The visual language of the Internet is constantly evolving and, much like spoken language, visual language has nuances, shorthand and a shifting lexicon. It contains a multitude of trends that are always influencing the way we present our websites, blogs, and posts in any given year. Visual trends are always fluctuating but they hold some real power when used correctly in time. Here are the biggest visual and graphic design trends to look out for in 2020.
Graphic Design For AR and VR Taking Off
While VR technology is growing, it’s nowhere near the level where one would call it a profitable venture. That said, the aesthetics of VR, and its sister technology AR, are becoming popular without the hassle of fancy equipment. From something as typical as Facebook posts to dedicated apps to an entire section of Youtube, panoramic content is out there for all who want it. This opens up a lot of distinct avenues for digital graphic design as it can be more than just a beautiful gimmick. Here are a few advantages:
- As a technology, panoramic videos and photos can provide a certain depth of field to the design of a webpage.
- Posts in such a format also give the user the ability to engage with the content and control how they want to view it.
- AR and VR tech accessibility display a forward-thinking sense of design that boosts your credibility.
- 360 views can capture far more of an event or scene and require less editing by their design.
Abstract & Surrealism are In
With the abundance of advertising and sales window placements all over the Internet, there is a definite fatigue setting in. People and marketing agencies are tired of generic visuals and product placement in those cheap, bland, straightforward boxes we see on every website. That’s where they are getting more imaginative with a presentation by bringing in abstract and surreal forms to complement their design.
New trends in graphic design are looking to upend the old way of doing things with flowing images that weave into their product’s style and form. The idea here is to tackle visceral emotions with sheer imagery and spectacle. Companies like Nike are jumping into this, as it is very instantly eye-catching. We’re expecting a lot more dreamier photos and we’ve been seeing Google already implement such design on their homepage graphics.
This is also making its way into how we represent data now. Finance and insurance companies are representing their digital data through swirls and polygons and shifting forms. This is becoming a kind of abstract futurism, where complex numbers and dull ideas are given a more pleasing aesthetic. It’s helping companies sell their ideas through emotion rather than looking like stuffy, boring offices where droids work tirelessly on spreadsheets.
This trend is definitely a reaction to the abundance of boring images that we see everywhere, and are numb to, at this point. On that same note, something similar is happening to our use of colour online…
Muted Colours, Gradients & Vivid Textures
Bright-lit colours have been the trend in digital design for the past few years, with an explosion of vivid, azure blues on all sorts of websites and magenta being particularly prominent in a lot of modern game designs (think Fortnite and several quirky indie titles). Now, however, we’re seeing the trend shift towards more muted colours. By all indications, brands are going to step away from those bright primary colours towards something a bit more subdued.
Colour gradients in backgrounds and in graphic design are another set of trends making their way through the Internet. These allow for an appealing transition between colours and can really build up pleasing colour contrasts.
Additionally, much like how VR is creating depth of field, more textured images and text with bevels and a 3D design may be gaining traction. These can be an interesting way to make your iconography and text stand out among other websites and companies. Accented text is also going to make a big wave in the next year. This style makes the text pop with colours, drawing the eye to it naturally.
With visual media literally as easy to make as holding out your phone, companies have to start pulling off some decent tricks to up their game. Simple images won’t cut it these days when everyone with an Instagram has high-power cameras and a range of filters at their disposal. Adding colours, textures, icons, text, and all sorts of visual flourishes to images is a fine way to go the extra mile and we expect it will take off with aplomb.
Adding such graphics can also build up some really good animations on top of static images. This is also a trend that may fit in with the growing rise in photo and video filters that add something extra to regular photos.
These are just some of graphic design trends we think will be a hit this year. There are a whole lot of other trends to make note of, so check out our related article: Social Media Predictions to Keep in Mind For 2020