Nothing in life stays the same. Once you think you know up from down or left to right, things seemingly switch up on you again. This is the case from everything to fashion to emoji use-cases (we’re talking to you, GenZ). Digital design trends are no different. When the very first websites hit, most were created with gaudy fonts, gray drab backgrounds, and mishmash color schemes.
As technology moved ahead, so did the design elements, bringing in flash animations, rotating banners, and even embedded videos. All of these were, at one point, trends that were either adopted and refined or abandoned completely. Moving into the 2000s hyperrealism made its way into the digital landscape as companies looked for ways to showcase their goods and stand out. Today we’re back to basics in a minimalistic phase where everything from logos to web templates seem to be a flat representation or a breakdown of the past - for example, the USA Today logo.
Art changes in waves from the Renaissance to the digital renaissance and while some may fear change, when it comes to design we’re always looking for the next big thing.
Here are some upcoming trends our creative team at Alipes is expecting and experimenting with as we move forward into 2022.
Expect to See More Extravagant Illustrations
As we pull into the last quarter of 2021, we’ve already seen a shift from the use of photography to the world of illustration. Something about these seems friendly, familiar, but at the same time a complete departure from traditional marketing tactics, and it seems to be working. According to Vengage, a browser-based illustration and infographics platform, 40% of polled marketers cited that illustrations helped capture leads and meet overall business sales objectives in 2020. As more and more marketers find that illustrations are hitting the marketing mark, expect to see more grandiose creations and even micro animations that delight and capture attention.
Body Positivity Will be Embraced by More Brands
As the world seemingly paused during COVID-19, people had more time to reflect and react to social issues around the world that once were hidden or overlooked. One of these issues was the portrayal of models in advertisements, the use of filters in social media, and the demise of self-esteem in waves due to these factors. As we move forward, we will see more and more brands cutting down on photoshop and using more body-positive and authentic imagery. Some brands like Aerie, an intimate apparel and lifestyle retailer and sub-brand owned by American Eagle Outfitters, are ahead of the realistic curve by denouncing the use of photoshop in their promotional images nearly four years ago. There is always an opposite reaction to an extreme, and with over 300 possible filters on Snapchat and Instagram including ones that can even alter bodies in motion, we expect to see pushback on this as retailers take a much-needed step into reality.
Typeface Logos Will Make a Comeback
While some things may be getting more extravagant in the world of design, we expect to see a pullback, even more, when it comes to logos. Minimalist logos work to be more quickly recognizable and train the brain by association. In 2022, we expect to see less geometry in logos and more clean, crisp, and bold use of typefaces as fashion and design seems to be a big nod to the 90’s nostalgia in the coming year.
While 2020 was all about mixing unique and complementary colors and bold statements, we expect to see a pullback to the use of pastels and “glass” transparencies in 2022. After the harsh year we’ve all had, perhaps designers are doing what they can to soothe the soul by incorporating these calming, cool, and almost child-like tones into their design concepts. Like a breath of fresh air, we welcome these into our color palette choices.
Just as 2021 brought the unexpected, we can expect 2022 to bring in some chaos in terms of design. Don’t look for the typical left to right grid layouts as much this coming year, especially as brands try to stand out from a (hopefully) post-COVID world. As you expect the unexpected in design, we’ll see hero images in unique locations, text blocks askew, overlaid images that seemingly clash at first glance, and surprise interactions with potential customers. As brands look to move away from a COVID-centric year they’ll be looking for ways to refresh and recapture audiences in an almost no-holds-barred wild west of design tactics.
We’re looking forward to working with brands that want to reconnect with their audience in new and exciting ways, or just refresh their look for the upcoming year. With decades of experience and a deep understanding of the history of design, we’re able to take a look at the past and move forward with confidence.
Here are some of our staff-approved resources that will help you identify more upcoming trends and better figure out what will resonate with your brand and design needs!