The True Power of Branding

While there are many annoying things about the millennial generation, the concept of the individual as a brand is one of the worst. Branding spans time and requires consistency – the very idea of an individual being a brand would mean a lack of personal growth and a complete adoption of rules that never change. A great brand needs something iconic, none of which any of these people are. The modern icon is a red hat.

Iconography is an incredible thing. It’s a language that transcends the limits of the everyday; distance, capacity, reason. Today being Easter is a good example: that cross will always bring to mind a reaction in someone, no matter what they believe.

The iconography of evil is also just as interesting. The swastika is the most prominent example; it’s a visual mark that represents many things but because of the Nazi brand, it now is forever marred in the despicable actions of Hitler’s Germany. Similarly, the Hitler mustache is rarely, if ever, worn by men. This is the effect of the Nazi brand.

Evil in America is represented foremost by the Confederate flag.1 And while I can’t imagine Donald Trump sitting around thinking, “I really need to give the racists in America an as-of-yet-unsoiled icon they don’t have to be ashamed to wear in public,” it’s certainly what he did. In the future the Make America Great Again red cap will have the same public stigma as the Stars and Bars.2

In every feasible way, the MAGA Red Hat is a New Icon. The people who wear it are representative of a train of thought that will, one way or another, decide the future of this country. The dangers of brand association are most apparent in times like this, and why control under a single idea (state or corporate, to be honest) is never a way to live.

  • Fuck states rights, southern values and hospitality as some excuse of ‘knowing a heritage.’ Every excuse I have ever heard for that flag makes me want to vomit. It’s the logo for racists and white nationalists in America and represents the unhinged evil that occurs when pride and capitalism show no mercy.
  • Hopefully. To be honest if there’s a civil war and the white nationalists get the bloodshed they want, it could end up being in the history books as the symbol of the Second Revolution.

April 16, 2017 at 9:00 am

Blog · Commentary


2017 Posters

First Exposures

Photograph by Ella Dean.

Tabloid-size posters promoting the 2017 First Exposures event, Looking Forward, Giving Back, featuring pieces by student photographers.
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2017 Save The Date

First Exposures

Initial communication. Photograph by Juliana Martinez.

2016 Collateral

First Exposures

Invitation, double-sided RSVP card, envelopes for First Exposures 2016 annual fundraiser

2016 Save The Date

First Exposures

Initial communication

One Year Without Alcohol

December 19, 2015 at 4:47 pm


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Torch Logo

Logo and knockout for league scheduling application, Torch

October 22, 2015 at 6:00 pm

Branding · Design

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2015 Invitation

First Exposures

2015 Collateral: Invitation, double-sided RSVP card, envelopes

Looking Forward, Giving Back Wordmark

2015 Save The Date

First Exposures

Initial communication

Personal Branding

Created a new mark to brand personal projects with; based on my signature

February 22, 2015 at 7:00 pm

Branding · Design

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Kill The Precedent Wordmark

The New Fiend Wordmark

Mark for The New Fiend

July 4, 2013 at 6:00 pm

Branding · Design

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Five Eight Logo

Logo and knockout for Five Eight, a San Francisco based web consultancy firm

October 1, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Branding · Design

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Churches in Chicago


August 28, 2011 at 4:18 pm


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