Type With Pride: How The Gilbert Font Will Inspire A New Generation Of Designers

June 19, 2020

Great design can inspire us, unite us, and give us hope.

Great design can ignite conversations and provoke change, wresting us out of ignorance.

In 1978 gay rights activist and artist Gilbert Baker set out to create a new symbol for the gay and lesbian movement to replace the pink triangle — a Nazi relic from World War II. Gilbert’s experience as an openly gay man in San Francisco and his work as a vexillographer gave him a unique opportunity to highlight the movement at a critical moment when LGBTQIA+ people were fighting for equal rights. Gilbert conceived of the Rainbow Flag, which he displayed at United Nations Plaza on June 25, 1978 to commemorate the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade.

 Gilbert channeled everything he knew and everything he loved into the design of the Rainbow Flag. He poured all his passion, his skill, and his hope into a flag which is now one of the most powerful symbols on earth. Since the Rainbow Flag’s first public unveiling in San Francisco in 1978, it has been raised countless times all over the world as a sign of empowerment and solidarity with the LGBTQIA+ community.

Gilbert passed away on March 31, 2017. Great designers are immortalized through their work, yet Gilbert’s contribution to the LGBTQIA+ movement earned him a distinctive form of recognition. To honor his legacy, Ogilvy New York, NewFest, and NYC Pride partnered with Fontself to create a free font inspired by the timeless design of the Rainbow Flag. Befitting the origins of the Rainbow Flag, this font was specifically designed for headlines and protest banners.

The name of this font? Gilbert. And this is its story:

Type With Pride Web from chrisrowson on Vimeo.

“We are proud to be part of an incredible type project that honors the creator of the iconic Rainbow Flag. We hope the Gilbert font inspires designers and typographers for years to come.”

~Franz Hoffman & Mohamed Ghenania, co-founders, Fontself

For every story an organization creates, for every message a designer wants to share, they need the right fonts to bring their vision to life. If you already know and love the Gilbert font, please share this article and spread the word. And if you’re just learning about Gilbert for the first time, this font is for you. This font is for all of us.

Design with pride, create with pride… and the next time you type, type with pride.


Gilbert is the first third-party color font available on Adobe Fonts, and can be easily installed through the Adobe Creative Cloud App.