5 Nov 2013

My neighborhood...

Neighborhoods are a common wondering by flag designers [see examples]. The mine haven't a flag, although others in my city do. I had an almost clear idea about what it should be, but it's the first time I "formally" design a flag to it.

I live in a neighborhood (I'll translate "bairro" as this, although "borough" also sounds adequate) called "Cidade Patriarca" (translating, "Patriarch's City"), a proletarian neighborhood in the suburbs of São Paulo, yet too young: it was officially founded only in 1948, when a train station was inaugurated.

Firstly, I'd like the arms to be partly canting, making a tribute to the José Bonifácio, the "patriarch of independence", in effect to his importance in this event. So the flag is green and yellow (more details below). In fact, the anniversary of the neighborhood, September 7th, is also the date of Brazilian independence, and the public schools of the bairro are named after José Bonifácio and the viscount of Cairu (other important politician of the independence time).

It also should have an tree, as one of its key characteristics was being planned (what's an exception), and the large green areas and wide streets are still visible in the landscape. Other feature should be the red color, a reference to the red clay that existed before the region was totally paved: it's very remembered by the oldest inhabitants of the region, specially about how the shoes and pants hems were ruined by red mud after the rains!

My first attempt was the following:

I like how much the design is similar to Brazilian flag, but it's very generic, don't you think? I decided to keep the reference to José Bonifácio clearer. Although he and his relatives denied nobility titles and coats of arms more than once, there's city of Santos coat of arms, white a green and golden bend in reference to José Bonifácio. Based on Santos coat of arms:

My final design, that I like only a bit more than anterior, has a green tree:

Curiously, I once heard that there was a local football team called "Patriarca FC" (or something like this) whose colors were red (actually, maroon), white and green. Although all designs are good, I think the third is the most appropriate. All of them are based on principles of Portuguese vexillology, followed in many parts of Brazil, but simplified to a more striking effect.

Comments are welcome.
What about design a flag for your local community? If you do it, post a link on the comments.

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