At the end of 2022 we began to see the rise of AI in the creative world, so how will that impact the trends of 2023 and how business owners create graphics for their brand and social media?
I think we are going to see things go in 2 directions. The embracing of AI and more AI generated graphics and illustration/art. And a rebellion against the machine with more 'analog' design, including hand drawn elements, textures, grain, mixed media and a feeling of nostalgia.
Something you might notice with the examples below is often graphics will mix a few of these trends as well. A lot of these trends are flexible, so you can make them your own and adapt them to your own brand style.
So let's look at the graphic design trends for 2023.
NEW TECH TRENDS
1. AI art and illustration
AI creative has really started to break into the consumer market. It is now easily accessible and more people are experimenting with it. Now it's not perfect and it can't read your mind to create exactly what you have in mind, but it is more an experimental form of image making and I think more people will be playing with it and finding ways to incorporate it into their designs. It could be to generate an image that illustrates something you are talking about, especially if you can't find the right image among exisiting images, or to create an interesting image to create a more artistic unusual design.
2. 3D Design
Another area of technology that is becoming more popular is 3D design. It's a great way to add depth and interest to a design. It's a futuristic high tech aesthetic that feels new and unique. It adds extra depth to a design and has an element of awe to it, as it isn't something most people know how to create.
As the world of video grows, and video and animation tools become more accessible I think we will also see more animation and motion in designs. Including animated logos, graphics with a bit of motion added and just adding more movement into designs.
4. Inclusive design + visuals
As more people from more diverse backgrounds come online and as awareness around different needs grows. This means more people are considering how to make graphics more inclusive and accessible being aware of things like legibility, contrast and adding captions and warnings. We are also seeing it is illustrations and visuals used, showing a more diverse range of people represented in illustrations
5. Neu Brutalism
Neu Brutalism is an unadorned, raw aesthetic and a focus on functionality over form. This style often features bold, geometric shapes, flat colors, and a limited palette of typefaces and other design elements. It comes from an architectural style from the 50s-70s that is characterized by a focus on raw, unfinished concrete surfaces, geometric forms, and a sense of ruggedness and strength. In graphic design its roots are in the early days of the internet when there was a lot of design limitation and little colour.
In a rebellion against AI and fast moving tech changes, there is a return to more analog hand made design style like collage. It feels more handmade, crafted and a way of sharing a mix of thoughts and ideas. It's a great way to create imagery for more complex ideas or to put a variety of images together in one graphic (great for product businesses).
7. Font Mixing and Creative Fonts
There is a lot more typographic experimentation happening. It feels more human, as it is more creative and breaks rules. I think as AI becomes more common, we will also see more design that breaks the rules and proves it's humanness. These typographic styles including mixing two different fonts within a word as well as text distortion and more playful type use.
8. Analog design
There is an overall general trend of analog design. Design that looks like it was hand created rather than on a computer, the use of paper backgrounds, the look of something being scanned or embossing. As technology moves fast there also tends to be a hanging on to the past for a feeling of comfort and nostalgia.
9. Grainy film look photography
Along with the analog design we have grainy film look photography. It feels nostalgic and calming. It also adds texture and an element of imperfection. This can be adding grain or dust overlays onto images as well as using filters and presets to give photos a more aged analog feel.
10. Photo layering
This is a trend I am mostly seeing in social media graphics, the use of photography as a background rather than just plain coloured or textured backgrounds. This includes the layering of photos, so having a photo and then another photo as the background. This creates a rich layered feel.
We are seeing texture in many forms becoming popular. Texture can give a nostalgic feel but also makes a design more unique and dynamic. It also gives that analog feel with textures like paper, paint, scanned textures and drawings.
Bright happy colours - With people looking to feel better after the roughness of the last few years, happy bright colours are on the rise. Bright colours make graphics feel joyful and full of life.
Credit: Dominican Star
Pantone Colour of the year - This years Pantone Colour of the year Viva Magenta. According to Pantone "Viva Magenta is brave and fearless, and a pulsating color whose exuberance promotes a joyous and optimistic celebration, writing a new narrative. This year's Colour of the Year is powerful and empowering."
It's all about joy and optimism with the direction of colour.
Rich comforting colours- In contrast to the start white, neutral minimalist style that has been popular for a long time, there is a more towards more rich deep colours which create a feeling of comfort, wealth, strength and rich history (which can give brands a feeling of longevity).
Credit: Benjamin Moore
What are your favourite trends and what do you think you might be using in your graphics this year?
Want to improve your design skills and feel more confident creating graphics for your brand?
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