Friday, December 21, 2018

Predicted Trends of 2018

At the end of 2017, I hosted an informal, totally random survey asking people what one trend they thought would be big in 2018. Now that we are nearing the end of the year, we can see if their predictions came true.

1. Roots. No, not the ones underground, but our origins. There was a strong theme related to "rekindling the love and passion of our roots." Whether that was a general idea or related to a specific art domain, it seems that people want to be in touch with all things handmade, non-commercial, and traditional.

2. Mixed Media. While mixed media is an art movement that goes back to the early 20th century, mixed media as we know it today is hot and getting hotter. Whether it is blending media, layering, combining found objects with commercial products, mixing fibers and paper, or other approaches, mixed media was on the mind of many of the artists who shared their trend predictions.

3. Fine Art Mediums. There has been a steady increase in recent years in the embrace of traditional, fine art mediums within the mixed media and craft worlds. This appears to be continuing with many people noting watercolor paints, portraiture, encaustics, drawing, color mixing, and referencing the color wheel as continuing and coming trends.

4. Nature. All things natural appear to be on the horizon. Think raw surfaces, such as wood, stone, tile and brick, metallics, eco dyeing, water themes, all-things rust, and botanicals.

5. Imperfection. Artists seem to be more and more comfortable embracing the imperfect and it looks like this trend will continue into 2018. Whether patchwork in textile arts, nonrealistic faces in portraiture, or repurposed and up cycled materials, imperfection is the perfect trend.

6. Paint. Paint seems to be the art supply of choice for 2018. Whether watercolors, acrylics or the hot trend of acrylic pouring, paint is definitely our passion.

7. Fiber Art. Perhaps reflecting the trend of returning to our roots, fiber art is everywhere. Stitchery, embroidery, hand sewing, quilting, fringe, patchwork, eco dyeing, and stitching on paper are all hot, hot, hot.

8. Text. Text-based art will continue to be big in 2018. Handwritten and creative lettering, asemic writing, journaling, and using text for story telling are likely to be seen everywhere in the coming year.

9. Journaling. The trend that keeps on giving. Journaling has not yet peaked and will continue strong next year. In recent years, a variety of approaches to journaling led the way. In 2018, bullet journaling and creating your own handmade journals seem to be in the lead.

10. Artivism. An historic trend that seems to reflect the times, creating art and craft for the purpose of political expression, activism, and protest has returned in a big way in 2017 and looks to continue into 2018.

So what do you think? Were any of these predictions correct? And if not...what trends were evident to you in 2018?


Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Mixed media, nature, fiber art, and journaling are all high on my list. I think they will continue into 2019, too. Although I am not especially a fan, planners seemed to take over the calendar world this year. And I believe that washi tape, which I originally saw as a flash in the pan, is definitely here to stay.

As for my own art, several people have asked why I have never submitted my mixed media or sewing art to magazines. I tell them because if I tried to list the products I used, they would compose of items I find in my back yard or in my neighbor's recycle bins. Most magazines want lists of products they carry, not rubbish found and pieced together. That's why for me, mixed media, eco-dyeing, and rust are+ here to stay.

Gwen Lafleur said...

I've definitely seen a lot of the themes from this list prevalent in the work shared this year... especially the fine art mediums and paint. We continue to see companies bringing out new products that are riffs or mixtures based in acrylic mediums, lots of watercolor as well, although the watercolor trend may be peaking. I don't see the paint and mediums in general going away any time soon, though... My thought is that for those getting into mixed media without any fine art background it makes it really easy for these companies to have pre-mixed products on the market (I'm thinking rust pastes, colored texture pastes, etc...) I think with the addition this year of acrylic pouring kits and easy marbling that this trend is probably still on the upswing.

I'm also still seeing a lot of nature - eco-dying, natural elements, etc... and I don't see that going away next year. I'm guessing that's an area that will continue to grow, especially as environmental concerns continue to be a hot topic. (Is environmentally friendly arting actually something that would fall under artivism?) Of course the look of the more natural products is also unique and there's a rawness and simultaneous softness that I find appealing.

Fiber arts and fabric were one of my picks for 2018 and I do think we've seen that, but maybe not as much as I'd thought or hoped. I do still think that it's being incorporated more and more as a different way to create layers and texture. Of course, whether it's a trend or not, I know that I'll continue to bring more of that into my work next year :)

Theresa said...

I think your list was pretty close to what I observed through other artists and watching my grand daughter (20) emerging as an artist with the beginnings of her own style. I chuckled to myself a lot as companies introduced "new" items that have been around a long time in the fine art world - pastes, texturing mediums, tools. For myself, I love mixed media and have been doing it for a while now. Also art journaling - and through Lifebook I have been exploring including people and words in my journaling which I have never been big on and still not sure I like. Bullet journaling is never off my desk, but it is functional not decorative. I do enjoy how it helps to keep me on task and gives me a place to mind map projects and prioritize all in one place. I am a list maker so that fits in well as well and I think that trend will be around a while. I am very glad to see the resurgence of fiber. When my body parts would cooperate, I loved working with fibers - art quilting to surface designs. Now I can admire and encourage my grand daughters efforts as she is teaching herself the skills she wants to learn. She didn't fall too far from the grandma tree that's for sure. Looking forward to your predictions for 2019. thanks as always for sharing.

Anita Houston The Artful Maven said...

I think you nailed it!!! It's a great list to keep in mind too for! Thanks so much, and Happy Christmas and New Year to you!!!