Monday, March 10, 2014

"It's Up to You, New York" - Vote Early, Vote Often!

After a brief delay in the proceedings, the two potential NYCFC crests have been unveiled and the vote is on!

I'll have updates as we go along - but go vote now!

Here's the official release:
Vote Now: It's up to you, New York.

10 March 2014 14:27
Posted byJanine Padilla

New York City FC announced today that it wants its fans to choose the Club’s official team badge as the Club counts down to its inaugural season which kicks off in approximately one year – March 2015.

Starting today and ending on Thursday March 13th, fans will have the opportunity to vote on their preferred badge from two options, created by renowned designer Rafael Esquer and chosen by the Club. The badge that receives the most votes will become the bedrock of the Team’s identity and will be formally unveiled in New York City on March 20th.

Urban artifacts like subway tokens and architectural details found throughout the city serve as inspiration for both designs. The two badges feature the typeface Gotham, a wholly American font inspired by the City’s signage. Born out of an in-depth study of building lettering in New York City, the monogram reflects the rich graphic language that is so much a signature of the five boroughs. The colors navy blue, white and orange are drawn from the New York City flag. The two badge options above.

The shield is the result of extensive research into global soccer. Seeking to give the Club a unique and distinctive character within MLS, we examined badges from every professional soccer team in the world. In the end, we found the answer right here at home. This design features the historic shield of the official Seal of New York City – a mark that signifies the pioneering spirit of the early settlers, which in the modern era, has fueled America’s undoubted move onto the world soccer stage.

The circular badge is inspired by the old New York City Subway Token, created by the Transit Authority in 1953 and used for 50 years as the standard fare for a ride. The last version of the token had a cut out pentagon in the center representing the five boroughs, similar to what appears on either side of the monogram, to reinforce the Club’s connection to the entire city. The circle is also a symbol of unity, wholeness and infinity, and is often associated with potential and the number one. This is a modern and confident badge that clearly speaks to New York City’s status as a leading city.

Esquer is best known for his iconic “Made in NY” logo, representing New York City’s efforts to support local film and television production. His work also includes the newest logo for the Houston Rockets and national team uniforms for the 2002 Winter Olympics.

“This badge is to be the symbol of our Club, a symbol of our players and we hope in time, a symbol of this City. That is why we decided to give our fans the power to take part in such a fundamental way,” said Claudio Reyna, Sporting Director of New York City FC. “Thanks to the work of Rafael Esquer we feel that we have two designs that truly represent our Club and our City, and we’re excited to see which badge they choose.”

“Our supporters will always have a voice in our Club at New York City FC,” said Tim Pernetti, Chief Business Officer of New York City FC. “We are truly excited about this opportunity to partner with them on this decision and we are counting on all New Yorkers and fans beyond the city to get involved, cast a vote and make New York City FC history.”

To vote on the preferred final badge, fans can simply log on to Voting will remain open through Thursday, March 13th.

Fans also still have the option of submitting their own badge designs to become a pixel of the official New York City FC team badge mosaic to be revealed later this spring. The final Club badge mosaic will allow fans to zoom in to find their own design permanently displayed within the shield. A physical manifestation of the mosaic will also be on display in the Club’s permanent facilities. Fans can design and submit their badges through New York City FC’s badge generation tool, known as the “badge configurator” at
The club also released these images, promoting some of the design philosophy behind each badge:

The "Timeless Monogram", as they're calling it, will have to stand on its own. I don't like the multicolored version; the all-white is so much more striking and balanced.

I am already a huge fan of the Gotham typeface, a bold sans-serif design designed in 2000 for GQ magazine. It was inspired by the mid-century signage the designer found while walking around New York, and gained national prominence in 2008 when the Obama campaign used it as their signature face. How appropriate that it should now be employed by the first MLS club to play in New York City, and it's only a shame that the club will be bound by the league's standard numbers and letters for the back of their shirts.

And we also have details for the shapes.

The addition of orange caused a significant splash among the faithful. Here the club describes the reason behind its inclusion:

Nice callback to the flag of New York City. Although the current flag of the Netherlands is red, white and blue, the flag at the time of New Amsterdam was orange. Indeed, orange remained the national color of the Netherlands and features prominently today with their national football team.

I'm not actually a huge fan of the orange, because it muddies up an excellent color scheme in the double-blues. I'm very much hoping that NYCFC eventually treats orange the way the Yankees treat red; a featured element in the logo and some merchandise, but almost (if not totally) absent from the uniform itself. As the club will presumably use gold, if the shield design is chosen.

Finally, club also updated its website, in a new sky blue color scheme:

I am glad that, either way, we're getting an interlocking monogram.

I am a huge fan of Rafael Esquer's "Made in NY" logo. Since 2005, it has been used to promote film and television production, the digital and startup industry and theatrical production created within the city. Esquer's design is simple yet effective, works at any size from internet icon to billboard, and stands out in all contexts. Simple and iconic, my own personal hallmarks of good design. I've seen it everywhere from film credits to tshirts. It's fitting that NYCFC, with its emphasis on the five boroughs, would choose its designer for their crest.

Each of these two possible badges are (of necessity?) more complicated than the "Made in NY" mark, but still carry the same strong shapes. I'd like to see Esquer's "NYC" monogram used on its own, without the circle, as a secondary logo.

But now it's time to cast our votes. The club is going all-out in promoting the crest vote around town, with electronic billboards at subway stations:

Twitter: @HeyHayward

Twitter: @BrianHester7

Twitter: @NYCFC

When it comes down to my vote, there's no question. I much prefer the distinctive shape from the city's seal, but I can't stand the multicolored monogram. For that reason alone, I have to go with the circle.

And after having voted, we see this screen:

Now it's your turn. Go make your voice heard.

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