Our redesign and rebrand

The methodology behind our new identity.

J.J. Martinez
Mar 16 · 6 min read

We launched a new El Paso County Democratic Party brand identity across our site and social media accounts this week. If you’ve checked our Twitter or paid close attention to the March For Truth ads we sent out, you’ve already seen our new logo. (We leaked it.) But there’s more; a lot more.


TL;DR: We changed our logo, introduced a new font, and rebranded our messaging.


The need to redesign and rebrand

The El Paso County Democratic Party (El Paso Democrats) is the largest political party in the El Paso region. Engulfing the cities of El Paso, Horizon, San Elizario, Socorro, and the towns of Clint and Anthony, we reach out to nearly one million people every year. As we wrapped up a fiercely fought Senate race, elected the first Latina to the U.S. House of Representatives, sent an all Democratic caucus to Austin, and elected all Democratic county commissioners, we realized how rapidly the nature of politics in the digital world is changing. We saw the campaigns Democrats and Republicans were running across the city, county, state, and nation, and realized something important: change, when meaningful, is good. As a Party, we understand the need for us to change and evolve so that we are able to grow and grow strong.

We hope that our efforts in redesigning and rebranding the Party are not in vain. We hope to use our new-found identity and share it with El Pasoans across the county, from the lower valley to the far westside. We simply couldn’t do that with the old logo or old ways of approaching branding. That’s why we embarked on this journey and we’re incredibly proud of the result.


Our redesign

The logo: The Sun Shining Left

First and foremost, we looked at our logo, the symbol of who we are as a Party. While the Party tried to create a new logo a few years back, it simply wasn’t doing the job of a logo. We tried a lot of different designs in order to compensate but, as you may have noticed, we haven’t done a very good job of being consistent. We wanted to change that.

The logo adopted in 2017

So, we started from scratch. The result: a beautiful, simple, and usable icon that symbolizes who we are. We call it the Sun Shining Left.

Our new symbol, the Sun Shining Left

We took the basic “D” of the Democratic Party’s logo and combined it with our city’s nickname, the Sun City. The sun points to the left of the “D” as a reminder of our commitment to bringing real, democratic change to our community in line with the values and ideas of the Democratic Party. The stark contrast between the colors in the logo represent the Party’s diversity in ideas: from centrist to progressive. As we say, there is room for every Democrat in our Party.

Combination mark
Combination mark, simplified

Note: We ask that the Party be referred to as the “El Paso County Democratic Party” and “El Paso Democrats” be used as the abbreviation. “El Paso Dems” as an abbreviation is discouraged but acceptable; however, it is encouraged when discussing our online presence: @elpasodems is our handle and is our official website.

The colors: Expressions of El Paso

Color palette

We’ve chosen five distinct colors — aside from white (#FFFFFF) — that represent our community. The two blues and the teal color are expressions of who we are as Democrats: from the border, on the Rio Grande, making progress happen. The orange and yellow, though we call them secondary colors, are equally as important. They are vibrant expressions of our city and and serve as exciting, energizing colors that move away from the traditional blue associated with the national Party. They make us unique. They make us El Paso.

The Sun Shining Left on different colors

The font: A consistent beauty

The search for a font to pair with the Sun Shining Left and use across platforms was difficult. Though we tried using the font we had been using for a long time, D-DIN Condensed, we noticed that similar fonts were used everywhere for political causes. (Look at the ACLU’s font, for example.) We paired D-DIN Condensed with IBM Plex Serif, feeling the need to incorporate some more traditional font with the modernity and boldness of the previous.

When looking for a font this time, however, we decided that we did not need to pair the font with something else. We wanted consistency. We decided to choose Greycliff by the talented Connary Fagen.

Greycliff by Connary Fagen

While playful, Greycliff is serious too. It is geometric yet not made of perfect lines and one-angle curves. It is a representation of our community’s perfections and a reminder of the work we still have to do to continue moving El Paso forward.

Simply, it looks awesome.


Our rebrand

Our message: For All El Pasoans

We’ve thought long and hard about what we want our county to know about their Party. We fight for a lot of different things every single day and no one issue is more important than the other. In El Paso, while we don’t always agree with one another, we understand that when one of us falls, we all fall. Our community was built on cooperation and continues to stay strong because we stand together. That’s why we’re introducing our 2019 message: For All El Pasoans.

As we look to the future, we want all El Pasoans to know that regardless of who you are, who you love, what side of town you live on, what religion you practice or don’t, what side of the border you come from, or who you voted for, we’re fighting for you.

We’re fighting to make healthcare for all El Pasoans a reality.

We’re fighting to make affordable education for all El Pasoans a reality.

We’re fighting to make fair taxes for all El Pasoans a reality.

We’re fighting to make community investment for all El Pasoans a reality.

We’re fighting to make representation for all El Pasoans a reality.

That’s who El Paso Democrats are: fighters for all the people.

One march, one rally, one election at a time

We also recognize, however, that we cannot build a Sun City for all El Pasoans without doing. At the heart of change are marches, rallies, and elections. We joined the fight and marched against Trump’s lies about our community. We joined the fight and rallied for safer gun laws in our country. And, we joined the fight and voted for Democrats who represent our interests in El Paso, Austin, and Washington, D.C. Change for all El Pasoans, though painstaking and slow at times, comes when we participate. As the chant goes: “This is what democracy looks like!”

March For Truth (El Paso, Texas, 2019)

Conclusions

We’ll be the first to admit that this may seem extra or overkill. We’re a political party, not a company. But let’s be honest: the way we do politics in the United States will not and will never be the same. As technology advances and our society evolves, organizations must advance and evolve if they want to reach and relate to the communities they’re in. We recognize that fact.

We want our Party to be more recognizable. More consistent. And, more relatable. We want El Pasoans to feel that they are part of something larger than themselves. That’s what this redesign and rebrand aims to do.

And, let’s be honest: you want a shirt with our new logo on it.

El Paso Democrats

We’re the El Paso County Democratic Party, working to build a Sun City for all El Pasoans, one march, one rally, one election at a time. This is our blog.

    J.J. Martinez

    Written by

    El Pasoan

    El Paso Democrats

    We’re the El Paso County Democratic Party, working to build a Sun City for all El Pasoans, one march, one rally, one election at a time. This is our blog.

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