Learning any new skill is a challenge, including making digital art. Becoming a graphic designer is hard enough on its own, as the newcomer has to focus on various mechanical aspects that graphic design requires. After that comes the client and the task, which can be changed multiple times due to the client’s wishes.
A beginner designer has their hands full already, which begs the question, should they even try to focus on design trends? Let us approach this dilemma from different perspectives.
Trends Are Pointers
Trends are simple pointers as to what is happening in the world and what some people prefer more than others. If the trends are very popular, then by all means, hopping on the train is the way to go, unless it is already too late and the market is oversaturated.
Trendiness in design doesn’t mean a lot if the trend is implemented just for the sake of it. A trend should be implemented carefully, so that it fits the overall design. Designing around a trend as a beginner might not be the best thing to focus on.
Beginners Have a Lot to Learn
As most beginners, those in graphic design have to focus on the basics. If the trends fit the basics, then they make sense, in that context. Some trends are far from what a beginner should be focusing on. It is okay to look up trends once in a while, but it is more important to work on the foundations prior to trying to pick up trends and predict the future.
As a beginner, everybody’s goal is to get the fundamentals right. That eases the entire process of learning. Beginners shouldn’t waste energy on trends if they take away from their work.
Trends Can Inspire
If the current graphic design trends are inspirational to the beginner, they can be an area of focus. The mentor should examine the beginner’s work and see whether they are implementing the basics right and whether the trends are complementing the work or making it worse. Sometimes, design dissonance makes sense, but beginners often don’t know how to implement it.
Trends Might Mislead
Trends might be the right way to go if there is a way of using them. A beginner might not know what to do with a trend, or they might think that the trend by itself is enough and will make a project stand out.
This can turn into a disaster. Focusing on trends is not important if the student does not know what to do with a trend.
Beginners are in a difficult position. They want to do more and more, but they need to learn and master the basics. Graphic design trends can be helpfuls, even to beginners, but they shouldn’t be a priority.