Why design matters for presidential hopefuls

Since this is pre-election year I thought I’d dip my feet in the political waters deep enough to assess the presidential hopefuls’ logos for 2012. This is done with no secret political agendas, but rather with the belief that he who does not value design may not be worth your vote. I’ve listed them in order of best to worst. Keep in mind I judge them not to mock, but to emphasize the importance of design in a presidential race. Good design is a key factor in building trust, and without trust in your political candidate- well what do you have?

Obama.

An obvious choice for next year’s election, not only because he is the current president, but because of his snazzy logo. Bold, clean type with the memorable “rising sun O of hope”.

Bachmann.

Another h2 logo. Bachmann chose to go with a classic serif with a bit of patriotic fun substituting the crossbar on the H with a waving flag. A slight twist on the same old political logos we’ve seen year in and year out.

Gingrich.

Although very typical for a political logo – it does its job by presenting the name of the candidate clearly without a lot of fanfare.

Person.

Somewhat lacking personality, this is another acceptable logo – using a modern style. The important items are communicated and legible.

Romney.

Great design!… if the logo wasn’t white. (Case in point- I had to add the black background just to get it to show up here.) While it may work to put this logo on the website of a heavy metal band (which I’m not sure he wants to associate himself with) a (partially) white logo – like white pants- is simply not practical for everyday use.

Perry.

While struggling behind I’d still include this logo in the acceptable – good category. A circular gradient may not have been the best choice, but the type is bold and readable.

Karger.

It was hard to tell if this was Karger’s logo or just some type on his website. I like the font, I just wish it more thought was put into kerning (letter spacing) and the design team probably needs to take another stab at the american flag motif on the left.

Huntsman.

While this logo isn’t “bad” I question it. When I see this logo I think construction company. Perhaps it’s the simplicity of the H, or the sans-serif font, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Huntsman had to field questions about the whereabouts of his foreman.

Roemer.

I liked where the designer was going on this logo- I just don’t like where he ended up. Red, blue and gray does not make for a great logo color scheme.

Paul.

Ron, what’s that protuberance coming from the A your name? It’s additionally confusing because of the great eagle behind you.

Santorum.

I give this one props for originality. However, points must be deducted for the serif font and the awkwardness of the eagle.

Wrights.

Dallas. Is this man from Dallas? He must be right? Otherwise he must be the star of the show – or a sheriff.

McCotter.

Drop shadow. Need I say more?

Martin.

White drop shadow. See above comment.

jimmy m

McMillan.

This is getting beyond the real of questionable taste and I have to wonder- did he even try?

Alexander.

No, I don’t believe Alexander does care. At least not judging by his “logo”.

Well, that about does it for the candidates. There were many more I could have chosen and so many more things I could have said, but I hope this will suffice to prove my point. For those of you considering running for a political office in the future, may this blog give you pause, but also hope and courage to do the right thing – and hire an expert.

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With a passion for communicating through design and an OCD level of pixel-perfection, Hannah continually seeks to refine the poetry of her code.
September 16th, 2011 // // , ,
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