2018 Design Trends Guide
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As our last two Design Trends Guides were read by more than 1million people and translated in Russian and Chinese, we’ve put together another amazing Trend Guide for the year to come.

2017 was a bold year in design, with vibrant colors, daring typography, amazing motion graphics, with brave tones “moving away from edgy startups into the mainstream” Ragged Edge . This amazing year left us with a lot of inspiring design that can be seen across all areas of branding, digital design and motion graphics. With big brands switching their brand identity to a fresh and modern approach, all media will follow, using the potential of vivid colors to increase their conversion rates.
With so many bold trends coming out this year, it’s time to release your creativity, so let’s reveal the best trends in graphic design that will be absolute hits in 2018.
01.

 

Brave, Vibrant Colors

In 2017 we saw a surge in bold and brave colors and this trend is here to stay, making it one of the most important trends this year and probably in 2019 as well. With Ultraviolet taking over Millennial Pink, we will see some eye catching combinations, with intense colors creating some psychedelic designs.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
02.

 

Color of the Year 2018 (Pantone)

This year Pantone choose a few bright colors with Ultra Violet as a star color. All shades of lavender, violet and other purples will be very popular as well. Ultra Violet is a “blue-based purple that takes our awareness and potential to a higher level” and we just love it!
Big brands have already started to use violet for their brand identities.  
Beside Ultra Violet, the colors that we personally love for this year are: Cherry tomato, Meadowlark, Lime Punch, Arcadia. 
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
03.


Gradients (Color transitions)

Gradient Color Transitions are a trend from 2017 but this year they will be bolder and bigger.  Overlapping shapes or just a simple background can be a perfect choice for your project. In the last few months, gradients are popping up in all designs areas, from branding to packaging.
Gradient backgrounds, duotones gradients, multi-colors gradients, image overlays with gradients, subtle lines or stokes, in typography and logos or combined with flat elements – pick your favorite and go for it!
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
04.

 

Semi-flat design

If you are a fan of clean and minimal design, then the semi-flat design is perfectly suited for you. Add more dimension to your project using subtle shadows to create depth, maybe some gradients or vibrant colors. The result will make your design more eye-catching and memorable.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
05.

 

Geometric elements

Using geometric elements in design such as polygons (triangles, squares, and pentagons) or other shapes like curves such as the circle or the ellipse, can make your project unforgettable.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
06.

 

Duotones

Duotones are predicted to be one of the hottest trends in 2018. This is not a new technique in design, it actually exists for a few decades now, but Spotify has been credited to bringing it back to the mainstream. You can mix bold colors to create an unforgivable piece of design.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
07.

 

Brutalism

Brutalism is a rough concept that definitely grabs attention. Brutalism emerged in design in the 50’s and was used mainly on posters (it first appear as a trend in in 40’s in architecture), but now this raw concept it’s back and you will encounter it in all design fields. It is meant to shock the audience with its uncomfortable approach, clunky typography and unsubtle design techniques.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
08.

 

Generative Design

Generative design is present for a few years in identity design and we will see it all around 2018 as well.Combining colors and shapes this approach can create some unique design identity and bring the necessary recognition for a brand.
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
09.

 

Custom Illustrations

Hand drawn illustrations or just simple elements, give a personal touch to a branding. Hand drawn elements don’t need to be polished, they can be rough shapes that add realness to the project.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

10.

 

Illustrations mixed with photography

An eclectic trend for 2018 is combining custom illustrations with photography. This technique gives a unique and very modern look to any project. Adding hand drawn elements to plain photography can make any photo stand out, even if you use it on fashion photography, conceptual or posters.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
11.

 

Patterns

Geometric patterns inspired from the 80’s and 90’s are back! Inspired by music posters, art, movies and fashion all from the 80’s this patterns will rock the design world this year. Bold colors are a must in this trend.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
12.

 

Smooth animations and GIF’s

From websites, logos, presentation videos for products or services, motion graphic is everywhere. A great trend in motion graphics are the seamless transitions, that can make people better understand your product. Motion graphic is present in typography as well, from a bold statement on a slider to an animated logo.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
13.

 

Genuine and real Photography

Stock photography is influenced by trends as well. This year real, honest photography will rule. As many big brands started using unique captures, with movement and surprise elements, the photos will we more genuine, like a snapshot, with a relaxed and authentic approach.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
14.

 

Architectural Inspiration

The minimalism of modern architecture is inspiring the world of design as well. The geometric abstraction, with sharp edges and straight angles can be found in design projects such as websites, posters or identity design.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
15.

 

Mix of 2D and 3D

Creating 3d objects and place them in 2d projects is really hot right now. This mix creates some unique visual aesthetic by combining depth with flatness.  This technique can be used on various design fields from logos, to websites or presentation videos. The end result is a complex visual presentation that will certainly be remembered.

 2018 Design Trends Guide

16.

 

One Color

This past few months we’ve seen many one color designs, with the same background color as the product presented or the typography shown and using shadows or 3d effects to create volume.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
17.

 

Doodles (hand drawn illustrations)

Hand drawn illustrations or just simple elements, give a personal touch to a branding. Hand drawn elements don’t need to be polished, they can be rough shapes that add realness to the project.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
18.

 

Styles crossing and merging

From illustration combined with photography, typography with photos, Gradients with bold typo, duotones with bright colors, combine 2, 3 or even more 2018 trends to get an eclectic and memorable design.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
Logo Design

 

19.

 

Responsive Logos

In a responsive world adapting your logo to any device is vital. A truly responsive logo doesn’t just shrink on a page/device, it needs a subtle adaptation and to be flexible to the context is been showed on.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
20.

 

Animated Logos

Animated logos have been around for a while, but recently they are popping up in almost any presentation. An animated logo can depict a brand’s story and have a better conversion rate as it’s memorable.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
21.

 

Colorful & Fun Logos

Colorful logos with funny elements, animations and custom illustrations are a big trend this year. Most brands want to send a positive message to the customers so a fun approach is the way to go.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
22.

 

Negative space

Negative space is still a hot pick logo design. We’ve seen a lot of this trend in the latest years but it’s still rocking hard the design world. In the last years designers used negative space for a minimalistic feeling but the novelty this year is that the white space is field with bold colors and geometric patterns and elements.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
23.

 

Monograms

Monograms will never fade in logo design. They are a way to create stability, emanate quality and tradition in a brand. Monograms can also be created using a more modern approach by mixing some modern trends from this year as the bright colors, duotones or geometric patterns.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
24.

 

Geometric shapes & patterns

Adding a custom made subtle pattern to a logo can make a bold statement about the brand. The minimal geometric shapes can bring versatility and originality to a logo, so we will definitely see more of them in 2018.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
25.

 

Gradients

As you probably already know gradients are one of the biggest trends inherited from 2016-2017 and, of course, this trend will be present in logo design as well.  Subtle touches of gradients or bold statements transitions, which one do you prefer?

 2018 Design Trends Guide
26.

 

Overlaps

With the duotone trend rising this year, overlapping elements are really hot in logo design.  Take a look at our picks.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
Packaging Design

 

27.

 

Flat Design

Flat design is still the it choice to make when it comes to packaging design. Flat shapes, patterns or custom illustrations is the way to go in 2018.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
28.

 

Minimal Design

Over-Crowded design is a thing of the past, as a result all the non-essential information must go and make room for the relevant ones. This trend uses a lot of negative space so the consumer will only interact with the necessary info.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
29.

 

Patterns & Shapes

Geometric

We will encounter geometric shapes in all design branches. Choose a geometric pattern that fits your product and go for it!
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

Custom shapes and elements

Custom made design is mandatory for a unique brand identity.
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

Doodles

Doodles are a fresh trend this year in all design fields and identity design is perfect to create this brave patterns. Onto a package, doodle can transform a plain and dull design into a fun, unique piece of art.
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

Vintage

Vintage patterns are still in even if they are around for a few years now. Vintage design can relate to a certain level of quality, with tradition in mind. Vintage design is based on details and can create a long lasting brand identity.
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

30.

 

Bold Typography

Bold typography sends a strong and clear message. If you like your product to stand out, use a big typo and combine it with a bold color.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

31.

 

The Colors

Bold Colors

Bold colors are the stars this year so we will found them in packaging design as well. Combined with crazy patterns and geometric shapes, brave colors can add a fresh feeling to any product.
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

Pastel Colors

Pastel colors are a response to the bold color trend that is taking more and more space into packaging as well. The soft tones are a great choice if you want to transmit a warm message to the customers..
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

32.

 

Unusual materials & shapes

From transparent to metal, anything is allowed in packaging design. With so many products on the shelf, a truly innovative package needs to stand out and be remembered. The use of unusual materials to create modern, forward looking products is a must for a designer.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
33.

 

Holographic effects

The holographic effect is an old trend that is emerging again in this time period. The metallic materials used give a futuristic effect and can create a magic, eye catching design.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
34.

 

Gradients in packaging

As we already stated this is one of the biggest trends this year as well and it can be found plenty in packaging design. Add soft gradients to create depth or use vibrant colors for a bold statement.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
Web design (Ui/Ux)

 

35.

 

Mobile First

It’s no news that mobile browsing surpassed desktop. With dynamic icons, menus, submenus, all designers take mobile into consideration.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

36.

 

Broken grid layouts

Some designers feel constrained by the classic grid so they try to break the rules and set free their creativity. With images and text overlapping and converging breaking the grid can create some unique, experimental designs.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
37.

 

Integrated animations

The use of animations is a great tool for your users to know the brand’s story, it’s interactive and fun and they are creating a unique experience for the visitors. Animations can be integrated to work with page transitions.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
38.

 

Custom Illustrations

In 2018 we will continue to see an all new rise of illustrations in web design.  With big brands using custom illustrations into their re-branding, this trend will spread really fast. Digital and traditional artists can make custom illustrations that are well tailored to suit any business and address their target customers.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
39.

 

Round corners & fluid shapes

In the last few years, web design was dominated by right angles and sharped edged geometric shapes. For the last few months the rounded curves and fluid shapes have been taking over. Combined with fresh colors and overlays this trend is here to stay.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
40.

 

Parallax scrolling

Parallax scrolling has become so mainstream that you cannot deny it’s popularity. With scrolling dictating the animations speed, your imagination is the limit.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
Typography

 

41.

 

3D Modeling

3d is a powerful trend taking over all design fields. 3D rendered typography can bring a real life effect to your composition.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide

42.

 

Bold Typography

Bold typography was a big trend in the last years and it’s definitely here to stay. In 2018 we will see much bolder typography combined with bright colors. So remember, if you want to make a strong statement, bold typography is the way to go.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
43.

 

Serif Fonts

In the last years, typography was dominated sans serif fonts but in the last few months we’ve seen serif fonts making a comeback. Here are a few interesting projects that choose to use serif fonts and did an amazing job.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
44.

 

Geometric Type

Geometric fonts were really relevant in the last years and will continue to be an important trend in 2018 as well. Geometric fonts can bring unicity and a futuristic feeling to any project.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
45.

 

Custom Fonts

Custom fonts require time and money but the result is unique, easy to spot and remember. If what you are searching for is individuality and unicity, then a custom typeface can highlight that.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
46.

 

Bold alignment and kerning

Chaotic typography was one of the main trends for 2017 and it’s still ruling in 2018. Forget about the grid and let your creativity run free!

 2018 Design Trends Guide
47.

 

Experimental Typography

A designer should experiment with fonts and typeface and come up with cutting age results. Mixing pre-made fonts with negative space or custom elements, the results can be amazing.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
48.

 

Typography with real life elements

Eclectic trends are always hot and we just love this one. Integrate bold typography in real photography or 3d renders for some avant-garde outcomes.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
3D Renders

 

49.

 

Abstract shapes

3d abstract shapes combined with bold colors is a winner mix this year. This is definitely one of the most influential trend this year so keep an eye on it.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
50.

 

Metallic 3D renders

The metallic 3d renders are truly glamorous and it’s definitely a trend worth watching in 2018.

 2018 Design Trends Guide
 2018 Design Trends Guide
51.

 

Motion 3D graphics

As animations conquers the design world, 3d motion graphics is definitely something worth watching this year. Combined with audio this kind of animations will rule multimedia projects. Using visual effects and other cinematic techniques, the motion designer can bring life to 3d characters and typography to better understand the product’s identity.

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