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Graphic design trends of 2013

Less is definitely more for graphic design in 2013

The end of 2013 saw the launch of Windows 8 – and to much controversy and debate. Here at Oxygen the new Windows 8 Interface design is definitely growing on us. Say goodbye to drop shadows, gradients and lots of imagery and say hello to bright and bold colours, blocked shapes, iconography and grids. This interface is designed perfectly for the touch screen device. We think we could be seeing more and more design like this in the coming months in all varieties of medium.

To follow on from the ‘Less is more’ trend, back in September 2012, Ebay launched their new logo. Although it looks very similar to their old logo, it is Bold Bright and very simple. They’ve ditched the quirky 90s looking logo with all different sized fonts and brought in a much cleaner and simple typeface. They’ve also adopted a slightly new colour scheme to go with it, with brick red, cyan blue, dark yellow and olive green, which is a lot tamer then its predecessor’s neon colours that was in trend in the 90s. the new Ebay logo is a sort of flattened out version of the original logo.

Colour predictions – What’s Hot!

As previously said, bright and bold are key to 2013. Pantone’s colour of the year didn’t disappoint with this theory either. Emerald is Pantone’s colour of the year which is bright and most certainly bold. Below shows Spring colour trends for 2013; all these are definitely bright and bold, but also fresh and clean – perfect for spring.

Throughout the whole of 2013 we are definitely going to see a lot of bright and bold colours in design. Below shows our colour predictions for 2013.

 Vector illustrations

As design is going to become more simple and bold, vector illustrations will become more popular. Rather than using images or clip art designers will opt for iconography and concentrate on shapes. The use of iconography in web and print will be easier on the eye and more approachable nowadays as we’re now in the digital age, and everything is and needs to be simplified for digital use.

Going Digital

Most people now have smart phones and/or tablets that they carry with them everywhere. It’s becoming much easier to do everything on them. So unfortunately, whether we like it or not, printed items are going to become a luxury. Digital items are easier to access for people on the move so more and more companies will be aiming at getting their websites mobile and tablet friendly and may even be thinking about having company apps. People will be able to buy magazines, books, newspapers and much more on their devices, so we, as designers, need to think about how our designs will work online.

Items to treasure

The digital age won’t see an ending to printed items just yet – but luxury is key. The printed items have to compete with the digital age somehow!  Textured papers and printed effects will be the key to its success and they will be items people will want to keep forever. High-end and high quality printing is a definite trend for 2013.



One page websites

So, back to that all-important digital age again! To make it even easier for your website to be viewed online, on tablets and on smart phones have you ever thought about a simple one page website!? Probably not! This is where anchored links may come in very useful. You can still have a menu bar and all the information you need, it will just be on one long page. The links will simply anchor to the specified part of the page. This will call for some very interesting design and content but would look amazing and fit in very well with the digital age.

Large photographs

Large photographs are very much in trend at the moment – they have to be eye-catching though! Large photographs on websites and in print can make the perfect backdrop to your design. Coloured contract boxes and text overlaying images can look very classy, all depending on the images chosen of course. Large photography used in design always stands out from the crowd.

Transparency layers

Lots of colourful, contrasting boxes of different opacities will be right on trend this year. This will give design a sort of retro feel but retro is back! You can do anything with the coloured shapes – put images in them, put text in them or simply leave them as just shapes. They will look beautiful and bang on trend no matter what!

Hand drawn typography

Hand drawn typography is the perfect way to stay unique – let’s face it, what’s more unique then your own handwriting! Hand written typography looks excellent as headings and titles and goes perfectly with all the other trends of 2013. The different shapes and sizes of letters is instantly more interesting then your bog standard typefaces. We can create hand-written fonts for you – just ask.

Let us know what you think to our trend predictions. And don’t hesitate to contact us to get some bang on trend and high quality design put to your brand.

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.