Discover 2020's hot design trends

Discover 2020's hot design trends
(Image credit: Nike)

People are a fickle bunch, always getting bored with things and demanding exciting new stuff all the time. Wouldn't it be lovely if design could maybe just draw a line under everything and decide, yeah, that's it, it's all just going to look like this from now on? Then we wouldn't have to worry about keeping up with trends.

But no, designers have to keep trying out new experimental design (opens in new tab), ditching old ideas and techniques, and playing around with different palettes and styles, and if you don't stay abreast of what's happening then you'll quickly find that nobody loves your work any more. Harsh, but that's the way of the world. And let's face it, we all love a good trend.

If you want to still be relevant this time next year, you'll want to feast your eyes on this new infographic from Coastal Creative. They've identified eight hot design trends that they reckon are going to be massive in 2020, and put them all down in a visual format.

This is Coastal's sixth annual set of trend predictions, and they reckon that, being the first year of a new decade, 2020 is going to bring around some hugely exciting and eye-catching new looks. If you want your designs to hit the 2020 zeitgeist hard, then these you should be looking into incorporating some of these looks into your visual language.

Discover 2020's hot design trends

Forget about flat; realistic texture's back (Image credit: Santi Zoraidez)
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First up is VR panoramas – adding depth to web design by taking a leaf from the VR playbook and adding panoramic, parallax backdrops to sites. Next there's surreal product photos; rejecting naturalist settings for product shots, and dropping your product in front of surreal dreamscapes.

Another innovation for promotional campaigns is zero gravity – using 3D modelling techniques to have your product floating in the air. And while flat design (opens in new tab) has been having its way for a long time, Coastal is predicting an upsurge in realistic textures, with plenty of tactile grain and contour to them.

With so much data to try and make sense of, another prediction is a raise in abstract data visualisation – thinking beyond graphs and charts and finding more engaging ways of turning data into digestible narratives. 

Coastal believes that 2020's big colour is going to be yellow; it's the colour of youth and confidence, perfect for a fresh new decade, so expect to see yellow backgrounds and accents all over the place.

For further visual impact, Coastal expects multimedia portraits to become a big thing; instead of using photographs or sketches of people, designers are mixing up various mediums within a single portrait to create much more exciting representations. And the final trend prediction is Earth & Sky 2.0: fantastical imagery of the earth and sky, inspired by cartography and astronomy to create something thoroughly other-worldly.

You can see the full infographic below; to find out more, head for the more in-depth post over at Coastal Creative (opens in new tab).

Discover 2020's hot design trends

(Image credit: Coastal Creative)
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Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.