Surely, good design is good design regardless of how it can be categorized? To an extent, this is true, but with each passing year, the design industry welcomes in a new set of trends and themes while bidding a fond farewell to whatever came before. While trends often leave a legacy behind which evolves into something ‘new,’ it’s essential for designers to keep their finger on the pulse of what’s current in order to stay ahead of their competitors and keep their brands on top. Then, once you’ve mastered the trends of today, you need to have your eye on what’s coming tomorrow.
Vibrant Colors, Duotones and Gradients
It seems that subtle hues and the ‘less is more’ approach to design is on its way out and is being usurped by a much bolder approach to colorization. Vibrant, eye-catching colors with an uncluttered design look fantastic on the HD screens on smart devices that so many people are using today. Often, these bold colors are being used in minimalist combinations of just two contrasting colors for maximum effect with Photoshop tools like gradient fill for adding depth to the background depth as well as duotones.
For a visual summary of the top design trends of 2019, take a look at this great Instagram post on 2019 design trends.
Realistic 3D Design Elements
For several years design has been flat, but now it appears that 3D imagery, font, and design elements are bringing new life to the industry. 3D elements and font can be used alongside flat design for greater impact, which also provides a futuristic edge (another theme repeatedly emerging in 2019).
Motion Graphics and Animation
The number of people with high-speed internet connections is increasing all the time, which has led to an upturn in the use of animations and motion graphics or GIFs. Whether it’s a short movement which is repeated or a longer sequence, animations are a fantastic way to enrich a user’s experience and capture their imagination.
Visualization with a Story
In the modern world, people are searching for authenticity and clarity, which is part of the reason why custom, hand-drawn illustrations which show imperfections, 3D characters and avatars and more authentic photos (not glossy stock images) are taking the lead. When the images you use are unique to the brand, they tell a ‘real’ story and show that you are unique.
There’s been a big shift towards bold and eye-catching fonts which convey strength and confidence, including 3D typefaces which jump off the screen or page. Using text as your focal point rather than an image or logo will grab the attention and encourage greater engagement.
Framed designs are being pushed to the side in favor of more open compositions which give the user a full-screen experience. In many cases, the design goes beyond the edge of the screen as animated elements fly off and on the page smoothly, suggesting that the page continues and that we’re missing something. By igniting the user’s imagination, you can suggest that there is more to see and peak their interest even further.
Virtual and Augmented Reality
Virtual and augmented reality made its debut in 2018, but in 2019 it is becoming more and more mainstream as websites invite users to explore ‘beyond the screen.’ Virtual reality can be used to show the user around a property or a hotel or even a dressing room where they can see clothes in 3D.