7 Graphic Design Trends for 2017

November 21, 2016
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As 2016 comes to a close, 2017 offers graphic designers new options and choices when it comes to what trends to adopt. Whilst many of 2016’s graphic design trends are still as popular as ever, there are a few new ones making their way into the forefront of designer’s minds. Here are 7 design trends to make sure to look out for in 2017.


Modern-retro has, by its very definition, been around for a while. Modern flare added to retro typefaces and colour pallets makes for an interesting fusion of new and old. 2016 saw the modern-retro design rising through the ranks of popularity and finding its way onto packaging, web design and company logos everywhere. The Modern-retro style’s popularity will almost definitely continue and we haven’t seen the last of it yet.

Responsive Logos

Responsive logos have been designed to keep up with the ever-expanding selection of formats and scales available to users. Scaling down for mobile phones doesn’t just mean making things smaller, a good logo will respond to its environment and still be functional. Responsive logos are simple and malleable. With more smart devices with different forms available every day, the responsive logo can only continue to become more relevant in 2017.


Cinemagraphs are still photographs where a single, minor movement is made. The image will usually come in the form of a GIF. Cinemagraphs are an incredibly simple and effective answer to one of modern marketing’s biggest problems: time. Marketing supposedly has to work faster to grab our attentions, and cinemagraphs do just this. With more and more competition between marketers and screen real estate, expect to see cinemagraphs coming to screens near you in 2017.


Tracing its roots back to the early part of the 20th century and, for some, even further, minimalism is as popular today as it ever was. Minimalism’s focus on simplicity and functionality has led to is adoption in many brands and design trends. Apple has opted for this “Less is more” idea, along with Google who embodied it within ‘material design’. Intentional white space means more breathability and reduced focal points. With its popularity only increasing, it looks like minimalism is here to stay for 2017.

Illustrated (Hand drawn) images

Illustrated images are great for adding a clearly human element to graphic design. More recently, Illustrations have tended to be simple and evoke a kind of childish and nostalgic feeling. They can be used in a huge range of situations, but are becoming increasingly popular as a way of explaining and illustrating more complex problems or instructions. 2017 will likely find itself littered with these types of design as their ‘sketching’, ‘independent’ quality becomes more and more popular amongst consumers.

Modular layouts

Modular layouts function to break up a text and put it into manageable chuncks. Instead of using a long block of text, graphic designers have found that making the information more manageable makes more people want to interact with it. Not only does modular design function as a great management tool, it can also look really professional when done well. Expect more minimalist designs in 2017, with possible influences from other trends on this list.

Bold photography and sleek text

This one is pretty much a staple in the world of graphic design at the moment. The mix of bold and sleek text with images which captivate the viewer, make for a design trend which exudes class and style. The text and photography tend to work together to create some great contrasts and brilliant borders.

Last year, Time reported on a study by Microsoft which suggested that audience attention spans have shortened as a result of a more digital lifestyle (http://time.com/3858309/attention-spans-goldfish/). It would appear that the future (if not already the present) of graphic design is heading towards a focus on making information as accessible as quickly and as easily as possible. However, different styles suit different brands and attract different people. Trends are a great way to see popularity, but make sure that it fits with the brand before applying it. Check out http://yellowcreative.co.uk to see some great examples of styles others are using now.

Yellow Creative is a London based graphic design company who aim to deliver cutting edge designs which keep up with ever changing trends. Check out http://yellowcreative.co.uk/ to see more.