There is no denying that design is a major component of any project. And while design is vitally important, printing is no less significant in achieving the perfect finalized product. After all, printing is a means of bringing the design to life, and if the print is lackluster, it can turn a stunning design into an eyesore. Over the decades printing technologies and methods have evolved, bringing about a new set of trends that can help you make the most of your design. Here are 5 printing trends that every designer should know.
Personalized Digital Printing
It may come as a surprise that digital printing is trending, as it has been in existence for decades, but this is most certainly the case. In fact, digital printing makes up a substantial proportion of all printed goods, and it is still increasing in demand. So why choose digital printing over other methods, such as lithograph printing? That’s simple – it’s much faster and far more economical, especially for low-volume print runs. What’s more, it’s an efficient way to create personalized products, as the printer can quickly be adapted to meet any design needs.
There are a plenty of examples of major companies using digital printing to personalize their products. For example, Coca-Cola took personalization to a new level by labeling millions of bottles, each with one of a hundred different first names. Similarly, the Nestle Purina PetCare Company gave dog owners the option of having their dog’s photo printed directly on a bag of their product. This type of personalized printing can go a long way in enhancing the experience for customers.
Crafty Designs Using Once Outdated Technologies
Even as digital printing is increasing in popularity, older and more traditional technologies like thermography are making a comeback. These once outdated printing methods can make for a unique way of enhancing a design. For instance, thermography, which is a type of print that is raised off the medium, can help add another dynamic to the design.
In this case, not only will customers be able to see the print, but they can feel it, and this is perfect for items such as business cards and invitations. In addition, embossing and debossing (raised or recessed print and designs on paper material) are also being utilized as a means of creating customized designs. And just like thermography, embossing and debossing are perfect for smaller items like invitations.
The rise of the internet has caused static designs to fall out of favor, as consumers are increasingly engaging in the interactive environment that the online world provides. This has brought about the introduction of interactive print. Interactive print encompasses a broad spectrum of different design qualities, such as the use of industrial textures, and the combination of wood and metallic elements. In fact, industrial textures are emerging as a popular trend in tradeshow displays. However, the concept of interactive print has been taken to a new level with augmented reality technologies.
Augmented reality (AR) offers a view of the existing environment that is enhanced through the use computers and smartphones. AR provides a boost to sensory output by adding graphics, sounds, and video to existing objects. In line with this, many companies are building apps in which users can view their advertising designs while looking through their smartphone. These apps will add additional movement to the ads making a far more appealing experience for consumers. One notable example of augmented reality design comes from a Volkswagen ad campaign where users could view a VW driving through a billboard using a custom developed app.
Going Against Digital
The internet may have brought about the digital age, but there are many designers that are straying from digital marketing by opting for printed materials instead. Printed designs offer a relief for those who are growing tired of digital displays and it provides a more authentic feel. Not only this, but print has been shown to perform better than its digital counterpart.
One of the areas that are making use of the advantages of print is books and magazines. It is not uncommon for books to include more intricate, eye-catching designs, in addition to high-quality bindings. In a similar transition, magazines advertisers are dedicating more time to creating multicolored and imaginative pieces, rather than designs that are simplistic and, often times, boring. The push for print is being driven by an ever-growing community of artistic professionals and students who are passionate about returning to the more traditional roots of design.
Embracing Change While Sticking with Tradition
It is no secret that design techniques have changed drastically over the past decade and this has brought about a revolution in printing. No longer will plain, overly simplistic designs do the trick. With this in mind, there are several new printing trends that you will want to take into consideration when creating designs.
Digital printing offers designers a chance to easily personalize products with an efficiency that was previously unheard of. When coming up with a design that will be run with a digital printer, designers should make certain components of the piece interchangeable so that differing text, such as names or specific words, can be personalized. By making such a design, you can help engage customers and give them an experience that hits them on a personal level.
Returning to more traditional ways of printing, such as thermography and embossing, is also rising in popularity among designers. Old-fashioned technologies, such as these, are capable of producing raised lettering and recessed designs, which are perfect for handheld items, like business cards and invitations.
On the other hand, interactive print is an emerging technology that has yet to be fully embraced by the community. With interactive technologies, it is possible for companies to develop apps that are based on augmented reality concepts, which can take advertisements to new heights by incorporating state-of-the-art graphics and sounds.
If you have become burned out from digital displays and ads, then you may want to join the ever-growing community of print enthusiasts who are revitalizing print by developing highly colorful and imaginative designs for media such as books and magazines. Whether you are a veteran designer looking for new ideas, or you are just getting started in design, you will surely want to consider these 5 printing trends when designing your next piece.