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Los Angeles NFL Brands Discussion


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45 minutes ago, FinsUp1214 said:

 You see it in the story behind the LA horn, where there was this market-speak about sunshine and waves and SoCal life wrapped up in one single ram horn. It’s a ram horn, why are you trying to write a whole novel about California within a single ram horn? The Rams just flat out went too deep and stayed there, ultimately looking to me like an end result of a process that was over-saturated with excitement and attachment to far too many ideas and abstract inspiration.


This gets at my major problem with Nike. It seems like they’re addicted to getting some story or symbolism out of every single part of a design. Don’t get me wrong, coming up with stories and explanations is great. Hell, my absolute favorite part of the design process is researching and incorporating local flair/history into it. But it just comes across to me that Nike doesn’t understand that the story you’re telling doesn’t need to be demonstrated in every single element.

 

To me, the Ravens are a perfect example of telling a story right. They’re named after Edgar Allen Poe, their color scheme has a dark, gothic look that comes across in his stories and also mimics the iridescent colors of the actual bird. Then add some stripes on there and you’re done. I’m not even particularly a fan of the Ravens uniform itself, but it is absolutely spot on in what it wants to convey without completely going off the rails.

 

Even if someone is insistent on having demonstrable unique elements, it doesn’t need to be completely over the top. Cal Berkeley’s striping pattern is wholly unique and is an homage to one of their campus towers. It speaks a ton to the tradition and history of the school.

 

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16 minutes ago, ramsker said:


The LA Dodgers monogram is a perfect example of what I'm talking about.

 

It has no wave or sunset motifs, and yet when I see it, I instantly think of everything LA is about. 

 

If they felt like they needed to set a California Vibe, they should have continued with this sort of approach. California photography, video, art, and music surrounding good design.

 

Surround your brand with LA, don't force your brand into LA.

 

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Bingo. I think you articulated the problem really well. I was thinking of something similar, how the Dodgers’ “LA” is a strong associative symbol of LA without any extra “storytelling” frills. The Lakers fit that mold perfectly as well, and thier logo is just a basketball with text across it. And yet, that evokes SO much of an LA vibe every time I see it.

 

Why? Because these symbols over time have woven themselves into the history of Los Angeles. They became a chapter of the LA story all on thier own instead of trying too hard to tell the story in its entirety themselves. Great and timeless brands in sports that are able to naturally become a part of thier locale’s history and culture - without being forced to within every fiber - are ultimately much more endearing, in my opinion.

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I wonder if part of the issue here is that the Rams, as a brand, has never really evoked LA on its own. Even in the '60s and '70s eras of Deacon Jones and Jack Youngblood, I think more of frigid winter playoff games in Minnesota than I do of sunshine, surfing and beaches. Strangely, I don't think USC or UCLA suffer from this same issue. Then again, it could just be me. 

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4 minutes ago, FinsUp1214 said:


Bingo. I think you articulated the problem really well. I was thinking of something similar, how the Dodgers’ “LA” is a strong associative symbol of LA without any extra “storytelling” frills. The Lakers fit that mold perfectly as well, and thier logo is just a basketball with text across it. And yet, that evokes SO much of an LA vibe every time I see it.

 

Why? Because these symbols over time have woven themselves into the history of Los Angeles. They became a chapter of the LA story all on thier own instead of trying too hard to tell the story in its entirety themselves. Great and timeless brands in sports that are able to naturally become a part of thier locale’s history and culture - without being forced to within every fiber - are ultimately much more endearing, in my opinion.

 

This is a good take. The key to branding in LA is that you can't give the impression that you are trying to be socal cool or LA. That just comes organically...time and time again you can spot the transplants or relocated businesses that are trying to mimic the vibe without actually understanding what it is. You really have to take your time to understand the local culture before you can attempt to integrate yourself. Rams management thought they could just show up, be welcomed back with open arms, and gain instant credibility because they once played in socal when in reality most Angeleno's moved on 25 years ago. As I'm typing this what really amazes me is how as an expansion team how LAFC got it so right and how piss poor both the rams and chargers arrival has been.

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3 hours ago, CreamSoda said:

Why can't teams just use block numbers...  

 

Because there's no reason to.  A better question is "why can't teams just use good looking numbers".

 

2 hours ago, _DietDrPepper_ said:

 it's LA's fault for choosing the Chargers over what was a much better candidate in the Raiders to move to LA. 

 

The Rams didn't have the choice.  The NFL gave the Chargers the right of first refusal.  There was nothing the Rams could have done about it.

 

51 minutes ago, Ridleylash said:

They're trying too hard to make themselves the "LOS ANGELES Rams", focusing on the market above all else. Thus why the primary isn't a ram head, but a giant LA; they put too much emphasis on location when it came to branding.

The Dodgers are probably the only team I could really see getting away with having an LA logo be a focal point of the brand, because it's both a baseball aesthetic to have monograms on the cap and because they're the unquestionable biggest act in town when it comes to sports; but even they don't have a simple monogram as their primary logo, but instead use the team name.

 

I disagree with this.  Los Angeles is more marketable than Rams.  There's only a few cities where the city itself takes precedence over the team.  An NY or LA team doesn't need to rely on cuddly mascots or goofy logos to vie for attention.  That's why I think the Yankees don't need logos on their uniforms, or a goofy mascot that you see everywhere (let their minor league teams in Scranton and elsewhere do that.)  The NYG don't need a goofy Giant logo on their sleeve.  It's N F'n Y.

 

I see it similarly with LA.  An LA + horn logo is all they needed (it's just that the one they made sucks.)  Nothing wrong with a ram logo just to put on some kids merch, but LA is more important than Rams- - just as it is with the Kings.

 

People wear NY stuff not necessarily because they're fans of the team, but the NY means something so some people (especially internationally.)  Same with LA.

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I wonder if part of the problem is that they bet pretty big on the new horn shape and it just doesn't really do it. 

 

ramshelmet.jpg

 

I understand for most of us its tolerable but it was supposed to be a slam dunk. The color is nice but the new shape was supposed to carry the design. 

 

Much of the identity (including both logos) is built around it. Even the arch of the gap is present on an otherwise bare bone jersey. The sweeping lines are in numbers. The problem is that the intended 3D effect really doesn't show up well when its single color. It works a lot better when there's more around it to add reference or where there's additional shading.

 

3237_los_angeles_rams-alternate-2020.png

 

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1 hour ago, ramsker said:

 

I feel like they're trying to tell me what LA is, when I already know what LA is. They already had the culture and imagery baked in by simply being in LA.

 

Seems to me like they wasted all of that by using contrived gimmicks.

 

Am I off-base with that thinking?

 

i can see that too. part of the problem with the process is that there might be 30 people involved in it from team, Nike, and NFL. and there are at the very least 3 people who all have to agree on something about the future of the team and what they want to represent. i think what we've seen a lot this year is teams having a foot in the past and one in the future, and not in that romantic "respect the past, represent the future" way Nike says they strive for, but in a way that says "there's something really wrong here". they're trying to do something new while also trying to be 1980's Rams. the Chargers went backwards mostly, so they go the streetwear route and target that whole scene. and whatever you want to think about that decision... thats where they are

 

32 minutes ago, FinsUp1214 said:


Right, the activity of mood boards and this particular process makes sense. We employ a very similar process on the design team I work with as well, so I 100% get what they’re trying to do in terms of process steps and I think most of us here understand that it’s part of the process as well. It’s the content within it though that’s getting roasted here, and you outlined why pretty well; “disjointed” is a pretty great word for it. To me, everything on those mood boards was pretty nonsensical. It’s bad beat poetry. It’s trying to capture a bunch of “essences” that seemed to be forced into relating somehow to each other, varying from the abstract to the just plain cheesy. And granted, we don’t have the whole process in view and maybe some stuff is out of context, but I was unable to come to any sensical conclusion as to what was trying to be honed into out of all that inspiration. It’s all still got to funnel into something, and I don’t think it ever did.

 

The more I think of it, the more I theorize that it was probably in these very steps where the wheels came off the wagon. You see it in the story behind the LA horn, where there was this market-speak about sunshine and waves and SoCal life wrapped up in one single ram horn. It’s a ram horn, why are you trying to write a whole novel about California within a single ram horn? The Rams just flat out went too deep and stayed there, ultimately looking to me like an end result of a process that was over-saturated with excitement and attachment to far too many ideas and abstract inspiration.

 

that whole story about the horn— they're trying to do something new that a lot of people can agree with. a lot of people have input to. there's a lot of needs and goals set up to be met. so the result, to me, is not surprising. well, i mean i'll never support the decision to change the horn so dramatically, that seems like a no-brainer. they have everything else to work with, but somehow, the team and NFL agreed to it. (i have doubts about that coming from Nike).
 

 

6 minutes ago, FinsUp1214 said:


Bingo. I think you articulated the problem really well. I was thinking of something similar, how the Dodgers’ “LA” is a strong associative symbol of LA without any extra “storytelling” frills. The Lakers fit that mold perfectly as well, and thier logo is just a basketball with text across it. And yet, that evokes SO much of an LA vibe every time I see it.

 

Why? Because these symbols over time have woven themselves into the history of Los Angeles. They became a chapter of the LA story all on thier own instead of trying too hard to tell the story in its entirety themselves. Great and timeless brands in sports that are able to naturally become a part of thier locale’s history and culture - without being forced to within every fiber - are ultimately much more endearing, in my opinion.

 

it helps that the Dodgers have been there for so long and havent changed anything about their identity, while being a good team. i dont know if the Rams who have bounced back and forth really is an apples to apples comparison. especially when they have this new modern stadium and are trying to lead the way in sports entertainment. that should probably be reflected in all their identity points but ...

 

man, i have so many feeling about this. i hate the horn, but love the helmet paint. like the general streetwear vibe, but hate all the "plastic" on the jerseys. its just so much of so many things. we look back on the Broncos and Bucs of the late 90s when it was an owner and 3-5 people at Nike doing that stuff (or whoever did the Bucs) and compare modern uniforms and branding to that— its clear there are just too many people involved now. at least DEN and TB look cohesive and theres 1 thing happening there. 

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18 minutes ago, BringBackTheVet said:

There's only a few cities where the city itself takes precedence over the team.  An NY or LA team doesn't need to rely on cuddly mascots or goofy logos to vie for attention.  That's why I think the Yankees don't need logos on their uniforms, or a goofy mascot that you see everywhere (let their minor league teams in Scranton and elsewhere do that.)  The NYG don't need a goofy Giant logo on their sleeve.  It's N F'n Y.

 

I see it similarly with LA.  An LA + horn logo is all they needed (it's just that the one they made sucks.)  Nothing wrong with a ram logo just to put on some kids merch, but LA is more important than Rams- - just as it is with the Kings.

 

People wear NY stuff not necessarily because they're fans of the team, but the NY means something so some people (especially internationally.)  Same with LA.

My problem with that is that the Rams aren't really a team like the Yankees. Similar, but not the same. The key components of the LA Rams brand have generally been as such;

  • Blue/yellow/white colors (an exception pretty early on, but this has very overwhelmingly been the franchise's main color scheme)
  • Ram horns on the helmet (a design element that's remained mostly the same since the 1940's, including pretty much the franchise's entire tenure in Los Angeles aside from three anomalous years very early in their life)
  • Ram head logo (something dating all the way back to the team's time in Cleveland)

Nowhere in this time, even in their massive stretch in Los Angeles, has an LA monogram ever been the focal point of the Rams' brand identity; it's been either the head of a ram or the helmet itself, never an LA monogram. Hell, it's never really even been a secondary for the team. The most emphasis they put on "LA" specifically was in a wordmark in the 80's and 90's before the team :censored:ed off to St. Louis for a bit, not a primary logo.

 

And as for the Giants? They've had giant logos before, and in fact still do have one;

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In fact, the giant logo predates the NY logo; that logo didn't come in until 1961. From 1940 to 1960, the Giants just didn't have a logo on the helmet period and the giant logo served as their primary. So one could argue a giant logo for NYG would be traditional, not goofy.

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The Football Giants' "giant" logos kinda suck, though. Like, really suck. It's better that they just stick to the "NY" and use the "giant-ness" of NYC as the reason for the name. Heck, I reasoned that the baseball Giants would do much the same trick with their identity (using the Mets' design to represent the city).

 

Ld25EuA.png?1

 

But back to the Rams: I get why they'd want an "LA" logo, to cement themselves as the city's team and to ensure security in their location following the St. Louis exile. It's a shame that the logo is so poorly executed and the identity as a whole became a confused mess that's bound to be replaced ASAP. However, I like the idea of an "LA" logo to go along with a ram head. 

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8 minutes ago, BrandMooreArt said:

 i'll never support the decision to change the horn so dramatically, that seems like a no-brainer. they have everything else to work with, but somehow, the team and NFL agreed to it. (i have doubts about that coming from Nike.)

 

That's interesting. That would imply that the helmet redesign happened first, and everything else followed?  I'd like to know why you think that.

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1 hour ago, MDGP said:


...one of those “I trained an AI to watch 100 hours of graphic design processes and here’s what it came up with.

The sad thing is that a properly-trained AI would have done a better job. ;)

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7 minutes ago, oldschoolvikings said:

 

That's interesting. That would imply that the helmet redesign happened first, and everything else followed?  I'd like to know why you think that.

 

Just about every screen grab of the process shows the segmented horn. 

 

My guess is the LA logo came first. I don't know if segmenting the horn happens unless you're really trying to make it blend with the LA. I also promise you the Fibonacci idea was early in the process as well. 

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There's not really any chance they didn't start with the LA and work the brand out from there. You don't start your branding process from the secondary logo, and from all we've seen, the LA has always been the primary.

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The Rams' whole redesign strikes me as the sports design version of this.

 

jys3k2kSpHUM58kr0Gp_bfmyBeNSRgIf84HDYQ55

 

It's not needed, fixes some issues while screwing with a bunch of what made it work before, and is very much a case of "we can do it, so let's do it!" 

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White and off-white shouldn't touch. White and yellow definitely shouldn't touch. And yellow and off-white probably shouldn't touch either. Yet all three of those are happening on their pants. There are so many back-to-the-drawing-board moments here, but that one is such a big one to me.

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By the way, LAFC instituted a new brand in LA that had immediate legitimacy and immediate cool factor in the broader LA metro area (at least, that's my understanding), and they didn't have to try so hard to do it.

 

While there are aspects of the new Rams set I like, in general, simple is better. There's nothing simple about the new LA Rams. LAFC is "LA" + a wing in gold and black. Boom, done. LA Rams are a segmented horn + bone + white/yellow accents + lots of pant colors + sol + instagram photos of LA locales. Doesn't work, my friends.

 

EDIT:

BBKhuNk.img

 

vs.

1024px-Los_Angeles_Rams_logo.svg.png

 

Which is more immediately "cool" to you?

 

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I know I've mostly made jokes in my posts since the Rams uniform unveiling, but I still can't help but think that these were the result of trying too hard to be "new".

 

Clearly, the team wanted something "new", which I still think is the major flaw in their thinking. I mean, I get it, you're moving into a new stadium, you want new and shiny and even revolutionary to match up with your new multi-billion dollar palace.

 

But, the reality is, you're not new and shiny. Even, for a moment, putting aside your previous history in the City of Angels, you've been back in LA for four seasons now, including a Super Bowl run in the postseason. I think it's clear that people wanted an evolution of what you were in the previous stint in LA, combined with your recent set (which, again, you've worn for four seasons in Los Angeles). It's why most people are happy with the royal blue and bright yellow colors -- that points back to your roots. It's why there's such a split on the new horns, though I think even those who like it would admit it isn't an improvement on the old horn (and I think the majority opinion is that old horns > new horns). 

 

Basically, I think an "evolution" from the classic Rams set is what was expected; instead, they came up with something that vaguely (in two colors) relates to what the LA Rams have always looked like.

 

Just my two cents.

 

Oh, and I'm now very curious about these two alts that are coming in the next two years -- I'm wondering, especially after the reactions to the 2020 set, if those will revert to more of a classic look (or an evolution of it) versus more "new" and "shiny".

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17 hours ago, Crabcake said:

I literally never post in here but I came just to laugh at how much these suck

Totally off topic, but I absolutely LOVE your Plague Doctor costume-wearing Ravens avatar! The Bubonic BaltiMoronic Plague-vens (or something like that) . . .
I also enjoyed when Mark Crozer's band (albeit he himself did not) sported such outfits whilst performing 'Broken out of Love' — Bray Wyatt's theme song — during The Wyatt Family's entrance at WWE's WrestleMania XXX / 30, which was held in the Super Dome. Or rather, as Hollywood Hulk Hogan mistakenly called it several times — much to the chagrin and correcting cheers of the audience members aka "Hulkamaniacs", plus eventual subsequent teasing via both Stone Cold Steve Austin & The Rock — the Silver Dome...

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