The very short lived campaign logo.

I was amazed to see the Obama camp produce such a notable design blunder when the Eagle’s crest logo came out. However, I was struck by the way the modifications to the Presidential seal were done. My favourite change was the replacement of the shield with the Obama logo, which was one of the more controversial design decisions (aside from the nomination of Sarah Palin, but more on that later) of the Presidential race. I say favourite design decisions because it blurs the line between the Obama logo and the Captain America shield in a manner that I don’t think was ever intended.

Before the circular shield.

Before the circular shield.

If you look closely at the presidential seal, the Obama logo replaces the shield that was borrowed for the original Captain America shield. The Obama logo becomes a fitting replacement when thinking of the Captain America badge shield and how it was replaced by the now standard circular design. In a way, the designers were updating the original iconography through the lens of how that one graphic element has been redefined through it’s adoption into the design of Captain America. I think a large part of the reason a lot of Americans reacted strongly to the Obama seal was because it graphically replaced The Office with a person.

However, to me the relationship to Captain America is more interesting than any possible overtones of emperorship because Obama’s own story is one of growth, achievement and willingness to charge into the fray. I find it really remarkable how the Obama campaign was able to generate a sense of excitement through graphic design and how people on a large scale were making their own graphic contributions. My newest favourite from the professional set comes from comic legend Alex Ross who captures something that I think most of us were

Super Barak

Super Barak

envisioning but didn’t have the capacity to embody like he does.

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