Monday, May 16, 2011

New Flags for New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador

This will be another post in which I look at some flags which are on the right track, but which I feel need a little extra push to become good flags.  Today we'll be examining 3/4 of the Atlantic provinces of Canada, continuing my series of Great White North posts.

New Brunswick is first up, a beautiful flag that went a step too far:

Objectively, this is not a great flag.  It was way to much detail on both the ship and the lion.  However, for some reason I can't fully explain (even to myself), I'm a sucker for nautical imagery on flags, particularly when it hearkens back to the Age of Sail.  With that in mind, there is little I can do but turn my wrath on the lion.

I understand the British connection, I even like that it appears to be sticking it's tongue out at me, but it doesn't need all those line to help the viewer understand it is a furry creature.  I suppose it could be simplified, but that isn't for me:

I have done away with the lion altogether, ending up with a flag that vaguely recalls a horizontal tri-color.  Though the ship could be simplified, I like the fact that this flag uses black, white, and the primary colors to depict a complex image.  Not very simple, but highly recognizable, and it continues the apparent mission I have been on in my Canadian posts to dispense with any provincial ties to the United Kingdom.

Nova Scotia's flag is only ok.  It has a shield like several other provencial flags, but that is filled by an ornate lion and nothing else.  There is no attempt to sqeeze 46 other symbols of the province into that small field and even the background blue cross on white is clean and distinct:

As with the previous flag, the lion is the thing that needs to go.  As Nova Scotia means New Scotland in English (translated from Latin, though originally Scotia was a name Romans had for Ireland), the blue cross presents a great flag opportunity squandered by the crest and so my only change will be a bit of removal:

Clean, simple, distinctive colors, historic connection, this flag has it all in an elegant little package.  This flag is simple a reversal of the Scottish flag, and while it is almost identical to the ensign of the Russian Navy (the ratio and thickness of the cross being the only real differences), I don't think that should prevent the use of this flag.  I mean, how often would the two ever be displayed in the same place?

Last for this week is the flag of Newfoundland and Labrador:

Adopted in 1980, it is one of Canada's newer flags, appropriate since Newfoundland and Labrador are the newest province.  It also has the nickname "The Golden Shaft," which caused me to stop for a second.  I suppose it could just be Wikipedia messing with me, but it fits the design.  This flag could easily go without any changes, as it seems to represent the British connection, their natiucal heritage, and a clean, clear design all at the same time.  My only suggestion came after looking at an unofficial flag of Labrador, the mainland component of this province:

 This flag is also very nice, and thus I will steal from it to improve the flag for the entire province:

I dunno, I just really liked that little spruce twig, and I think the touch of green looks good here.  I tried adding two, with the second being a mirror image of the first on the other side of the yellow stripe, but it reminded me too much of antlers.


  1. you should do the Australian states next. What a mess of colonial imagery they are

  2. New Brunswick: yes, very good. But I think there's too much red at the top. The red band should be no thicker than the sea. On average the top and bottom bands of the "tricolor" should be the same width. I agree the ship is well drawn.

    Nova Scotia: if anything you've made it a bit too simple.

    Newfoundland (why ruin a good name with a second part; Labrador is no Providence Plantations): No no no. Horrible flag made worse with a pointless defacement. They should just adopt the Pink White and Green, which is arguably as good as the flag of Quebec.

  3. I think they should leave the flags alone. Except the NF & Lab .. I combined the two to make an awesome flag. you can find it on my cover page on Facebook.

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