The 21 Biggest Graphic Design Trends Dominating 2024

Graphic design trends
Image by Pixabay on pexels

Every year, graphic design trends showcase how art can imitate life. These trends reflect our society’s constantly changing needs and perspectives. 

In 2024, graphic designers will push headfirst into diversity and inclusion, 3D surrealism, and AI-powered design. 

From the pleasant feelings of nostalgia to the chilling vibe of cyber reality and loaded compositions, 2024 design trends are a collision of technological progress and human comforts. Expect to see contrasting perspectives on the past and the fast-approaching future!

Key Points

  • Graphic design trends are current styles and practices in graphic design that reflect societal changes and technological advancements.
  • Trends help designers create relevant and engaging content, showcasing their awareness of evolving consumer tastes.
  • Includes minimalism, 3D design, AI-powered design, geometric shapes, hand-drawn illustrations, gradients, 70’s nostalgia, typography, anime bold, and collages.
  • Designers can use these trends to enhance brand identity, improve visual storytelling, and connect with audiences more effectively.

Graphic design trends help you to build projects that communicate and connect with your audience in a timely manner. By tracking and understanding trends, you tell your audience that you belong in the world of graphic design and are versed in how consumer tastes are evolving. 

Toni Cade Bambara, a writer, and activist, stated that “the role of the artist is to make revolution irresistible”. In other words, graphic design trends are more than just a reflection of the times; they may also serve as a catalyst for change.

Here are 21 graphic design trends you need to know in 2024:

#1. Minimalism

Many prominent brands used minimalism to communicate feelings of simplicity and sophistication. However, a more colourful version of minimalism can offer a different design effect—bright, energetic, and optimistic. This brasher version of minimalism, completely different from its black-and-white roots, is steadily gaining popularity. Today’s designers pare down any unneeded elements to the basics, creating eye-catching and unflinching content that combines contemporary aesthetics, bold fonts, and basic gradients. 

Even said, some graphic designers are abandoning minimalism in favour of maximalism. Gen Z, in particular, seems to prefer strong, maximalist designs.

#2. 3D Design

Although 3D design is not a new trend, it is expected to become more popular in the near future. This is largely due to new technology, which makes rendering complex 3D elements and textures on web pages much easier. 3D can be applied in every design aspect, from user interface to illustration. 

Whether in static or animated images, 3D adds a sense of realism to your designs, as if the brand and its content are leaping out at you. 3D is difficult to skip over, and it provides graphic designers with a new dimension to work with. In terms of employment, many industry insiders predict a considerable increase in the hiring of graphic designers in computer-related design and other electronic media industries.

#3. Designed by AI

One of the newest graphic design trends to emerge is using AI platforms and tools. While this may seem counterintuitive, designers use their creativity to art-direct AI tools and elevate graphic design to new heights. We’re seeing hyper-realistic visuals of stores and digital art that seem like hand-drawn illustrations created by digital artists. 

Free Grayscale Photo of a Futuristic Robot Stock Photo

AI tools can assist designers in accelerating their workflows, research, and creative ideas. 

Text-to-image generators improve the accessibility of graphic design and visual storytelling.

Do you want to use an AI design tool for your brand? Try Midjourney, Dall.E.2, or Jasper. Use it to create a unique landing page, data visualization, branded packaging, app design concepts, and more! 

AI design has opened up a world of new possibilities for the general public.

#4. Geometric Shapes

The geometric shapes are extremely popular, particularly in brand logos for Adidas, YouTube, Spotify, Instagram, and even the Olympic Games. 

Consistency is one of the unchanging rules of graphic design and one of the most significant advantages of geometric shapes. 

Geometric shapes can display data facts and content, creating clear copy and eye-catching visuals.

#5. Hand-drawn Illustrations

In this era of minimalistic graphic design, authentic and simple design stands out. Hand-drawn illustrations allow you to include distinctive visual features in your brand’s identity. 

Any hand-drawn design is sophisticated and difficult to copy, so you can be confident that your hand-drawn illustrations will stand out even if someone attempts to replicate them.

#6. Gradients 

Free Color Text Stock Photo

Gradients have long been a popular web design trend, and they are also making a comeback in graphic design. 

They combine colours seamlessly, creating captivating transitions that give depth and character to your designs. Gradients are versatile and can be used for backgrounds, fonts, and logos. 

Gradients can add flair to simple background colours. Their powerful visual effect makes them recognizable and might even serve as an important element of your brand identity. 

Gradients, whether subtle or dazzling, will provide a layer of visual intrigue to your design efforts this year.

#7. 70’s Nostalgia 

Last year, Y2K brought back glitter, gaudiness, and, worst of all, low-rise denim. This year, however, designers are looking to the wacky 1960s and 1970s for nostalgic relief. This is one of the top graphic design trends to watch this year. Think faded retro colour palettes, handmade illustrations, and a focus on the human touch in design. 

Free Man in Bus Stock Photo

People in 2024 are chasing after the simplicity of the past. With all this discussion about AI, quantum computing, and the end of the world as we know it, both designers and users need a break from technological growth. As a result, polaroid cameras and the film gained popularity, as did a return to simpler patterns and colours.

Unlike the chaotic look of Y2K designs, these retro designs are more grounded. Think retro stripes, floral or funky designs, and a laid-back style and feel. Re-watch these ’70s classics to get in the mood for the golden years. 

Vintage art designs, as well as retro stripes and checkers, will be popular in branding and graphics. 2024 is totally embracing the look of past styles in new ways! 

The graphic design industry usually evolves alongside the worlds of fashion, beauty, and interior design. Jumping on this trend shows your audience you are current and engaged with emerging design styles.

#8. Typography 

Many ads relied primarily on creative visuals, bold fonts, and long text, resulting in creative chaos with no clear focus point. 

The good news is that this formula is evolving, and designers are now focusing on one visual aspect at a time while sticking to minimalist design principles. 

This year’s focus is on bold and customized typography. 

It’s simple: when using bold fonts, they should take centre stage in designs. They quickly attract the viewer’s attention and draw them into your story. 

The need to stand out in a highly competitive business environment drives designers to go above and beyond. That is why major brands are now strengthening their authenticity by designing bespoke typefaces.

#9. Anime Bold 

In recent years, the captivating essence of anime has penetrated the designs, resulting in a vibrant rush of creativity. This graphic design trend embraced anime’s signature features, such as exaggerated characters, emotive energy, and eye-catching images. 

What distinguishes anime bold are the bright, bold, and vibrant colours that give life to the animated and exaggerated anime style. These illustrations often use a unique line style, combining the elegance of hand-drawn art with the fun and cartoonish, resulting in a visual feast for the eyes.

Free Anime Character Stock Photo

Whether you own a cafe, a clothes store, or a local bakery, this design trend can be used on various design and marketing materials, including social media graphics, posters, flyers, and even packaging. It’s adaptable enough to meet your specific needs. 

Here’s a Tip: If you wish to incorporate this trend, use a character or illustration in your package or flier to make it more appealing and expressive.

#10. Collage 

Collages emerge as a noteworthy trend in graphic design in 2024, effortlessly combining pictures, shapes, and textures to create visually engaging compositions. They remove customary constraints, allowing designers to express their unique visions. 

Free Colorful Rainbow Stickers Stock Photo

Collages, whether digital mosaics or homemade cut-and-paste works, provide a raw authenticity that complements captivating visual storytelling. Designers will continue to include collages in their work, merging the old and modern, showing off a timeless allure in the digital age. 

Mixed media collage layouts bring a unique and appealing style to the forefront of graphic design trends.

#11. Serifs

Serifed fonts, while not really a visual style on their own, have taken centre stage in graphic design trends for 2023 and will become even more popular in 2024. Major companies are shifting away from basic sans-serif fonts in search of something more characterful. 

This move might be interpreted as a solid response to all of the sans-serifs that became the default choice for many brands in the past. It even became a meme of all the brands who “lost” their uniqueness and succumbed to the trend known as sans-serif.

Sharp serifs were a popular design style last year. Since the Netflix series “Stranger Things” unveiled its timeless wordmark, similar fonts such as ITC Benguiat have been widely adopted. In contrast, rounder serifs remain fashionable. Used by “kind” brands, this is a sensible choice. Kyle Benson’s font “Gooper” is a personal favourite.

#12. Diversity and Inclusion 

Although diversity and representation should be an industry standard rather than a fleeting choice, they are making a breakthrough in 2024. 

Graphic design entails presenting your designs and products with more “real” people. People who are not models. People who do not conform to society’s unattainable expectations for physical appearance. 

Designers are unabashedly embracing diversity, highlighting the various looks, perspectives, and lifestyles of the world’s most beautiful people. Our strengths as a society stem from our diverse perspectives on life. Why not celebrate it?

#13. Colour Clashing

Free Veranda Surrounded by Green Cactus and Pink Bougainvillea Stock Photo

Colour clashing is not a new trend in graphic design. However, as more brands adopt AA WCAG Web Content Accessibility Guidelines for colour contrast, we can expect to see more bold, vibrant, and unique colour palettes on our screens in 2024.

#14. Anti-design 

The year 2023 saw a return to the gothic aesthetic. While 2024 will retain some gloom and mystery, the designs will reflect a rebellious spirit through fonts of different weights and sizes, overlapping text, altered spacing, and sideways composition. This style is ideally suited to designs for events such as festivals and concerts, as well as creative industry events like art gallery openings.

#15. Texture and Senses 

People communicate and inspire in graphic design through colours, shapes, and words. Piggybacking on the surreal atmosphere of the new world-realism movement, designers incorporate real-world textures such as bubble gum, glass, grainy paper, and flowy silk to bring a physical feel to the design. 

We are also noticing an increase in texture imagery. Risograph-like textures are also becoming increasingly popular in branding, graphics, and web design. 

This design creates a more handmade, artisanal look and can incorporate a retro art deco accent. It’s perfect for brands or designers who want to stand out or deviate from the current trend.

When developing a project, think beyond digital boundaries and incorporate layers of physical sensation via texture. Textures, such as the fizz of soda or a soft cloth, elicit a sensation of touch that your target audience can relate to and seek.

#16. Earth-first Design 

As the conversation about sustainability grows, designers embrace climate awareness and infuse their designs with natural elements, textures, and earthy colour palettes. 

McKinsey’s analysis on sustainability and affordability revealed that 84% of consumers prioritize sustainability in their purchasing decisions. Products with sustainability claims are expanding faster than those without. 

This trend is inspired by the strength of rocks, the swaying sea, vibrant fresh fruit, and a thick forest canopy. Designers are channelling nature’s feelings while carefully selecting colours with natural dye alternatives that look well on the surface they are sitting on.

With the rise of paper packaging, metal containers, and glass surfaces, designers are rethinking what environmentally beneficial colours and designs they can include in these materials without increasing carbon emissions. 

This approach is ideal for branding, online design, and packaging food or natural products. But everything goes as long as it is environmentally friendly.

#17. Maximalism in Composition 

We witnessed 2023 usher in a deluge of maximalism to save us from monotonous routines and the same old safe bets on design. In 2024, we’re seeing a shift toward loaded compositions that seem like a “Where’s Waldo?” book. 

Designers are packing colour, shape, typography, and visuals into every corner and crevice, reducing margins. Think large, bold font in jarring sizes. Shapes and gradient colour combinations that extend beyond the design constraints. It adds excitement, mystery, and a general disregard for page size.

#18. Graphic Graffiti 

Graphic graffiti is about creating a modern look by drawing inspiration from the vivid world of graffiti and the neon-infused energy of the 1980s. This design trend is about more than simply purchasing a standard graffiti font and getting done with it. 

It smoothly combines industrial elements, captures the raw charm of “urban decay,” uses spray-painted lettering and symbols, revels in distortion and roughness, and embraces the collage/sticker book aesthetic. The end effect is a visual explosion that proudly promotes individualism and self-expression, similar to the dynamic world of graffiti tags.

These designs are a powerful testament to the human touch and limitless creativity, starkly contrasting the constant advancement of AI technology and design software. When applying the graphic graffiti trend, companies must align the design elements with their identity and target demographic. 

When executed properly, this style can express a sense of creativity, personality, and urban energy, leaving a lasting impression.

#19. Bento Box Grids 

The Bento box grid style in graphic design is based on the artful arrangement of boxes of varied sizes to house pieces of information or graphics. When these pieces are assembled, they form a coherent larger box that resembles the sections of traditional Japanese bento boxes. 

“This trend is characterized by elements such as minimalism, contrasts, geometry, textures and narrative, which collectively contribute to its distinctiveness and creative appeal.” Says Anastasia, a 99designs designer.

This design style can be used in various formats, including flyer and brochure layouts, as well as digital, online, and mobile design. The primary emphasis is on developing information and visual hierarchy, as well as structuring and organizing content to guide users or highlight key features. 

This design provides a dynamic method to display multiple things in a compact space. It’s an experimental and expressive technique of storytelling that presents information in bits, similar to the experience of reading comics.

#20. Cluttercore

Cluttercore, like maximalism, is based on self-expression, but it takes it to a whole new level—a bolder, louder, and more colourful manner of declaring one’s identity. It thrives on attracting attention and celebrating excess and grandeur. 

This 2024 design trend embraces broad strokes, brilliant colours, and the deliberate overlap of images as a form of self-expression that promotes optimism. 

Cluttercore is essentially a liberated celebration of disarray, highlighting artefacts and clues that are meaningful to one’s identity or passion. It can be viewed as a reflection of global disorder, providing a distinct form of self-expression in response to external chaos to which we can all relate and connect.

#21. Digital Destruction

In a world where artificial intelligence has become increasingly capable of producing faultless digital art, digital destruction emerges as a compelling form of revolt. It takes inspiration from the fractured and chaotic world of computers, transforming faults into intriguing and visually appealing compositions. Pixelation, broken typography, and distortion are strong counterarguments to clean, tech-focused design trends.

At its core, digital destruction clearly states that perfection isn’t the only path in art and design. Instead, it embraces the concept of “broken, destructive art,” an intentional shift away from the quest for perfection. This trend celebrates the visual turbulence of digital anomalies, including pixelation, glitch effects, warped lines, high-contrast colour palettes, and brilliant neon colours. 

Here’s a Tip: To achieve this appearance on your packaging, flyer, poster, logo, or brand, use a digital or distorted font or incorporate a pixel and glitch effect into your design.

In a world where change is the only constant, graphic design serves as both a reflection and a canvas for our hopes, fears, and dreams.  Here is a FREE checklist that can further make the process more swiftly than you think:

Whether you’re a small coffee shop embracing the cosy cluttercore vibes, a local boutique dabbling in the digital destruction design trend, or an online startup seeking solace in the serene world of freehand revival, keep in mind that design is about storytelling, connection, and making your mark on the world. 

You don’t have to follow these graphic design trends exactly. However, if you’re a small business, you can use them to add creativity to your branding, convey your unique story, and engage with your audience in new ways.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like