June 13, 2021 | By
Humans are full of wild and wonderful dynamism and we have huge appreciation for creatives who offer their entire incredible selves to the world, no matter what. This month’s Top 13 celebrates the moving designs that speak for themselves, and elevate the power of belonging through love. These incredible PRIDE month posters and signage have moved mountains and we hope they move you too… towards a smile, inspiration and passion to encourage love in all its forms.
Dava’s Picks: Founder and Chief Creative Officer
- Stunning, color-blocked posters from the 2020 Lisbon Pride Parade were designed to communicate “pride, optimism, determination and confidence,” and we are feeling it! Of course we believe passionate design can change the world and these posters are an excellent example.
- The combination of 6 cheerful hues from all around the color wheel (AKA the rainbow) has long been the visual representation of #LoveisLove. These captivating, overlapping spheres designed by London’s Kai Damian Matthiesen, absolutely draw attention while their simplicity allows the messaging to shine through in full power.
- And of course the esteemed Herman Miller, with his vibrant color use and clean lines across offers this gorgeous support for the LGBTQ community.
Andre’s Picks: Associate Creative Director
- Pride is a Protest! Created by SF based designer and Illustrator Win Mixter as part of a poster-kiosk series for the 2020 50th anniversary of Gay Pride, recognizes 18 unique individuals, places and protests from pre-stonewall through modern days. The beautifully done 36 black and white illustrations and lettering posters aimed to re-center the narrative away from the capitalistic appropriation of the rainbow flag, to its original principles of resistance, rebellion, and radical self-expression. Win is a long time volunteer at the GLBT Historical Society (well worth a visit) goes the distance to curate the appropriate placement for each poster throughout its Market Street route.
Jane’s Picks: Sr. Strategist
- It gets better and sometimes you’ve gotta laugh to keep from crying. Our hearts are smiling over this incredible list of funny (and true) posters. They offer up some of the best medicine and a lot of food for thought. Which one is your favorite?
Elaine’s Picks: Designer
- We like the simple, yet direct posters and stickers from British LGBTQ+ rights group, Outrage. Founded in the 1900s following the murders of several gay men in London, Outrage is committed to nonviolent, direct action and civil disobedience. That’s some outrage we can definitely get behind!
Meb’s Picks: Designer
- Where better to look for Pride ephemera than a book about queer design? Andy Campbell’s book Queer x Design covers centuries of queer history, including famous and less-well-known posters and artifacts. From Gilbert Baker’s original Pride flag, to early covers of magazines by the Mattachine Society and the video game Casper in the Castro, queer history is everywhere!
- In the late 80s, one of the most iconic poster campaigns also happened to be one of the gayest. Kissing Doesn’t Kill: Greed and Indifference Do, by Gran Fury, was plastered on busses and billboards, and displayed queer people loving each other and looking great while doing it. Public health can look this inclusive!
- Modern Pride posters usually center around Gilbert Baker’s iconic rainbow flag, but before 1978, the queer design lexicon was largely homemade! We love these vintage posters from the LA Gay Liberation Front, showing all the different design directions that the LGBTQ+ community took to express itself visually in the 60s and 70s.
Suzanne’s Picks: Operations Leader
- This month, the San Francisco LGBT Center has a new mural, “Queeroes!”, designed by local queer Latino artists, Juan Manuel Carmona and Simón Malvaez. Using the (now) traditional Pride flag colors, they created a powerful visual representation of queer historical icons and local leaders. Among the dynamos represented, Sister Roma, Honey Mahogany, Harvey Milk and Frida Kahlo, all radiate with joy of love.
Xiaoxiao’s Picks: Junior Designer
- Another great showing from the enigmatic, Kai Damian Mattiesen, this poster for an LGBTQ Party Series “Born this way,” compels attendance to a drag show, where we’d surely be in attendance.
Zili’s Picks: Junior Designer
- With incredible art deco nods, this work listed in the USC Digital Library from the Morris Kight McCadden Place Collection is stunning in B&W. Christopher Street West the gay parade evokes the stark emotions latent in advocacy work. It’s not always joyful to fight for inclusion and this work communicates the work and the power of persistence with profound elegance.
Jada’s Picks: Design Intern
- Designer and activist Su Negrin designed this poster just a year after the Stonewall riots. The warm and optimistic images, a combination of Peter Hujar’s “Come Out!” photo and Suzanne Bevier’s mandala and lettering, were sold through issue 7 of Come Out! The same year, Negrin and Bevier created another poster for Times Change Press. Both pieces remain some of the most iconic graphics to come from the Gay Liberation movement.
So, what do you think? Inspired to create your own advocacy signage? While June is Pride Month in most US states, we believe in year-round advocacy through daily allyship, and would love to work with LGBTQ organizations and organizers, alike.
Let us know how we can support your inclusive org by reaching out to firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to spreading the love with you!