2021 Design Trends and their use in presentations

After 2020, the year when every month was different, we don’t know what to expect of 2021. The world started focusing on health and all of us contributed towards spreading awareness. One message united many brands and individuals and it’s still integrated in communication strategies: Stay home. Be safe.

Many creatives were affected the past year, it’s not easy to create and come up with ideas when bad news are circulating everywhere. But as content is consumed at a higher speed, people and businesses have to adapt faster and designs have to reflect the needs of the customers. 

After thorough navigation on the internet, looking for new design trends and also for old ones here is what the creative community is expecting this year, with our part of integrations in presentations. 


3D design 

Not new, but always special. 3D designs have their unique way of speaking to you. It has been evolving in the past years, using technology and virtual reality to attract your attention. A versatile trend that takes many such as illustrations, motion design, typography for a greater impact. 

by Eslam Mohamed

via Dribbble

via Dribbble

via Behance

How to use 3D designs in presentations

Incorporating 3D elements into your presentation can help you highlight anything you want, just by arranging them one on top of the other. Your audience will see what you want them to see, but be careful, such effects can distract them from the message. 

Quick and simple 3D objects are also to be found directly in Microsoft PowerPoint. They will bring your slides to a new level and show your audience the work you put in preparing the presentation. 


Symbol revival 

Well-known symbols can better express your brand’s personality or values. People want to be challenged, to experience designs on more levels and symbols help connect with an universal language.

You can change the entire meaning of the slide with a meaningful icon. We’ve also seen modernized symbols, like Frida's Mermaid Makeover or Eliza Osmo’s medieval crest. 

by Mariam Metreveli

by Saberin Hasan 

How to use Symbols in presentations

A simple symbol can set the mood of a presentation. Integrate a recognizable symbol in your presentation and transmit your message to your audience through multiple channels. 


Retro futurism 

New generations are starting to take an interest in styles of previous decades. Going back to the origins of their grandparents and adding their own perspective of present or even future. As it’s hard to tell exactly what’s happening right now, a combination of past with how we imagine the future gives you the familiar feeling, but also one of progress. 

In these uncertain times nostalgia and the promise of a better tomorrow blend perfectly. 

via Dribbble

via Behance

How to use Retro Futurism in presentation

Presenting your new solution,idea or concept in retro style will give your audience a sense of optimism and comfort. They will associate it with the good old days yet to come. You can achieve this through colors, backgrounds or texture. 


Authentic representation 

As we already talked about the fast pace content is consumed and the deeper connection that people favor in these times, authenticity should also be part of your designs. Experiential design has gained a lot of popularity lately and designers started to use diverse characters in their work. 

Brands already started using authentic stories and will continue to do so, searching for ways to create meaningful content.

by Tharinne Borba

by Ricardo Santos

How to use Authentic Representations in your presentations

This design trend goes hand in hand with the Power of Storytelling. Stop associating your idea with “The next Uber” or “The next Airbnb”, you are unique and so is your story. Use that in your advantage, your audience is more likely to resonate with an authentic story, rather than an already popular one. 


Irreverent characters 

There is a shift from abstract designs to a more personal approach through peculiar characters. Brands are expressing their personality using animated objects or hand drawn characters. The more expressive the traits of the personification are, the more memorable will be. 

via 99Designs

by Victoria Rebel

How to use Irreverent Characters in your presentation

Focus on the one unique trait that you want your audience to remember and build on that. Make them the center of your presentation or use them as a background. 

Comics and pop art 

Pop culture is one of the strongest cultures nowadays and its influence can be seen in all industries. Based on halftones and old vibes, designers create graphics that take you in the comics universe. Using new technology and modern techniques they can transform anything in a superhero or a pop icon. 

via Behance

by Daniel Bodea

How to use Comics and Pop art in your presentation

Go for the vintage design and win over the pop culture fans. Backgrounds and texture can make a difference in your presentation, and PowerPoint is a versatile tool that can help you with that. 

Remember that every story needs a hero and it can as well be made in a comics style. 


Elements of nature

I don’t know about you, but this year I saw more people buying home plants than ever. In lockdowns everybody wanted to be closer to nature. The trend is also towards organic food and conserving nature, so designers went with the wave. Using natural lights, earthly colors and nature elements they create peaceful and relaxing moods. 

via Behance

via Behance

How to use Nature elements in your presentation

With most of the presentations happening online you can as well arrange yourself a corner with plants as your background. They are a great conversation starter.

As for natural elements in your powerpoint presentation you can rely on flower motifs or even go with mountains, trees, beach or birds, whatever you feel like it represents you and your topic. 


Blur and grain

Gradients are still very popular in design, but now we find them in synergy with other effects, such as grain filters and blur. This kind of effect will give your designs a depth of emotion and a sense of authenticity. 

via Dribbble

by Kasia Bojanowska

How to use Blur and grain in presentations

We’ve played before with texture on designs and we are very excited to see how a grain background will look on presentations. Go for a more playful presentation and appeal to the creative side of your audience. They will feel appreciated and show you more respect for the presentation.

Would you like to see a PowerPoint tutorial on how to add blur and grain to your presentation?


Socially conscious design

People are influenced by what they see. After 2020, the year where we faced many challenges, the global pandemic, anti-racial movements, environmental crisis, brands needed to include in their designs a call to action. They evaluated their positions and spoke out for what they stand. 

There were a few months when the message to stay safe and stay indoor had to be transmitted everywhere, so designers were the messengers of such urges. 

via Behance

via CocaCola

How to use Socially conscious design in presentations

We started for some time now to use more diverse characters in our presentations, from gender, ethnicity or culture. Another way to include socially conscious messages in your design is to have a slide dedicated to encourage people to stay safe with safety measures or other call to action. 


What do you think are the trends that will catch on in 2021?


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