One of the exciting things about the graphic design industry is that it’s so creatively diverse and constantly evolving. It can also be frustrating when trying to find a balance between personal artistic vision and the graphic design trends that are going to help clients to stand out and get more business through their visual branding.
To help inspire and find that perfect combination of creative and lucrative, here are 5 graphic design trends continuing to make headway in 2011 that look like they’ll be sticking around for awhile.
- Minimalistic and clean: Designers everywhere are taking the hint from Apple that this approach is working, and has been for several years.
- Illustrative or hand-drawn effects: An increasing number of companies are turning toward a more hand-drawn or hand-written look, finding beauty in the rustic imperfection of something handmade. Some prime industries making use of this trend include bohemian-style clothing companies like Anthropologie or handmade-focused websites like Etsy, and the trend can even be found in unexpected places like electronics advertisements by Casio.
- Print typography on the web: Many websites are now using resources like cufón to convert otherwise pixilated Web fonts into smooth, print-like fonts without the worry of browser font support. This has enabled web designers to use a wider variety of fonts in a more dynamic way, helping their web work to more closely mimic print work.
- Business Cards that Go Beyond: with the explosion of social networking on the Web, the seemingly humble business card is getting a jolt of creative attention to show that it still…well, means business! Creative approaches like die-cut cards, tear-off coupons, irregular sizes (like Moo.com’s popular mini-cards), cut-outs, pop-ups, stickers, plastic, recycled, you name it; anything is fair game for business card design.
- Social Media is everywhere: Twitter and Facebook iconography are nearly impossible to escape. The great news is that since these are so popular, there are button/widget/badge designs in virtually any style available to seamlessly incorporate in website design, or to even print onto that creatively quirky business card you’ve been working on!
Joe Lyons is the Creative Director at Spin350 Creative Inc, a Boston based design cluster that is an alternative to Boston ad agencies.