Top 8 Graphic Design Trends Of 2018

Top 8 Graphic Design Trends Of 2018

Do you know the difference between a fad and a trend? A fad is an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something for a short period of time. On the other hand, a trend is a direction in which something is developing or changing!

A fad might come and go but trends, they tend to last! They define the years to come! They symbolize an era!

When we talk about the trends in graphic designing, then it is something that has a life of its own. Developing in a way that emulates the past and yet leaving behind its exclusive footprints. In this dynamic world of graphic designing, we want to make sure that you stay up-to-date with the trends that will dictate 2018. Let’s design your 2018 in a way that catches the eyes and pleases the heart!

Here are the 7 graphic design trends to watch out for in 2018!


The Glitch Effect

What was once a mistake, is a celebration today. Glitch is the effect on which designers and programmers invested hundreds of hours to get rid of. However, it has now become something that people add intentionally. It gets further conspicuous from the fact that Glitch images have risen by 32 percent on Shutterstock.

The glitch effect is essentially a corrupted image, where the picture is distorted by various colored layers or through a lack of symmetry between two parts of the image. The design technique utilizes imagery that appears to be transformed or broken up by a kind of pixelated interference.

Horror movies have loved this effect for ages and in 2018 these impressions will take over the graphic design world. The thing about glitch is that it instantly commands attention and stands out.

All in all, the glitch effect is widening its spectrum and has become a part of almost everything in culture including fashion, branding, TV, film, packaging, and out-of-home campaigns.



Colors are one of the most important and powerful elements in a design. Since designs are in a constant state of evolution, our perception of colors (and the ways we use them) is also ever-changing. Since we are talking about colors, the next obvious thing that pops into our mind is “Gradient.”

At the most basic level, a gradient is the gradual blending from one color to another. It is created by using two or more different colors, to paint one element while gradually fading between them. Consequently, it lets the designer create a holistically new color. Something that looks new and refreshing.

Now you must be thinking that yes gradients were popular but why talk about them now? Well, gradients have made a powerful comeback with flat design. Flat design is evolving, and gradients are making their modern-day comeback as a flat design enhancement. This enhancement is part of a design update often referred to as “flat 2.0” or “semi-flat design.”

Their popularity gets further personified by their reappearance in iOS and adoption by industry heads like Stripe and Instagram. Just wait and you will see more of them in the form of vibrant UI, branding, backgrounds, illustrations, and overlays.


Cropped, Bold and Hand-Written Typography

Not only what is written, but how it’s written matters.

This is exactly where typography steps in. For 2018 there are two dominant trends forecasted in this arena.

Firstly, we have Bold Typography -The bigger the letters, the better impact. With the ever-declining attention span of the readers, bold but simple shapes of the letters allow readers to focus on the actual message. You might have noticed the general trend of using loud, daring fonts combined with a punchy copy to grab the viewer’s attention.

Cropped Typography is the second emerging trend. It’s the art of erasing parts of the letters while still keeping their readability. It gives a creative and contemporary appeal. In addition, it works best with clean graphic designs thus keeping in line with minimalism.

Hand-Written Topography – Your design is not just any design, it has a character of its own. The best way to create a unique personality is by using Hand-Written Typography. Now it might sound basic but its an absolute hit these days. The rustic appeal is its very USP. How? Well just imagine, if you were invited to a Birthday party. Would it feel more personal if it was typed out, or if it was handwritten? Hand-Written fonts inherently are welcoming and feel special. The best part is that you can customize it in any way you desire.


Multiple Color Themes

Since we are talking about change, we just can’t miss out on this one. Earlier the brands used to go for limited color palettes to make them easy to recognize. However, the march of future is towards using multiple color themes and creating something out of the box.


Dropbox decided to completely ditch their old color palette in 2017 to help update their brand and reach.

Instead of changing their logo design, which everyone already identified, they added a ton of new official brand colors to use with it. They built a new branding to show that great things can happen when diverse minds operate together.


We personally loved this refreshing breeze of change.

In short, time to say goodbye to the old and go diverse with your color palettes and create something awesome!


Modern Retro

Can something be both retro and modern? Absolutely, Yes! it requires an addition of modern appeal to retro designs. In 2018, “everything old is new again with Modern Retro” Here’s how!

Modern retro takes us back to using the design patterns of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. Designers deliberately are creating graphical elements that aren’t as good as they can be. This is done to help maintain the authenticity of the time period represented. These projects feature a lot of elements with over-dramatized pixels with blocky illustration and lettering.


Here’s an example of the “pixel edition” packaging designed for Coca-Cola by Erin L. M. McGuire. It features space invaders from the arcade video game of the same name released in 1978.

The trick to a perfect modern retro design is to use imagery and design styles that invoke the type of brand nostalgia that works with the message you want to convey. Then build the design on a modern framework so that users feel an emotional connection and understand how to interact with and use the design.



“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”- Hans Hofmann

Less is more i.e. minimalism. It is thoroughly being used in the creative world of 2018.

Let’s trace its roots first. As a design movement, minimalism is not so old, having only come into its own in the late 1960s and early 1970s, particularly with American Visual Art.

So what is minimalism all about? It’s about designers expressing only the most essential and necessary elements of a product or subject by getting rid of any excess and, therefore, unnecessary components and features.

The two most essential components in minimalism, irrespective of its sub-genres are space and the dominant visual.

For space, well you don’t have to have a massive amount of white space but just enough room for your design to breathe and stand on its own. Secondly, for dominant visual, try to stick to one thing and make it stand out from everything else.

Hustler strongly believes that Minimalism is a design trend that will continue to augment and remain classic. Its biggest perk is its simplicity which makes it a viable option for a plethora of other style and trends.

More significantly, the roots of minimalism and its techniques will always serve as a foundation for beautiful design.


Color Channel Effect

Some designers are calling it the distorted reality effect, while others are sticking to “color channel” effect. It is a somewhat trippy effect that creates amazing visual illusion or hallucination. Fundamentally, you take some imagery and break out all of the CMYK or RGB colors and overlay them with various levels of transparency.

This was one of the most popular visual effects of late 2017 and the love for it is only going to grow in 2018.

Another popular effect underlying color channel effect includes Double Color Light Effect. It is designed by splitting the color channels and then manipulating them. But instead of making it look like a light source, it looks like another layer of the same or similar image to create the distortion.


Sketches and Hand-Drawn Illustrations

The world of digital is being combined with traditional hand drawings and it has created a unique, edgy look unlike any other. It goes hand in hand with the movement away from the very technical and a return to an artisan approach.

In 2017 we saw the illustrations standing alone in this digital world and they really made an impression on people. In 2018 we are seeing this trend evolving as these illustrations are being combined and overlaid with graphics. The incorporation of negative space, custom graphics, and different typography is bringing this look to the next level.

The best part about them is the human element they bring to the designs. It naturally evokes a kind of childish and nostalgic feeling. In addition, they are increasingly becoming popular as a way of explaining and illustrating more complex problems or instructions.


To sum it up, custom hand-drawn illustrations are always on the wave of popularity. Every design is a piece of art created with a lot of talent and imagination. This is precisely why illustrations can never go out of style.

Coming towards the end of the blog, we would like to share that we firmly believe that design is a journey of discovery. A journey where you build a brand that stands out! In this path just don’t follow a trend instead become a trend. Contact us and let’s take this journey together.



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