpler, and above all, more recognizable.  I also want to thank the ongoing Flag Friday project over at Vexillophilia, where the flags of the various nations of the world are being critiqued.  I hope to head abroad eventually, but for now I'll stick with the USA (and maybe Canada).

I'll also preface this whole endeavor by saying that a flag can be intensely important to people as a symbol of their nation, community, even themselves.  Any criticism or suggestions I make on this blog are nothing more than my own personal opinions on the aesthetic nature of flags in and of themselves, not the ideas, nations, ambitions, etc. that they may represent.

Comments are always welcome and any improvements on the designs I offer here would be great.  Just as most current designs need improvement, I'm sure mine will as well.

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