22 Emojis we’d like to see for expressing life in the Motor City


Emojis: They’re those little bits of digital cuneiform that people use on phones as shorthand. They can help convey subtle emotions or be used to convey larger ideas with 8-bit elegance. Emojis have become more than that happy face your pal sends you in a chat, having spawned such popular Twitter memes as #emojiarthistory, and even an all-emoji version of Moby Dick.

The international appeal of these little guys is huge. But while emojis might facilitate global mobile culture so that people speaking different languages can communicate using a string of glyphs, the limited selection of emojis does leave the local yokel wanting.

So we wondered what would a selection of Detroit-centric emojis look like? How would we boil down big Detroit ideas into cute little pictographs? We put our heads together, and with a little design magic, we came up with dream set of Motor City emojis. Here they are, along with descriptions and what they might mean.

Illustrations by Lee DeVito and Anna Aichinger