January is synonymous with a clean slate, a fresh start, and a time that signals the release of all kinds of predictions for what this new calendar year will bring us. Even though our designers despise the “T” word, (Karl Lagerfeld said it best, “Trendy is the final stage before tacky.”) influence and inspiration can, and often is, drawn from what is mainstream. Therefore it is essential that creatives, like us, keep our fingers on the pulse of what is “hot”. We’ve compiled 3 graphic design trends that the industry predicts you’ll be seeing a whole lot more of in 2018.
1. Bright Colours
Say goodbye to the moody hipster-esque days of greys and blacks, because colour is back in a major way for 2018. Hands down one of the biggest anticipated design trends to expect will be the use of super bright and bold colour choices.
This hot trend on the rise may be attributed to the need to stand out in a sea of advertising. The app world has wholeheartedly embraced (or perhaps started) this trend - with limited space to pack a punch, app icon design relies on vivid colours that both speak to their product/services while “popping” off the users’ screen.
Pantone Color Institute has released their colour trend forecast for home & interiors, featuring eight palettes that are anything but subtle - from turquoise pink, to bright yellow and lime green! Take a peek.
Colour choices can often be polarizing; a real world application of bold colour usage can be seen in the rebranding efforts of Dropbox.com. Talk about bright and unique colour combos! Here at Bits our personal preference of the new look ranged from hate to love, yet regardless of opinion, their branding is the perfect example of how being an industry design trendsetter can generate brand interest and greater awareness.
Image source: https://dropbox.design
2. Hand-Drawn Illustrations
Illustrations made a splash in 2017, but this design style is set to keep going strong through 2018. This back-to-basics approach is all about adding the (often missing) human element into modern design. It has the ability to look ultra-customized and is very accessible, but the true power of illustration lies in its flexibility - whimsical and free-spirited, to chic and elegant, there are many creative directions a designer can take.
Illustrated fonts and icons are the perfect design elements to make a website look and feel truly one-of-a-kind. That was exactly our intent when our design team worked on the Wake Up Halifax Campaign for United Way Halifax. We wanted to bring the essence of Halifax to life and visualize the brand spirit through customized illustrations. Take a look at what we created below.
3. Artistic Typography
Typography has always been a crucial asset in design as it determines the layout and style of all text, but the emergence of creative (or artistic) typography elevates the form to a new level. So much more than just fonts, when properly utilized, your choice of typography visually sets the tone of voice for your brand as you relay your message. Therefore it is essential to choose wisely when deciding on the creative direction of typography.
Artistic typography can take many shapes (literally) but has many subforms within its own discipline. Some of 2018’s artistic typography trends include; geometric design, typography as real elements, and the continued popularity of handwritten elements.
Our designers recently utilized a handwritten font for a dash of character and to introduce a custom-made look to a client's tagline, through leveraging the use of a great font, Marydale (see below). Marydale was made by mimicking the actual pristine handwriting of the art-director in which it is named after. The typography choice has the power to transform the tagline into something that portrays a greater sense of personalization.
Bonus Trend: Inclusive Design
We certainly hope this falls more into the category of “essential” and less of a trend. The shift towards inclusive design has begun, and is changing the way in which your customers are able to relate with you online. We’ve always taken pride in ensuring our custom-built websites are inclusive and diverse, and we feel It’s important to be mindful of the differing perspectives and abilities that exist beyond our office walls to help eliminate the barriers to inclusion.
Happy Trend Spotting!
Among the many trends headed our way, there is one key differentiator that sets this new year apart, and that is the seemingly go big or go home mentality. From bright & bold colour usage to larger than life font choices, and the rise of designing to disrupt, we are definitely in store for some mold shattering brand designs in 2018.