NEW VISUAL CULTURE: Top visual trends 2021
New visual culture: Top visual trends 2021
In recent years, the content itself and the ritual of publishing it have changed markedly. If earlier it was possible to take a photo on a smartphone, come up with a text and make a post, now another important step has been added to this chain of actions: post-production, applying filters, processing. Further, each user defines his style himself, still, the success largely depends on what you do with the photo before uploading it.
Culture, technology, and society influence visual trends on social media: following the new sincerity in culture and philosophy, more natural, sincere, and post-ironic faces are appearing at the forefront of Instagram and YouTube. But these are not the only trends shortly.
We have combined a bunch of researches by the trendsetters in visual culture (Adobe, Pinterest, Depositphotos, Shutterstock) and would like to share with you trends that are expected to hit our space in 2021. Let’s dive into the new visual world.
Do you wanna know the main trend of 2021?
3d is the trend of 2021, as you will see later in this article it is found in all branches of design: animated videos, illustration, and much more! 3D is already used even in UI(user interface), which until now was mainly flat. What is the reason for that 3D- mania? Well, first of all, modern viewers are getting used to the volumetric pictures, cause they fascinate more, engage more of their destructed attention. Secondly, let’s not miss the fact that we have some new software, like Figma. It is free for freelancers and has plugins that make the use of 3D easier. Any designer can learn how to create 3D scenarios worth-seeing.
We definitely loved 3D way before it became a trend, thus have a look at the 3D animation example!
1.0 Visual trends
1.1 Mood-Boosting Colors
Ultimate gray and Illuminating, have you heard about this duo? PANTONE named those two colors of the 2021 year. What is the idea here? Mood-boosting colors generate visual trends that express a feeling of joy. COVID-19 was a mental challenge to most of us, thus the happy colors have feedback in our sensation-process. They psychologically affect the feeling that we are awake and alive.
Here is what Flo Lau, Creative Director at Shutterstock – a global photo-bank says:
“For years, brands add agencies have used bold colors to stand out in a crowded content landscape; however, 2020 has forced creatives to be more purposeful in their strategies. We see them turning to optimistic colors that inspire a sense of hope — a sense that positive change is coming,”
In 2021, the audience will be loyal to brands that boost their spirits and instill confidence in the future. The best solution for brands is to use bright palettes that create a friendly, warming, and optimistic atmosphere.
1.2 Audiovisual immersion
In 2021, audio and visual content is quite the same as Ultimate gray and Illuminating, they go hand in hand. Short pieces of music in videos, sound effects in applications, tracks on sites make your viewers use and visual perception. This allows building a better user experience with your project, product, or brand, due to Depositphotos research.
2.0 Graphic Design
2.1 Big and Bold Typography
All the designers today (as well as all of the people who work in digital) know that serif fonts are no longer relevant. Still, which fonts should help us in 2021 to build the message successfully and create a great experience for the user? A skilled designer today can build a visual identity using just typography. This year big and bold typography will be a hot trend in design, due to Behance research. Even for the 3D, animated, or distorted typography implementing large letters is still topical.
2.2 Geometric shapes
Focusing on geometric shapes could seem easy. Though, creating a complex design with simple geometric shapes is relevant due to 2021. Posters, prints, logos will mainly focus on geometric shapes, even though it is not a new trend.
3.0 UI & IxD Design
3.1 Colors on White Surfaces
Colors are an important part of your brand`s style and UI (User Interface) design in particular. The color theme should look harmonious to highlight your content. The 2021 trend encourages the UI elements and surfaces to be easily distinguished from one another. All of the components that are placed on the top of the background should be contrasting with their bright colors to the smooth white or light gray background.
3.2 Custom made 3d Icons
Since 3D is the main trend of 2021, it influences the UI segment way more than ever. 3D icons are the new trend that is the key to looking fresh and modern. Everybody is used to flat icons, that have dominated UI design in the past few years. Just use the possibilities of the 3D fully.
4.0 Illustrations & Photos
4.1 Thin Outline in Illustrations
Behance calls it the main trend in the category of illustrations in 2021. Illustrations with this particular style are getting widely popular starting from last year and are gaining their popularity speed.
4.2 Crazy colors & shapes
Hippie-style vibrant colors would be widely used this year. At a first glance, a technique like that might look a bit unfinished, right? Although overlapping shapes and strong color combinations create bold illustrations that can inspire different viewers. Forms are very well thought out creating a composition.
4.3 Inspired by ’80s & 90’s Cartoons
Nostalgy is getting closer to an illustration as well. Cartoon style returned in 2020 and will continue to dominate in 2021. This classic style of cartoon drawing is using outlines, simple shapes with just a few details.
Pinterest did a daily year’s report that shows what people often search on Pinterest and here are the numbers that show that not only parting like the ‘90s is cool but leaving like
90s is cool!
- 90s cartoons +227%
- 90s outfit party/ hip hop +322%
- 90s fashion grunge +292%
- 90s music artists +165%
4.4 Aesthetics of cinematography
Photographers are inspired by cinematic aesthetics. Shots and videos are being created with compositions with a lot of space around the objects, attention to details, muted color palettes, and minimal post-processing. Authors will continue experimenting with new lighting techniques and invent innovative ways of shooting.
5.0 Video & Motion Design
That’s our favorite part. Animation has become more accessible as new technologies allow breakthroughs in the creative and unusual design.
5.1 Whimsical animation
As special effects and animation software enriched, creators developed unique approaches that gave content creators (animators, motion designers, etc.) new ways to express their ideas. We see an increase in the search for quirky animations and motion graphics by the users. Thus, take chances and be creative!
5.2 Mother nature
We are seeing an increasing number of searches for scenes in nature – Depositphotos. Waves crashing against rocks, dunes buried in sunlight, mountains covered with fog – such clips excite the audience and allow them to “move” to another place in their thoughts. COVID- 19 turned it to a huge value.
5.3 Animated Logos
Animated logos deserve a mention as well, as they have taken by storm everything that has a connection to branding. A logo is the first thing we see when entering an app, so it should look memorable, using only a symbol or a typeface. Combining the logo with smooth and sleek animation, you can achieve a better user interaction with your brand which is a great outcome for any company.
“What you see happening is that all these different design elements – 3d, skeuomorphic, flat, animation, et cetera – are getting interwoven more and more. and with VR, AR, AI, and other new technologies on the rise, that integration will only become more pronounced” – says Sebastiaan Scheer, Design director at MediaMonks Amsterdam.
5.4 Classic Cartoons
The classics of our childhood – cartoons are also found in motion design in 2021. Take a look at the video below and feel free to experiment with genres in 2021.
5.5 3D Illustrations
In recent years designers started to use 3d with photography or 2D with the motion to create a unique final concept. A variety of styles, characters, environments, and plots, from low-poly to cartoon or realistic 3D models, from interiors, architectural and object compositions to people, animals, and fantastic creatures. Catch inspiration!
The main design trends in 2021
Feel free to experiment in 2021, as well as use old tools that still work for your digital space. In case you agreed with yourself that animation and 3D videos are worth trying this year (well, they really are), feel free to contact us and get an effective booster for your business.