Powering positivity with an injection of colour

By John Blyth, Marketing and Communications Manager, Graphic Communications Group, Ricoh Europe

Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky said, ‘Colour is a power which directly influences the soul’. There could not be a better way to sum up some of the colour trends in graphic art design for 2022.

How we feel about the world at the moment is something Pantone has tried to capture with its colour of the year. For the first time it has ushered in a new year with a completely new shade. Very Peri, a vibrant periwinkle blue with a violet red undertone, symbolises “the changes the world is experiencing as we look to move beyond the isolation and uncertainty of the pandemic”.

Other trends shaped by the pandemic have been highlighted by the design community and here below are some that stand out:

1. Candy colours

Online design magazine We And The Colour says vibrant candy colour will help make a strong, positive statement in these uncertain times.

Creative network Behance agrees, saying vibrant candy colour schemes bring positivity and grab the viewer’s attention with striking graphic design creations. They translate into multiple graphic design fields such as web design, animation, illustration and typography. It also highlighted the resurgence of risograph art with artists and graphic designers finding clever ways to recreate effects digitally and bring vibrant colours and perfect imperfections to their artwork, which leads neatly to the next trend.

2. Bold and Bright

Infographic and graphic design software developer Venngage says it is bold and bright colours that will be shaping design in 2022. Bold colours, contrasted with lighter text, will make images pop. Brands will be pairing their bold backgrounds with equally colourful icons and illustrations. They will make use of the fact that icons share messages at a glance, and mean the same thing in multiple languages, to easily reach audiences. In 2021 the emphasis was on flat icons and illustrations. In 2022 there will be a mix of both flat and 3D icons with the primary connection being how colourful they are.

3. Exploring the colour spectrum

Online design tutorial provider Envato Tuts+ says designers will be encouraged to explore the extremes of the colour spectrum in the months ahead, whether that is a multi-hued palette of rich brights or a brave application of strong, singular colour. It pointed to bold colour’s ability to enliven even the simplest of designs, complementing minimal typography and investing designs with a psychological power. It suggested trying an all-red scheme across a range of print media or use a range of rich, complementary hues across packaging designs.

4. Pastels

The number one trend for 99designs, the global creative platform from Vista, is adventurous pastels. It expects to see more designs that give pastels a twist. That twist could be pairing them with geometric shapes, line illustrations or displaying them in full-on, funky patterns in the style of maximalist design.

2022 promises to be a year when creative impulses will be unleashed, perhaps more boldly than ever before, as designers tap into and reflect a newfound optimism. 2022 is going to be a colourful ride. Strap in.