As Summer draws to a close (sigh) we’ve taken a look back and picked out some of the emerging and growing trends in graphic design this year. Let’s jump straight in!

  1. Colour & Form – Muted & Organic

Following Pantone heralding Classic Blue as the colour of the year, we’ve seen designers and brands alike swapping out the trendy pop of a bright accent colour for more muted and earthy tones.

Influences from the natural world have also been echoed through the use of textured, fluid and organic forms that evoke a sense of neutrality and calm. Both interesting developments as we seek comfort and protection from the loud warnings in today’s environment.

Sources: Kakao Chocolate, Seedlip, Fontana delle Selve, Cuppa
  1. Layout – Layers & Space

The practice of overlapping and offsetting both type and image surrounded by an abundance of white space has proved more popular than ever in 2020.

Clean yet choppy designs have taken precedence over full-width layouts to break up content and demand the viewer’s attention. This might sound haphazard but this style is one of the hardest to execute beautifully.

Sources: Babylonstoren, 6 o’clock gin, Kate, Volkhouse
  1. Illustration – 3D & Isometric

In contrast to the influx of flat illustrations and artworks, 3D forms and isometry have come into their own this year. Designers have experimented with ever-evolving software to create depth more realistically through shadows, reflections, gradients, textures and more (albeit keeping the disproportionate body shapes).

Isometric formations remain a firm choice when mapping user journeys because of their capability to illustrate a 3D object on a 2D surface in an engaging and informative way – some coming together to create miniature digital landscapes.

Sources: Isotype, Samsung-Calendario, Creatio
  1. Typography – Kinetic & Script

Designers are constantly playing with typography in a bid to create more innovative and modern compositions. Moving the maxi-type trend forwards, 3D objects are a hit with words – taking the form of cubes, stairs, spheres and impossible shapes that are then brought to life through looping animations.

Brush script fonts have also been on the rise as their personable and conversational qualities lend themselves to storytelling. Both styles provide alternatives to the monotony of the minimal, geometric sans-serifs that have been dominant for so long.

Sources: Supertrash, Printworks London, Painted words II, Echo Falls Wine
  1. Focus – Sustainability

This year our client’s dedication to working towards a greener future has been impressive. Made for Drink turned their plastic-free packaging mission into a reality while Accolade Wines announced that its core branded portfolio has been certified 100% carbon neutral this month. The challenge has been to visually showcase these eco-triumphs while retaining the power of the original identity.

Sources: Ryman Eco, Made for Drink, Accolade Wines

So there’s some insight on 2020. Watch out for a follow up on what we dare to predict 2021 has to offer!

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