The Grand Canyon State

The Original

The elements to the flag include

  • Blue bar on bottom

  • Thirteen rays alternating red and yellow

  • Copper star

The flag of Arizona was adapted January 25, 1917.

This flag has good design. The North American Vexillology Association ranks this the fifth best state flag. In general, I like this flag for every detail but one-the copper star. 

This flag was ranked 6th out of 72 flags in America and Canada by the North American Vexillology Association in their 2001 survey.

I love the history of this flag. It is so well designed that one would never guess that it was originally thrown together in haste in 1910. A rifle team from Arizona arrived at a competition in Ohio and realized they couldn’t participate without a flag so they created one on the spot. 

Keep it simple: This flag is effectively simple. The thirteen rays are the most complicated part and it is executed in a simple way.

Use meaningful symbolism: The rays represent sun beams, the effect symbolizing the setting sun over the desert. There are thirteen rays, one for each of the original colonies. The bronze star represents the copper production of the state. The blue field on bottom symbolizes liberty.

Use two or three basic colors: In this flag we see four colors being used. I feel like the copper is a bad element for this flag as it is so similar to the red of the rays that it contrasts terribly. 

No lettering or seals: This flag has no lettering or seals.

Be distinctive or be related: Arizona has one of the few totally distinct flags with the rays over the blue bar.

The Redesign

Keep it simple: I felt the original flag was beautifully simple, but needed a few adjustments, mainly the star needed to go. I traded it out for a yellow half circle. The rays extened now two thirds of the flag. 

Use meaningful symbolism: I chaged the star to a half circle to represent the sun. 

Use two or three basic colors: In this flag we see three colors being used.

No lettering or seals: There is no lettering or seals.

Be distinctive or be related: This flag is still distinct with the sun setting over the blue bar.