To celebrate #NationalCreativityDay, we’ve asked our UX Designer Adam for the lowdown on digital design trends making creative waves at the moment. Here are his top 5:

1. AI

With AI making such huge leaps in capability over the last couple of years, it’s impossible to ignore its impact on the digital world. AI has already been used to enhance user experiences by offering personalised content, improving accessibility, and increasing efficiency. It’ll be interesting to see what new breakthroughs come in the next year! 

For an example of how to integrate AI into a product, Notion has done a great job, it feels really seamless and is genuinely useful.

2. Sustainable design

wwf sustainable website

This involves considering using heavy images and videos, improving server efficiency, and enhancing code performance to ensure faster loading times and lower energy use. Sustainable web design also emphasises long-term usability and accessibility, ensuring that sites are easy to maintain and update, thus extending their useful life and reducing the need for frequent redesigns. By adopting these practices, web designers contribute to reducing the digital carbon footprint and promoting a more sustainable internet.

The WWF website is hosted on servers that use renewable energy and is designed so that pages will be as small as possible, reducing resource consumption. It does this without losing any personality or usability.

3. Scrollytelling

Sometimes the best way to connect with your audience is through storytelling. The “scrollytelling” trend is a way to make the most of a web page’s unique characteristics as a medium for storytelling. As the name suggests this uses scrolling to introduce new text, images and videos to help the narrative unfold. When used well, this method can create some incredibly engaging and accessible content that will draw users into your message. 

Even without being able to read Norwegian, the use of illustrations and animations on this page for the Salvation Army tells a story, and immerses the user in the message.

 

4. Creative Typography

Creative typography is definitely making a comeback! By using unique and expressive typography, designers can create distinctive and memorable user experiences that stand out from the crowd. Creative typography can convey personality and emotion, helping to strengthen brand identity and communicate messages more effectively.

Innovative typographic designs can guide users’ attention, highlight important information, and improve readability. Techniques such as variable fonts, custom typefaces, and dynamic text animations are becoming more popular, allowing for greater flexibility and creativity in design. This also improves usability by ensuring that text is functional across different devices and screen sizes.

The site Ordinary Folk uses typography beautifully. The minimalist approach makes the UX really simple and straightforward, but still retains a lot of personality and character, which is a tricky balance to get right. 

5. Neo-Brutalism

Neo-Brutalism has been a growing trend in design for the last few years and is continuing to gather momentum. It draws on the bold, raw and stripped-back ideas of brutalist architecture, and softens it with a playful tone, often incorporating bright primary colours. 

The minimalism of Neo-Brutalism, allows for quicker loading time (which also helps with sustainability as discussed above) and focuses the user’s attention on the actual content. However, unlike some types of minimalist design, Neo-Brutalism encourages experimental and unconventional uses of layout, typography and colour; creating a really engaging and unique experience for the user. 

The site The Great Lake actually incorporates a few of the trends we’ve discussed here, it’s Neo-brutalism done really well but is also a great example of creative use of typography, and scrollytelling.

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