The start of a new new decade – a time to be inspired, progressive, and look to the future. There are new and exciting trends surfacing, but there’s a pervading need for authenticity and clarity. 

Three main themes are coming through: Play. Adapt. Move. 

Be playful. Experiment. Don’t settle for the flat and static – this is where I see graphic design heading in 2020. Adding new dimensions, life and vibrancy to any application is the way to go. It’s very exciting and I can’t wait to try new things. 

So here are my top 10 graphic design trends to look out for in 2020. 

Playful type.

Typesetting is an art form in itself, but now is the time to have some fun.
Play with form, colour, grids, breaking out of grids, interlocking, intersecting, stretched, squashed and distorted. Being playful gives your design work character and your typography personality that will set itself apart. 

Playful text at different levels and angles

See through.

Text over large wave background

Transparency. It’s what we all are looking for these days, the authenticity and honesty to show what something is truly made up of. And this goes for design as well – add intrigue and dimension to work by hinting or revealing what is underneath.

With multiplied image layers, see-through stocks or packaging design that shows off the product itself. Honesty is always the best policy, so show people what you are made of and go transparent. 

Grunge.

Street art inspired, distressed textures and type that shouts. There is nothing discreet about this trend. Following on from the rebellious trend of last year, grunge rips up the rule book – and stamps all over it.

So if you want to shout a little louder this year, go grunge.

Grunge text written over a grunge background

Get in motion.

Motion is BIG this year. Everything from micro-interactions to continuous animation sequences. It catches the eye, adding another level of dimension and dynamism. 

Life isn’t standing still and neither should your designs. Get moving. 

Cyber colours.

Vivid, luminous and IN YOUR FACE. 

It’s not for every project, but, when appropriate, it cuts-through and pops off the page. Fearless neons that pack-a-punch. Futuristic vibrancy. Metallic textures. The future is bright and is right here! 

Bright magenta cyber colours text over black and white background

Mono and Duo.

Blue duotone image of a pineapple

Make a statement with mono and duo image treatments. Mono or duo-toning images is where you only use one or two colours to make up an image. It’s made a big comeback and adds a sense of class and style to any application, and it adaptable to reinforce brand styles across various collateral.

Multi your media.

Mix things up with different mediums and forms. Such as photography with illustrations, traditional with contemporary, simple with complex. 

Using more than one medium or style makes your designs more individual, stand-out and distinguished. This experimentation can help build your brand style or set a piece of design apart from the standard.

Multi your media illustration

Behind the mask.

Photography of forest within large bold M character

Nothing to do with superheroes, but following on from the see-through trend. Seeing what is underneath and being transparent has taken off. Masking is basically using a shape to contain another shape. You can incorporate two visuals into one, which can make a real statement to your design work.

Fluid Flow.

Fluidity is a new trend for this year. Adaptability, a quality to design work that can help it transfer to many types of application. But more literally, water and liquid textures and patterns, maybe making a big appearance next year. They feel organic in nature, as well as versatile.

Go with the flow and add some fluidity to your work.

Fluid text over blue mixing liquids

Bevel and chisels.

Geometric outline of B character

The effect that used to send shivers down any designer’s spine. Embrace 3D and make your logos, design and layouts stand out from the page. Be careful, it needs to look classy and intentional. Not fake and unjustified.  

No bend and snaps this year – bevel and chisel. 

Inspiration, not instruction.

Trends are there as inspiration and not as gospel. It’s a message I repeat ever year. We should answer creative challenges on an individual basis and what is right for you and the brief. As designers we need to be confident in our ability to not follow trends, but make them.

If you want to be progressive with your design in 2020 to ensure hitting your business objectives, get in contact.

You can call us on 01603 622766, email hello@creativesponge.co.uk, or open the instant chat window icon in the right-hand bottom corner of the screen.