designing obama: scott thomas talks about obama design campaign

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Monday, October 26th, 2009

designing obama: scott thomas talks about obama design campaign

i don’t write a lot about design, but i have certainly written my fair share about politics. this is a post where those two things meet.

if you’ve kept up with my blog since at least this time last year, you know that i’m, um, to say the least, a supporter of president obama. one of the many layers of his campaign and subsequent victory that i focused on was the design campaign that was particularly pivotal. never in the history of presidential (or any other kind) elections has design played such a prominent role than it did with obama’s campaign. everyone knows obama’s logo. everyone knows the “obama blue” and everyone knows gotham font (even if they don’t know it’s called gotham…which i still regularly find myself obsessed with…).

no matter if how you feel or felt about obama and no matter if you voted for him or someone else, there’s no denying that his design campaign was historically unparalleled and visually stunning. while we had john mccain using optima (font) and that sorta weird murky blue and while hillary clinton’s website looked like something straight from bill gates’ desktop, obama utilized design concepts that created both instant nostalgia and hip “now-ness”. it communicated to both an older generation with its historical references and to the youngest generation with its apple-inspired freshness.

today, i came across a video of scott thomas speaking about the obama design campaign and the associated process from conception to execution. thomas was the design director for the campaign, so he was really involved in every step of the undertaking. in the video, he offers some interesting insights into the concepts and principles that most people never saw. it also—generally speaking—let’s people see what it’s like to thoughtfully design something, as opposed to slapping something together in 20 minutes in publisher. 🙂

so, take a look.

**one final note: i’ll be blogging (hopefully) in the next week or so about a related project i’m involved in that i couldn’t be any more excited about. it’s another design meets obama type of thing that was an unexpected surprise. more on that hopefully soon.**