I heard someone once say that you can either be fashionable or have style. And I’m pretty sure I don’t have to explain which one carries more substance.
The same principle applies to graphic design. Trends come and go, causing many to constantly adjust their visual language in pursuit of the latest visual effects, thinking that this will keep them in vogue. However, in reality, it only makes all brands look alike.

If you’re part of or interested in the creative industry, you’ve likely observed the growing similarity in graphic design projects.
This trend is concerning, as it might lead to the mistaken assumption that this is what the audience wants to see and engage with.
It may also suggest that designers are designing for other designers rather than their clients’ target audiences.

We must not lose sight of the fact that graphic design is not an art form or fashion statement; it is a tool, designed to perform a very specific role based on data. When I’m looking to buy a hammer, I don’t choose one because it matches my sofa, but because it will solve a problem. I’m certain there are beautifully crafted, high-performing hammers out there. Yet, those who create them first prioritize craftsmanship, materials, structure, ergonomics, and then consider aesthetics – never the other way around. The same approach applies to graphic design; it is distilled from data. Its purpose is to support the message, creating a recognizable visual language that imparts a sense of familiarity and reassurance.

So, when you’re scrolling through numerous design posts and witnessing emerging trends, rather than blindly following the crowd, re-engage with your audience. Discover what they are currently going through, revisit your brand guidelines, refresh your understanding of why you are pursuing your creative endeavours, and then make decisions about changes. But make those decisions based on facts, not on a fear of missing out or becoming irrelevant just because you’re not using trendy fonts or pastel colours. Design should always follow the data.

©Joanna Kosinska 2023
Website by Joanna Kosinska