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5 graphic design predictions for 2018

2018 is fast approaching and graphic designer, Emma, has been wondering what design might look like in 2018. Here are five design trends Emma thinks we’ll see more of throughout 2018.

Instagram seems to have taken on a huge number of users this year. More specifically business and new businesses. They are using the platform to sell their products in an unobtrusive and more subtle way. Instead of screaming and shouting ‘BUY THIS’ with the use of clever or not-so-clever adverts, they’re uploading beautiful product shots or scenes on Instagram and writing something personal underneath pointing to one simple link to their website in their bio. So it only seems right to look to Instagram and other online media for design inspiration and to keep up with what is trending.

2018 graphic design trend #1 – Handwriting/eat brush lettering

I’m increasingly seeing handwriting and brush lettering in graphic designs. For example, McDonalds’ McCafé recently rebranded complete with a new logo. It’s a hand-drawn typeface that makes the McDonald’s drinks feel like an actual café rather than a fast food outlet. No golden arches in sight. They team the logo up with a simple uppercase font to keep it looking modern and current. It’s simple but effective. We’ll definitely be seeing and using the handwriting/brush lettering style more in the near future.

2018 graphic design trend #2 – Hand-drawn illustrations

 This ties in to trend number 1. It seems trends are going back to the roots of design, using a pencil to create graphics. I’m seeing a lot of hand-drawn illustrations as well as hand-drawn fonts whether that’s in television advertising, printed graphics or graphics for web. Rather than sketching something out and creating a traced vector out of it, it seems designers are keeping the rough sketched look. This hand-drawn look is friendly and in a world full of hate everyone needs something friendly and fun. That’s why we’ll be seeing a lot of hand-drawn items in 2018. Dropbox is using hand-drawn style images across their website. They’ve kept it simple and are using outlines and only a few colours to keep it clear and clean.

2018 graphic design trend #3 – GIFs

GIFs will become more and more popular online through social platforms and on the web and in email. Short little bursts of video or moving images engage. GIFs draw attention with their moving and repeating nature. They’re certainly not a new things, but are sure to get any brand noticed, even if just for a short while. A lot of us probably use GIFs in day-to-day conversations on the likes of Facebook or Whatsapp as they add a bit of action and humour to a conversation. GIFs if used correctly can be very beneficial for your brand. This one is from Boden promoting a flash sale.

2018 graphic design trend #4 – Duotones

Duotone is the new black and white. A combo of two colours, they create a neutral background that can be perfect for large images on websites or print. They serve well for background images that intend to have text over the top, or to be used standalone they would create a wash of colour that reinforces your brand. We use duotone as an image style for Nautisk™ carrying it across brochures, web, video and email.

2018 graphic design trend #5 – Authentic photography

 This trend is something we hope will become a trend, so it’s sort of a false trend! We’re fed up with using stock images where a business could take actual real photos. Stock photos are getting increasingly difficult to use as more and more companies are choosing to use them – which means the pool of unused images is very, very limited. In order to create a strong brand presence you need unique images that are personal to your brand. No stock image will be able to compete against real-life images. It’s not authentic to use stock images which could mean your brand will suffer. Most camera phones have cameras that can produce high quality images, and with a little use of photoshop we can make your photos look highly professional. Or get us to do a professional shoot to really get some amazing photography for your brand. Using real photos creates a more human element and enables the viewer to get a real feel of what sort of brand you are. We use real-life photography for Tiverton High School and it makes a real difference to how people view the school.

Emma Fowle: Emma graduated with a degree in design and came to Oxygen straight from college in 2012. She is experienced in design for print and web.