What to watch for in the 2nd half of 2016.
Trends, by their very nature, are always changing—and design trends are no different.
Today’s progressive style can quickly become yesterday’s fad. How do you stay ahead of the curve? Here are some design trends to look out for in the remainder of 2016.
If it seems like well-drawn, 3-D-looking geometric shapes are everywhere in design this year, you’re very observant. Tapping into the hyper-modern, almost futuristic world that we live in, designers frequently are deploying geometric shapes. Why? What do these geometric shapes convey? Geometric shapes offer depth of field and unique perspectives to the viewer that suggest precision, order and an actively managed visual experience. In addition, geometric shapes are common and familiar elements to all ages and cultures, so the visual appeal translates well across audiences.
What’s old is new again—with an updated twist. Acting in accordance with the perceived modernity associated with geometric shapes, there has been an obvious shift toward representing items in a very blocky, simple way, which is being referred to as “modern retro.” You might call it, “simplify, simplify, simplify”—but there is more to it than that. Because the speed of life is constantly accelerating, the ability to convey a brand identity with simple elements that the eye and brain can process quickly is highly desirable. Hence, “modern retro” has appeal to designers because it offers something familiar and something new to work with in designing brand assets and communications.
Talk to any designer for five minutes about what they’d like to see more in design work and “negative space” will invariably come up in the conversation. In common parlance, it can be captured by the idea of, “less is more”—whether it’s an ad, a website or a corporate identity. Negative space follows along with geometric shapes and modern retro in the overall theme of trying to do more with less. Now, just because a design takes a minimalist approach, doesn’t mean there is “less work” that is being done. On the contrary, the attentive eye of a thoughtful designer results in a more finely-crafted piece—with no superfluous or distracting elements. Designs that use negative space are respected for their smart simplicity and efficiency.
Taken together, these trends are reminiscent of the old expression, “I would’ve written a shorter letter if I had more time.” That’s because design today is all about simpler, sleeker, better. It’s taking time-honored traditions and bringing them into the contemporary moment. Communicating more while showing less—that is the essence of effective design.
What trends are you watching for your business for the remainder of 2016?