Should You Be Wary Of Trends?

I would like to start a discussion about following trends.

I was reading a chapter of AIGA Professional Practices in Graphic Design which was saying that the champions of design have signature styles and it is tragic that often companies want what is trendy and not what is truly artistic.

As a young designer it’s hard to not copy trends. Trends flood design annuals and competitions for us to see and get inspiration. Whether college taught me this or I just did it to pass, I tried to learn design by copying trends. I wanted to be versatile, so instead of focusing on my style, I learned several different ones. So here I am with several different styles in my portfolio, and trying to look like I understand the trends of the industry.

Image by Project M·A·R·C via Flickr

Trends seem to sell. In the last season of Project Runway, Gretchen won the competition partly because she had an eye on fashion trends. Companies seem to like trends and they hire designers; therefore, shouldn’t I be somewhat trendy?

Are trends really that bad? Perhaps they can kill our own creativity and voice. I came across Mitch Goldstein’s blog. He is getting his MFA at and writes, “Design should not be about regurgitating trends, having a cool studio, or being an AIGA member. Design should be about how the designer relates to the world around them, and how they translate that into interesting stuff.” His statement reminds me of my studio art roots. I believe that fine art should be an expression of the human experience in the world. By following trends, designers seem to lose their ingenuity.

Successful designers have a balance of understanding trends and having his or her own voice so they can sell and yet still be themselves. When you design, do you worry about good design or something original?


Self-Promotionals Could Only Be For Yourself.


Inside of Emergency Designer Card

After graduating college with my BFA in Graphic Design, I had a leave behind booklet for interviews and a self-promotional item that got me an A in the portfolio class. However since college, I haven’t really used either concept and after talking to a few seasoned graphic designers and employers, I will leave those projects in my portfolio. When I asked employers, “What would you do with a self-promotional item?” Several said, “Truthfully, I would throw it away. I have no place for it and if I did, I would forget it was there. It’s much easier for me to bookmark a website or resume.” Some of us are pack rats and won’t throw away something cool or inspirational, but others have no problem clearing out the unused objects. So as you hunt for a job, look for ways to get your name on the web and in emails.


My two favorite resources for the web are (for easy creating of websites) and (for web help and inspiration).

To see some my web portfolio go to see other people’s creativity with portfolios try starting at


Bath bombs on display in a shop.

Image via Wikipedia

I first discovered Lush on a little street in Oxford, England.  The black bottles tell me it’s chic, while the small signs remind me of a garden centers, and the handwritten font makes me feel like someone made these soaps by hand.

While I thought I had found a small local shop, turns out it’s quite international. Check out and visit different countries’ sites. Each one reflects the culture. I find it interesting to see how Lush molds its identity to cultural context.

As far as Lush product, by far my favorite is the bath bombs. I recently tried the Twilight Bomb and enjoyed a silky purple bath with iridescent glitter.