Design trends took an unexpected time out in 2020, and several of 2021’s trends listed below are pandemic holdovers. Some are past trends, their vintage status only growing more potent in their place among today’s design choices. In contrast, other trends on the list are staples, i.e., serif fonts reimagined to fit a bolder contemporary space.
Of course, bucking trends and relying on your individual preferences is entirely acceptable – even admirable. If you prefer to stick with the consensus of global designers and influencers, here is a list of three popular design styles trending in 2021.
Cartoons have always had a presence in brand marketing, but what makes this appealing and feel-good design style trend-worthy is when designers can capture the essence of current social events and translate that to today’s brands. Examples of highly successful companies using contemporary cartoon imagery include Google’s iconic homepage doodles and Starbucks stop motion videos.
NATURE & SUSTAINABILITY
With social and environmental issues at the forefront of the American conscience – thanks partly to the effects of global warming and a pandemic that held us hostage in our homes for months – designs that encourage eco-friendliness, sustainability, and a return to nature are trending. Technology brands like Logitech to a wide array of beverage companies and lifestyle brands currently use organic textures, neutral colors, botanicals, and recyclable materials in their visuals.
As 3D technology becomes more accessible than ever, 2D brand designers are discovering ways to incorporate 3D imagery to add depth, vibrancy and realism into their designs. From 3D typography to abstract composition, 3D elements can breathe new life into a brand’s image and messaging.
“Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future,” says designer and author Robert L. Peters. That’s deep, right? It’s also true and somewhat scary. As designers and influencers, we have a responsibility and obligation to put forth a positive vision of the world – not necessarily as we see it but how it could be.
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Author: Eden Landrie Editor: Jennifer Hart