The present and the future runs on trends. Much like fast fashion, design and illustration trends and styles have a life cycle as hungry creatives go through them like starved piranhas. Or Instagram influencers. It’s all connected, in a wild, fast-paced way. Someone famous with a large follower count just needs to upload a photo of them wearing something like a glitter feather boa. And, bam! The next thing you know, nine out of ten people on the street are toting a shiny, fluffy boa. Or, you know, full body leather outfits. Those probably never go out of style. You would, however, need to moisturize a lot.
Think of hungry creatives as thirsty, dry skin – flaky and in need of a soothing fix – and trends as moisturizing lotion. They go hand in hand. Thirsty for trends?
Explore our 2019 Design And Illustration Trends Forecast
The AI Infusion
The future centers around AI, as we’ve been seeing on TV, experiencing in stores, and even through phone apps. We’re elbow-deep in immersive, ever-evolving, always advancing toward something new. Brands are leaning into AI to better market their products to consumers, constantly snapping fingers for our attention. 2019 will see plenty of AI-infused designs, from product and packaging design to web coding and even interior design. Think Tesla’s self-driving cars to Amazon removing the hassles of home deliveries with their consumer-oriented tech. Feel like you’re not really an AI-user? Think again – that navigation app (hey, Google Maps!) on your phone that gets you places is powered by AI technology.
The Time Has Come To Bridge That Gender Divide
Flowing from gender disparities to social stereotypes – brands all over the globe are strategizing to unite everyone. Pink for girls and blue for boys? Leave that mindset behind; we’re waving goodbye to traditional gender labels. Unbuckle that need to conform. Gender fluidity is thriving. People with they/them pronouns? They’re about to change the world. Talk about a major culture shift that will be one of the defining moments of the century. From photography, genderfluid fashion lines, product design, architectural spaces to gender-neutral restrooms, universal design concepts are entering the creative sphere. We’re definitely interested to see how this will evolve throughout 2019.
3D Slips Into The Mainstream
3D has been around for a long time, but marketers have yet to fully harness this technology for their niches. Major brands like Nike and Reebok have been incorporating 3D creations into their apparel and footwear designs, revolutionizing sneaker manufacturing. Companies don’t need to go through the hassle of production as much as they used to with everything being digitized. The rise of 3D printing definitely contributes to lessening lead and production times. The growth of tech has only made things much more accessible and easier to obtain. With the help of 3D tech, consumers have a much easier time making purchasing decisions online, too.
As brands use 3D to allow customers to explore products and services in a virtual environment and experience the product before they buy, they are improving the online purchase journey, shortening the buying cycle and inspiring greater confidence in the purchasing decision. The benefit for the brand and customer is overall greater customer satisfaction. —Forbes
Who’s to say other brands won’t be following suit, eager to begin breaking ground in their own industries?
Enter Bold Typography
As one of 2019’s design and illustration trends, type has always been an accompanying visual forefront of everything that we see when it comes to design. You know, big name brands smearing their logos across store windows, products, and their apparel lines. Look at creative ways typography is incorporated into a brand’s strategy. They spark emotion – whether it’s motivation to work out or tempt your tastebuds when you’re not even hungry. Think McDonald’s and Nike, who sometimes don’t even need to use their logo – instead allowing their taglines to do the work.
On the color font side of the spectrum, this is a growing trend with a pulse we’re keeping a finger on. Get creative using fonts with brush effects, shade variants and decorative elements built-in to grab attention on an otherwise plain design.
Hang Tight With The Hand-drawn
While computer graphic art has always been in, traditionally created illustrations are going to be paired with a digitized twist. Think more hand-drawn text and vector art, whether it’s created in the papercut style or drawn over photos. The world is growing tired of tensions faced by consumers. In this era demanding truth and transparency, we find ourselves leaning more toward hand-created art for a pump of originality. Something that shows that little slice of someone’s true personality. There’s only so much unique individuality you can portray through a screen before someone copies the dickens out of it.
Go Big With Mixed Patterns And Prints
Milan – February 22, 2018: Milan fashion week woman fall/winter 2018/19 in Milan, Italy
Imagine different types of animal prints paired together. They actually make a harmonious blend somehow. Curious, right? We know, they aren’t a new thing, but they’re making a comeback. A blend of patterned florals, checks, and retro designs will also be on the rise, so keep a lookout for them. Fashion lines aren’t the only ones adopting the mixed pattern trend. Even in the simplest places such as phone covers, your notebook design or the pattern of your new t-shirt.
And while these design styles aren’t exactly new, we’re psyched to see how they will evolve in the near future:
Clean and featuring an array of vibrant and exciting colors, the photography trend that focuses on new minimalism uses continuous lines, neon circles, and forms which blend the very best of some new trends plus some minimalist aspects. Who doesn’t want less clutter and more time to get their brand’s message across?
Minimalism is revolving around “white textures” this year, featuring patterns that range from nature-inspired to complex 3D designs, predominantly white or light toned.
3D Styles With Modern, Vibrant Hues
Need we say more? Colors have always played a big part in design. Their function is to bring your eyeballs to a specific part of a design or add some life into your illustration. In line with the bright and bold color trend, designers will turn to incorporating more 3D design into the blender. Color blocking with 3D-infused styles are sure to merge into a seamless unity, whether for UI/UX or product and packaging design.
Adding gradients or color transitions into the design blend is one of the things that we predict will keep going in 2019.
Have you ever received a sweet business card with a swanky gold swoosh or accent on a plain black background? Ooh, fancy. Metallic hues are everywhere from fashion to graphic design. This embellished accent works best with neutral colors to bring out a punch of class and up the ante for otherwise dull hues.
Crisp, Contemporary Cinemagraphs
Yes to GIFs and selected parts of images in motion. You may have been seeing them everywhere – websites, blogs, even corporate pages. Are they gaining popularity? Absolutely. While they aren’t a new thing, they’re here to stay and possibly evolve into something more. So are micro-animations! You know, those little animations that add more life into an otherwise static page or site. We’re looking forward to what the future of cinemagraphs and micro-animations hold.
Peeping Into The Font Playground
Replacing letters with vector or hand-drawn elements in design were popular then, and they’re continuously gaining popularity now, too. We’re keeping an eye on this design style to see what interesting trend they’d evolve into. Color fonts have also been the rise, and it’ll be good to see what designers create with this growing trend.