Graphic Design Inclinations for 2012

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Every designers’ dirty little secret is that they copy other designers’ work. They see work they like, and they imitate it. Rather cheekily, they call this inspiration.
— Aaron Russell

In this fast paced, full throttle culture that we are willfully throwing ourselves into, we find ourselves wanting to know and consume the latest trends at an increasingly exponential rate. The latest app, the newest social media site, the highest quality clothing and the most appealing design are all areas in which we try to predict.  

Though it is impossible to accurately predict the path of such things, design trends may be the most accessible because they reflect the current culture. Where it was, where it now and the possibilities of where it may go in the near future.

We don't pretend to know what the next big thing is and some of these trends may never come to the fruition. But we can still make highly educated guesses.....here goes nothing :

1)  A return to imperfection. Technology has for several years, allowed for impossibly clean lines, hyperrealistic shadowing and an overall perfection that designers of the previous decade could only have dreamt about.  Now that it has become so commonplace, we feel that designers may look to the imperfect perfection of nature for their inspiration. An uncut version or a hand drawn aesthetic may be something that designers choose to include in their work. 

2) Interactivity Explosion.  With the addition of html 5. Websites are now capable of a level of engagement that was previously only available to large corporations and video games. We think that design will come full circle to engage with customers and reinterpret the boundaries of design.

3) Mobility.   With the number of mobile users increasing ever year (due to the decrease and affordability of  the smartphone) designers must be willing to include mobile devices in more meaningful ways.  We expect an increase in simplicity (possibly patterning and minimalism) to accommodate this new market. 

4) Mobile users increase every year, so having a website that is both touch-friendly and mouse-friendly is more of a necessity than a trend. Mobile users have a major influence in considering minimal web design. This translates to faster loading times, interactivity, and simpler pages for those using mobile devices. According to Omniture, mobile-optimized experience produces an average of 75% higher rate of engagements per mobile visitor.

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