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Visual tendencies that will set the trend in 2017 according to Getty Images

Since a few years, Getty Images has become an authentic oracle to consult for future visual tendencies. Technology and virtual reality; the emergence of a new strong and decided woman model; the absence of filters on images –closer to journalism–; a strong presence of color; the search for innocence; and the presence of global neighbors are six aspects that according to the image bank we should keep in mind in advertisement, design and communication during the next few years.

Getty Images has presented their foresight on visual tendencies. The study predicts the tendencies, both macro and micro, that will influence on design, publicity and communication of branding during 2017. Besides, this agency anticipates and predicts visual language in a social and cultural level that will get in tuning with most consumers in the next years.


The global team of visual anthropologists and art directors from Getty Images has focused on six main tendencies. These were selected with an extensive research that has taken into account the searches on Getty Images website. Each year they register 400 millions of downloaded files, analysis of images used in advertisement and pop culture and constant changes in consumers’ behavior in global society. All these data have been thoroughly examined to define a visual integration of style image, as well as the visual technics used to create an impact next year.

Tendencies offer information, inspiration and influence on art directors, editors and artists from all over the world. Different creative industries get involved, such as journalism, brand communication and advertising. Getty Images is pioneer in this field and has being making predictions on tendencies for over 20 years. Its forecasts have anticipated visual movements on genders, social conscience, design, technology, traveling and much more.

These are the 2017 visual tendencies Getty Images experts identified:


Virtual Reality


Technology is widening our world, helping us to expand our senses and allowing us to go further those two dimension images and getting immerse in a visual world. Technology and images are converging in a vertex that will take visual narrative to endless levels. With the use of VR, brands will be able to tell their story in a more effective way, developing emotional experiences. This way the bound with consumers will go beyond products and services.

Decided Woman


There is a new woman in the visual scene and she’s here to stay. Her emergent figure is the junction of different tendencies that we have come identifying during the past five years. This woman breaks with conventionalisms and breaks down walls; she’s worry about what her capacities more than about her physical appearance. She’s all about being not pretending to be. She’s tough, tenacious, has her goals clear and doesn’t hesitate to overtake any task. She’s a woman that doesn’t allow anybody to intimidate or underestimate her; she also fights to defend her believes.

No filters


There are many brands that are adopting the esthetics of photojournalism to connect with a younger audience. A visual window with no artifices allows them to tell their story in a more spontaneous way. The tendency of No Filters is the antithesis of lustrous and excessively “produced” advertisement; it illustrates a new direction in commercial photography towards a documental like esthetics. This kind of images breaks with the uniform visual hubbub to offer something different to the client, an authentic visual moment that makes you think.

Color Wave


Color has stopped to be a simple component of image to become an absolute protagonist. Our growingly visual sophistication allows us to use colors breaking the established rules and trying chromatic combinations that are normally perceived as unnatural. The Wave Tendency focuses on the ability of image creators to get rid of the traditional color palette and conventional ideas of what “things should be”. This way they have the opportunity of taking the most unlikely colors to serve as guide in designs and compositions.

New Innocence


More and more, consumers demonstrate to have knowledge about visual culture. They’re starting to ignore those communications too “prepared” that social networks offered in the past. Now, they’re embracing more irreverent, free and natural messages. Brands are also getting on board with the New Innocence tendency where you can find spontaneous, playful and sometimes even uncomfortable visual representations. There are images that not always have to be aligned with “the brand”, but are necessarily to be fresh and even have a crazy touch. And if they have a little of humor, better.

Global Neighbors


The unstoppable growth of people, goods and information flow in the world is having a transformative effect on society as well as in self-perception of the individual. Global Neighbors Tendency embraces this constant flow of people and things, focusing on our collective cultural identities. Gradually, our place of origin will define us less and less, while our believes and people we’re connected with will take on this task. As brands begin to fit our complex consumer’s identity, we’ll see flourishing a great quantity of transcultural identities representing a world with no social borders.

“In a constantly changing visual world, our efforts to offer clients the most suitable images would be pointless if we didn’t research why those changes occur and where they’re heading to” Andrew Saunders, vice-president of Creative in Getty Images.

“2017 visual tendencies represent an inflexion point in several areas. On one hand the skepticism regarding virtual reality has been substituted by global acceptance and enthusiasm. Nobody doubts anymore that VR is an important technological tool that will open us the doors to a new visual universe. On the other hand, we have seen that the millennial generation has begun to enroll in mainstream. This is because brads have adopted a cruder esthetic narrative with no artifices, giving a realistic touch to their communications and using a visual style closer to the editorial world. Besides, when elaborating our research we have kept in mind data analysis to understand social and cultural tendencies. We expect our report on visual tendencies to serve companies in developing their communications towards a contemporary approach”.

Getty Images’ 2017 visual tendencies are part of the annual creative guide of the Creative In Focus Company. In it the reader will find a deeper analysis on visual tendencies as well as a consistent study about the search data. There are also essays on taboo normalization, myths and mismatches between brand communication and the millennial consumer. The advertisement focuses on some of the world’s most talented image creators and also on some out of the ordinary photographic work. This way they have discovered unique behind scenes of Mongolian wrestling and traditional American rodeos of gay community.       

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