Visual trends predictions for 2016


They are to images what meteorologists are to weather.

As part of the world’s leading visual media company, a global team of creative researchers and art directors understand image trends in a way few others can, predicting and producing the type of imagery brands will need in the year ahead.

They analyse data from the millions of images searched and licensed via and track how these visuals are used in everything from advertising to movies, social media to magazines.

Want to know where the visual zeitgeist is headed? Getty Images Director of Visual Trends Pam Grossman knows. She recently led a webinar on the topic, which explored the art and science behind her team’s 2016 predictions. Here’s a high-level look:

Outsider In

People who push the envelope and visuals that break with tradition will be widely embraced, as popular taste becomes more daring.

Extended Human

Our notion of personhood is expanding, as we harness the power of technology in all areas of our lives. The parameters of man and machine are starting to blur, and the results are riveting.

Divine Living

As brands focus on values, reflection and revelation become front and centre, with consumers shifting their focus to more meaningful consumption.


Brands will harness the power of the ugly, messy, sweaty, visceral aesthetic. It’s a rebellion against the order of everyday life that revels in the physicality and soul of human nature.

Silence vs. Noise

This trend focuses on making space for consumers to breathe and reconnect in a cluttered marketplace, engaging our emotions and spirit with visual haikus.


As we look to visually represent the multifaceted lives we experience in the digital age, the opportunities for creativity are endless. This trend focuses on surreal graphic imagery and plays with ideas of infinity, duality and multiplicity.

Go deeper into the 2016 trends. Watch the webinar.

This is a guest post by Maria Dal Pan Dias, Getty Images Editorial Director (Content Marketing).

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