Flat design took designers by storm — evolving from a few simple projects to becoming a significant part of web, and especially application, design.
But what’s next on the horizon? And how will you know it? Here are a few ways to predict web design trends (with a few trendy web design examples)… and maybe even start one yourself.
Young designers are often at the forefront of new design. Peruse portfolios on sites such as Dribbble (try the Debuts list) and Behance to see what others are working on. Look at website collections that are getting attention from Awwwards or The Best Designs.
Side projects can be a great indicator. Why? Because those are the things that designers often want to work on. Projects that are not hindered by client restrictions.
Take a close look at color choices – bright, bold, muted, minimal – and typography first. What do you see? What kinds of decisions are designers making?
Then look at interface. What do the visual elements look like? How do you interact with the site? How does it look on other devices? All of these things can be predictors of trends.
Look to other creative fields for inspiration. Art, fashion and architecture are all areas where web designers can draw inspiration and start trends.
Fashion can be a great indicator or trendy color choices. Images from fashion week can help you see what colors will be the next big thing. Pantone’s annual color of the year selection is also a valuable tool when it comes to predicting color trends.
Art can be helpful as well. What are modern images saying? What’s the style? Straightforward or abstract, textured or flat, serene or chaotic? These themes can all play a role in web design. (Graffiti can also help you see what others are thinking in terms of text and style.)
Note the shapes of new buildings. Carry these angles into design projects. The same can be said for the textures used on facades of buildings and the color of building materials.
Think about how these mediums merge. Not all that long ago, video was a thing for television or YouTube. Now video is a trendy element as part of website backgrounds. And more animation is popping up on a variety of websites, frequently meshing with or taking the place of parallax scrolling.
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