12 Graphic Design Trends for 2022

12 Graphic Design Trends for 2022

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This graphic design trends 2022 article has been contributed by Venngage.

As with any industry, graphic design is in a constant state of flux. Trends ebb and flow, new technologies arise, and designers adapt or fall by the wayside.

In recent years, we’ve seen a few graphic design trends rise to the top. If you’re looking to stay ahead of the curve in the world of branding design, it’s important to know which trends are on the rise and which ones you should avoid.

In this article, we’ll look at 12 graphic design trends that are expected to dominate in 2022 and why they’re becoming popular.

  1. Inclusive Visuals
  2. Serif Fonts Make a Come Back
  3. Custom Brand Visuals
  4. Geometric Fueled Designs
  5. Authentic Hand-Drawn Elements
  6. Eco & Nature
  7. Fun Data Visualizations
  8. Neon Backgrounds
  9. Colorful Icons and Illustrations
  10. Large Typography
  11. Mixed Media Designs
  12. Branded Memes

You may also be interested in our posts on the 2021 brand trends and 2021 logo trends.

1. Inclusive Visuals Will Be Key

Inclusive Visuals
Image source: Venngage

Inclusive visuals are one of the most important visual branding trends in 2022. They’re all about including people from all walks of life in your designs, regardless of their gender, race, or orientation.

Here’s how Slack has been incorporating representative visuals across its website.

Slack incorporating representative visuals across its website
Image source: slack.com

Why is this trend so important? The last few years have brought into focus the marginalization that numerous groups face. Businesses should be striving to make as many people feel represented as possible.

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Inclusive Recruiting
Image source: Inclusive Recruiting

Inclusive visuals are also invaluable for market research purposes. More companies have realized the advantages of conducting user studies with their target audiences. Who better to include in those studies than those not represented by the current visual language?

Inclusive Visuals Infographic
Image source: Venngage

 

2. Serif Fonts Will Make a Come Back

Branding with Serif Fonts
Image source: Venngage

Fonts play a critical role in the world of brand design. The font landscape is also constantly in flux. One particular area where this is obvious is in the use of sans serif fonts, which have been trending since 2016.

Sans Serif Font by Roman Melikhov
Image credit: @cabdesign

But in 2021 we saw a shift away from this trend and moving into 2022, we’re expecting a return to more traditional and classic font choices, such as serif fonts.

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It’s not that sans serif fonts aren’t popular anymore – they’re just a bit overused at the moment. As a result, we’re seeing graphic designers turn to serif fonts and even handwritten scripts for branding visuals. This is a great way to evoke nostalgia while also appearing elegant and calming.

 

3. Custom Brand Visuals

In the past year, we’ve seen a rise in the popularity of custom photos and illustrations in web design. From minimal flat images to full-blown photo collages, designers are looking for ways to add interest and creativity back into their designs.

ToolboxHR has been using custom illustrations for blog posts. Here’s a collection of some of their headers.

ToolBox
Image source: toolbox.com

Pipedrive has also been creating custom illustrations for its blog posts. This branding style has become uniquely their own, which helps to boost brand recognition.

Pipedrive
Image source: pipedrive.com

There are a few reasons for this trend. First, custom photos and illustrations help brands to stand out from the competition.

With so much noise on the internet, it’s more important than ever for businesses to find ways to stand out. Custom visuals provide an easy way to do this.

Second, custom visuals are more engaging than stock photos. When people see something that looks unique and personal, they’re more likely to take notice.

So, if you’re looking for a way to bring some creativity into your work, the rise in the popularity of custom visuals is great news for you.

The only downside is that these can be expensive to produce. You’ll also need someone on your team with strong design skills if you want to create unique visuals yourself. If you want to create a truly unique brand, custom visuals are a must.

 

4. Geometric Fueled Designs

Picture the most popular logos in the world today. What do they have in common? Odds are that you’ll find a few geometric shapes, either in the icon or the typeface. Geometric shapes and illustrative styles have been growing in popularity, and they show no signs of slowing down.

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Zendesk has been cleverly using geometric shapes in its marketing visuals, like in this Twitter post that relates back to the geometric shapes in their logo.

Zendesk
Image source: Zendesk

Why is this trend so popular? For one, it’s visually appealing. Geoometric shapes are clean, simple, and eye-catching, making them perfect for logos and branding. When done correctly, they tend to be more playful and can communicate fun or lively personalities.

Famous Paintings Reimagined With Geometric Shapes
Image source: kerry hawkins

As an alternative, illustrative graphics have also become popular. Illustrations allow room for interpretation while being engaging. This is why they’re on the top of our list.

 

4. Authentic Hand-Drawn Elements Will Be In Demand

Authentic Hand-Drawn Elements
Image source: Cam💥

Major brands have struggled with authenticity over the last few years, particularly during the pandemic. Featuring real people is a great way to maintain authenticity.

But it isn’t always possible to take high-quality photos of models or customers. That’s where authentic hand-drawn elements can bridge the gap.

They are a great way to add a personal touch to your designs. Plus, hand-drawn designs garner attention among the sea of heavily-produced social media visuals.

Hand-Drawn Elements
Image source: Venngage

In 2022, we’ll see a surge in hand-drawn designs from brand visuals. Businesses may need the assistance of graphic designers but there are online tools such as Venngage’s graphic design solution for marketers that make it easy to design visuals even without design experience.

 

5. Eco & Nature Imagery

Nature Imagery
Image source: @emma_berg__

One of the most popular brand identity trends of the last few years has been the use of nature imagery in designs. This can be seen in everything from product packaging to website design.

There are a few reasons why this trend is so popular. For one, it’s a way to add some natural beauty and peace to an often hectic world. Additionally, nature imagery is often associated with positive emotions like happiness and joy, which can help to create a positive association with your brand.

Nature Imagery
Image source: Venngage

If you’re looking to add some natural beauty to your brand, consider using images of plants, flowers, and landscapes in your designs. Just be sure to choose images that are relevant to your product or service and that don’t detract from your design.

 

6. Fun Data Visualizations

Fun Data Visualizations
Image source: rosehillwinecellars.com

In the past, data visualizations have often been dry and boring. They were designed to present information clearly and concisely. However, in 2022 we’ll see more fun data visualizations coming to the fore.

Here’s SEMRush’s graphic on the top keyword searches for the upcoming year.

Fun Data Visualizations
Image source:Semrush

And Twitter Marketing has been busy making a host of colorful data visualizations for trending topics on the social network.

Fun Data Visualizations
Image source: twitter.com

Why is this trend happening? Primarily because people are getting tired of seeing the same old data visualizations over and over again. They want something new and interesting to look at, and that’s where fun data visualizations come in.

These visuals are designed to entertain and inform, even when they take the form of traditional data visualizations.

This more entertaining variety of data viz leans into the meme-ification of marketing, another graphic design trend that has been taking over the brand design world (more on that in a bit).

 

7. Vivid Neon Backgrounds 

Vibrant grasp
Image source: @xUniqxee

The trending style for background colors change every year. Pastel shades, bold colors, or neon colors will become even more popular and take over the branding landscape until designers pivot to a another new style.

The aim is to create a background that doesn’t look too busy and distracting. We’re now seeing neon backgrounds return in time for 2022, especially in new logo design trends that make use of these neon colors and branded visuals.

We mentioned Twitter Marketing earlier. Not only have they been creating fun data visualizations, but the platform has adopted bright neon backgrounds for their visuals.

Twitter Marketing
Image source: twitter.com

The reason why neons are making a comeback is that they’re a great way to stand out in a crowded digital landscape. Striking colors add personality to your designs and portray a fun persona for your brand.

From a brand identity point of view, a neon background can also make visual elements like icons and text more legible by creating a color contrast with other design elements.

 

8. Colorful Icons and Illustrations Are In

Colorful Icons
Image source: sproutsocial.com

2022 is the year of color. We’re going to see more colorful icons and illustrations as a way to incorporate personality into branded visuals.

These types of visuals break the monotony of a photo-focused social media timeline, which makes them a great resource for brands to grab attention.

Illustrations
Image source: Venngage

Another reason to use colorful icons and illustrations? These visuals are incredibly versatile. They can be used for various digital platforms, and they always stand out from the crowd.

Plus, colorful icons and illustrations are also a great way to add some fun and whimsy to your designs, which is very necessary considering the current global situation.

 

10. Large Typography Will Dominate

Large Typography
Image source: Venngage

It isn’t just font styles but sizes that change from year-to-year. The use of large typefaces faded away but is now becoming popular with designers again. In 2022, brands will want their visuals to make an impact and large font sizes will be their preferred method.

Again, as we’ve seen with so many of our brand identity trends, this is crucial for attracting attention in a very busy digital world. Everyone is vying for attention from the same groups of people. A large font helps you stand out from the competition. Plus, it’s a fun way to add some personality to your designs.

Large Typography
Image source: @DesignReviewed

The great thing about large typography is how easy it is to implement into almost any project, including logos, websites, and even printed materials.

 

11. More Mixed Media Designs

Mixed Media Design
Image source: behance.net

Anybody who has spent some time online will know that mixed media designs have been around for a while, but they’re going to be even more popular in 2022. This is because they allow designers to experiment with a variety of different design elements and styles.

Mixed Media Designs
Image source: Venngage

Mixed media is a unique way to make visuals that stand out, especially when you have a powerful message to share with your audience.

 

12. Brand Memes

Branded Memes
Image source: @FoundationIncCo

Branded memes are a new trend that’s caught the audience’s attention. They’re already massively popular on social media and it’s going to get bigger in 2022.

Branded Memes
Image source: shopify

Memes are a great way to display a sense of humor and personality. It can be challenging to encapsulate these aspects of a brand in digital marketing.

But memes are so popular and easy to understand that brands can easily repurpose them or create new ones and build an instant connection with their audience.

Plus, memes help brands and audiences meet on a more personal level. The biggest positive of using memes? They’re an inexpensive way to get your brand in front of people.

 

In this video Philipp VanDusen puts together his own list of graphic design trends for 2022 as summarized below.

  • DIVERSITY + INCLUSIVITY
  • METAVERSE
  • DATAVIZ
  • MUTED TONES
  • VINTAGE APOTHECARY
  • ECO EVERYTHING
  • IRIDESCENCE
  • MODULAR GEO
  • TRIPPY TYPE
  • MOVING MARKS
  • TRUE GRIT
  • VERY PERI

Brand identity styles are constantly evolving according to the needs of the audience. This is what we expect will also happen in 2022.

The 12 graphic design trends we’ve mentioned here have already made an impact in 2021 and will continue to stay strong throughout 2022.

Most are easy to implement into your graphic design process and will help businesses garner more positive attention.

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