We all have been confronted by the awful events in Charleston, South Carolina recently. The racism, the murders, and the spirit of forgiveness in that courageous church and, oh yes, that damned confederate flag.

Finally, there seems to be some movement in lessening the use and public display of that 1860s battle flag. Major retailers have committed to removing products that carry its image and even the Governor of South Carolina is requesting a change in the state constitution in order to lower it from the state capital grounds.

Thinking of flags and their meaning, I’m reminded that it’s nearly the Fourth of July and that means the proliferation of the American Flag and all that it stands for. That makes me think of all the ways the Stars and Stripes has been interpreted to express the values the flag represents.

Below are three examples of how I, or with the help of some students, have interpreted our national flag for various projects.

The-Best-Man-24x36

This image is for a run of “The Best Man”, a Gore Vidal drama produced by the Summit Playhouse in Summit, NJ. Although the story is not a very attractive view of American politics, it is still an American story about ideals and integrity.

Unlock the Block Edward Walter, Kyu Chang Shin, Davina Chatkeon, Blue Davis, Maria Rueda

The symbol above is for the New York State campaign to register the formerly incarcerated to vote. The campaign was called “Unlock the Block” and combines the prison cell with the idea of a simplified American flag, representing that all citizens share in the same basic rights.

Let-Justice-Roll_flat (2)

This image was created for a musical celebration of Black History Month titled “Let Justice Roll.” The elements of our flag, stars, a blue field and red and white stripes combined in a unique way – communicate that this is the land of the free.

I invite you to comment by adding your favorite images of the American flag, whether borrowed, found or created. The process is simple. Complete the form below with your name, email and title of the piece and any other relevant credits – we won’t sell or otherwise misuse your information. Upload the image and hit send. Submit them by Thursday, July 2, at noon EST and we’ll post them to the web site strategystudio.com/4thofjuly on Friday July 3 for the enjoyment of all!!

Happy Fourth!

Strategy Studio is a brand design firm developing and implementing identity systems, interactive experiences and visual communications, that tell the stories of new products and established brands–from Fortune 500 companies to non-profit organizations.

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