Pittsburgh Penguins | Skillshare Projects



Pittsburgh Penguins

For me, being a Pittsburgh native, the black and yellow color scheme immediately comes to mind. It's what represents not only the sports teams, but also the city. It brings the community of Pittsburgh together, unites the fans and people as one with two basic colors. Black and yellow. Recently however, with a rebrand, the Penguins have gotten away form this and switched from yellow to 'Vegas gold' as the team calls it. It still maintains the black and yellow representation of the city, but it's straying from tradition. A tradition that dates back to the original hockey team in the city, the Pittsburgh Pirates, to the Steelers, the baseball Pirates and every other team that graces the city of Pittsburgh from the minor league soccer Riverhounds to the indoor football team the Power. It's all black and yellow. The Penguins, in my mind, need to go back to these colors. They lobbied for it and succeeded after the 'City of Champions' Steelers and Pirates won championships in the same year after coming into the NHL as a blue and white team. They switched to black and yellow and have been ever since...until the early 2000's when they switched to Vegas Gold. 

Not only is the black and yellow an important symbol of the city, it's important for it's sports teams. With the introduction of the Reebok rebrand after the 2005 lockout in the NHL, originality went out the window. There were cookie cutter jerseys and teams that started to look the same minus the colors and logo. Immediatley the jerseys that stood out were the Penguins, Ottawa Senators and Tampa Bay Lightning. These three teams had the same template jerseys, simply with different colors and logos. Originality was gone. Since then however the Lightning have changed jerseys. It's time for the Penguins and Senators to follow suit.

The Penguins have a fantastic history of jerseys. With a city full of history, inspiration doesn't need to be drawn from just the Penguins, it can be drawn from the Pirates and Steelers as well. As seen in their 'Winter Classic' jerseys they've worn in their last outdoor game, the Penguins drew inspiration from a few different jerseys and created a mish-mash of these jerseys, drawing from the past. With such a rich history in their past and the great players that have played for the organization, a nod to the past is not a bad thing in this instance. While they have used light and navy blue in the past for their jersey inspiration, it doesn't represent the city. Taking inspiration from the past and manipulating it to black and yellow however is a different ballgame. The city is very traditional, so to have any colors beside black and yellow is a crime. 

What I'm striving for is a combination of the past with a bit of streamlining. A mix of the old, black and yellow, combined with a more modernized look. The logo currently is a bit too caroon-ish, so perhaps a slight upgrade in toughness would help as well.
For my design, I went way back and drew inspiration from the Pittsburgh Pirates hockey team of the early 1900's. I really wanted to create something unique for the Penguins, while still maintaining a somewhat traditional look. I actually took one design and ran with it, however I'd like to update and play with a few things on it.
I took the original Penguins logo-made-vintage for their recent 'faux-back' jerseys with the off white and used that for the base color. Vintage apparel with this Penguins logo seems to be a huge draw amongst Pittsburgh fans. My favorite Penguins jersey of all time is the yellow-based jersey from the 80's shown in the inspiration board, so having that as the main away jersey was going to be a main focus (the black jersey being more of a 'third jersey'). 
The city of Pittsburgh is well known for the three rivers that surround downtown (the Allegheny and Monongahela for the Ohio river), so having three stripes/colors to represent this was also a huge focal point, coincidentally, the same number of championships the Penguins have won since their NHL innuaguration in 1967.  
Color-wise, the Penguins switched over to a 'Vegas-Gold' in the early 2000's...and clearly Pittsburgh is not in Las Vegas, so to have the color switch back to the traditional 'black and yellow' of all of the Pittsburgh sports teams was a very important factor in color. Nothing says tradition like Pittsburgh and black and yellow.
Figured I'd post just a sample of what I wanted the final jersey to look like, numbers and all. I wanted to keep it simple, but slightly modern with the number/letter choice, hence the block style, but lack of stroke. I also decided to add an extra color to the shoulder yoke, as just the solid yellow looked a bit flat.


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