NYC Pride is one of the most critical celebrations of the LGBTQIA+ community, taking place yearly each June since its inception in 1970 in response to The Stonewall Riots of 1969. In 1984, Heritage of Pride was founded as a nonprofit to take over the planning of NYC Pride and related events, and has done so ever since. (I encourage you to check out the NYC Pride timeline on their website to learn more about this history.)
But up until now, the branding surrounding NYC Pride hasn’t been cohesive or up to snuff.
Previously, NYC Pride branding has been disjointed and inconsistent, changing every year based on its annual theme. Yearly themes are all well and good, but when they rob a brand of equity, awareness, and core brand identifiers, then there’s a problem.
Heritage of Pride (who now functions under the “NYC Pride” monicker) realized this and went to global creative consultancy Lippincott to develop the brand identity they so desperately needed and deserved. Between the teams at Lippincott and NYC Pride, the collaborative effort set out to reposition the brand as an entity that uplifts, supports, and honors the LGBTQIA+ community year-round. They did so with a new visual identity and supporting system that is flexible, empowering, and true to New York City and NYC Pride’s roots.
At the heart of NYC Pride’s new look is its new logo, which was designed with evolution explicitly in mind. The LGBTQIA+ community is expanding rapidly, with more and more emerging identities proudly coming forward. As a brand built upon inclusivity, the new logo needed to make space for further growth in the years to come.
The static logo depicts a Pride flag—which is already the most widely identifiable emblem for the brand and community—with “NYC” surreptitiously incorporated into its stripes. When animated, the logo shimmers with a bevy of colors that currently represent intersex, asexual, trans, pansexual, bisexual, lesbian, nonbinary, gay, and polyamorous individuals. As time marches on, they can incorporate an unlimited amount of additional colors to represent more identities.
The rest of the brand system supports the sentiments behind the logo, allowing for flexibility in terms of growth as well as use across varying touchpoints and how it adapts to annual campaign themes.
The font families in the system are Monotype’s Knockout and Gotham, which are both designed by NYC-based Hoefler&Co. Knockout, inspired by 19th-century broadsides, is complemented by the friendliness of Gotham, which harkens to a style of sign lettering that is quintessentially New York.
Pride at large has broken into the mainstream over the last handful of years, with seemingly every company, corporation, and brand hauling out rainbow redesigns for the month of June. But for a perennial brand like NYC Pride, it’s refreshing to see a full-scale brand system in use that’s thoughtful and designed to endure.