What Is Flat Design?
Graphic designers that use the minimalistic style known as "flat design" typically employ two-dimensional components such as simple geometric forms, typography, and solid colors.
You'll frequently find examples of flat design in the interfaces of websites, mobile apps, and desktop programs.
Flat Design History
Flat design's origins can be traced back to the 1950s when Minimalism in art and architecture was popular. Minimalism was all about removing all unnecessary or distracting elements that were not essential to creating the artwork to keep it clean, simple, and minimalistic with as little clutter as possible.
The minimalist movement made way for many flat visual styles that included simple shapes with little decoration. However, it was not until the 1980s, when Apple first introduced its Macintosh operating system and the first iMacs, that this design style got popularized and took over.
The first flat design style that caught on was the neon iMac style. This was pioneered by a San Francisco-based company in 1987.
At the time, they made a lot of computers and video games for kids. The neon style uses bright colors to create a cheerful, happy atmosphere. All their products use bright colors such as yellow, purple, and blue. Using bright colors in designs would make things easier to see and, therefore, easier to use, reducing any distractions that come with utilizing flat designs.
The iMac's design was revolutionary because it was advertised as a computer for everyone and anyone. From children to parents, anyone could use it. They wanted to create something simple and easy for all people of all ages to use and enjoy.
Benefits Of A Flat Design
Using a flat design aesthetic has many positive effects in the field of graphic design, including:
Ease of Use: Flat design is characterized by its simplicity and minimalism, making it a breeze to comprehend and navigate. Because of this, it can be used effectively in the design of software and app interfaces, where an intuitive layout is essential. When it comes to web and software development, as well as print media, flat designs are incredibly versatile.
Speed: Faster loading times and less resource usage characterize flat design, which avoids the use of complicated visual effects like gradients, textures, and drop shadows. This makes it an excellent choice for usage in online and mobile design, where quick load times are essential for a pleasant user experience.
The responsiveness: A flat design is enhanced by its ability to conform to displays of varying widths and heights. This makes it an excellent choice for use in responsive web design, as the layout must adapt to the screen size of a number of devices.
Accessibility: The use of basic shapes, clear writing, and high contrast colors makes flat design more accessible to those with visual impairments.
Branding: Flat design also provides more leeway in terms of branding, as the basic and minimalistic features may be readily modified to match a company's trademark colors and typefaces.
Flat Design and Color
Color is a powerful tool for adding interest to a flat design and directing the eye. One of the defining features of the flat design aesthetic is the use of flat, plain colors. When working with a flat design, color is very important because it is often the only element that can be altered after the design creation. The use of color is crucial in making a flat design appealing.
By definition, flat design has a restricted color palette that prioritizes readability and contrast. Buttons and calls to action are commonly highlighted with bright, eye-catching hues.
Color gradients are sometimes used in flat design as well, however they are typically much more subtle than they are in skeuomorphic design.
More white space is used in flat design, which contributes to its minimalist aesthetic. White space is used to make the design more readable and easier to traverse. One way to include color into your design is to utilize it as a solid backdrop color against other elements. You can achieve a seamless look by layering colors of a similar hue.
As a whole, in flat design, color is utilized to pique the user's attention and lead them through the interface without detracting from the design's otherwise simple appearance.
Flat Design Examples
Lots of websites and magazines use a flat design aesthetic. To illustrate the versatility of flat design, below are some examples from other fields:
- Apple, Microsoft, and Google all utilize a web design style called "flat" because it is "flat," or uncluttered, clean, and easy to use.
- The flat style used by Instagram, Snapchat, and WhatsApp, among many others, is popular in the mobile app industry because it is minimalistic and simple to navigate on smartphones with little screen real estate.
- Flat design is widely used in the user interface of software, making programs like Adobe Illustrator simple to use.
- Flat design is frequently utilized in infographics to present even the most intricate data in an accessible and engaging fashion.
- Brochures, posters, and business cards are all examples of flat design in use, as they are simple, clean, and easy to read.
- Flat design is also employed in In product packaging design, since it is simple, clean, and easy to see, which aids buyers in understanding what they're buying.
As you can see, the applications of flat design are vast. Flat design excels in situations when clarity, readability, and usability are paramount.
Flat design is one of the most commonly used styles of design today. It is minimalistic and uses a lot of white space, which is why it is so popular. Flat designs are a great way to focus on using colors that you feel will create a welcoming atmosphere for your user.
By using flat designs, you can increase interactivity between your users and increase the professionalism level of your website or application. You can also use flat designs in print applications, websites, and software if it makes sense.