2023-24 Season Design Predictions in Sport


With the 2022/2023 sports seasons well underway, the team here at Azzuu have been looking ahead to see which design trends we believe are going to be taking centre stage and continuing to push the sports design world into new arenas throughout the 2023/24 season.


Mixed Media 3D Design 

3D Design is solidifying itself as one of the go-to mediums for designers, with more creatives and brands starting to engage with the style. The combination of the current fever pitch of interest in AI and easy to use apps, means that 3D design has never been more accessible. Growth of Augmented Reality and AI encourages the progression of 3D design by creating a playground for more experimentation and combining both reality and digital design. 

As the use of motion and video dominates algorithms, animated 3D elements will capture fans’ attention, increasing engagement through video as attention spans shorten. In the sports world we are likely to see the utilisation of player footage combined with 3D futuristic elements, mixing realities as a method of capturing consumer’s attention. Clubs and organisations can use these on-brand 3D elements to create immersive graphics featuring imagery and even video content of their players. Clever combinations of green screen footage and 3D elements will intertwine the real world athlete with the 3D environment, opening up a new space for clubs, brands and organisations to get creative.



Experimental Typography

As full imagery was noticeably favoured by algorithms in 2022, clubs and organisations will look to more playful Typography this year to help establish their brand identity, and even push the boundaries of their current identity. Though the image will still dominate, there will be a departure from purely functional fonts, with the use of augmented typography, outlined fonts, bold headlines, and glitched text adding a liveliness and depth to imagery.

Previously the use of image focused content for sports teams has been used to create more emotive content for the fans. Whereas this surging increase in creative typography is likely to be adopted in sport by teams and sports brands as a way of having a great identifiable brand and voice. The combination of full imagery with playful typography is likely to be adopted by sport as a way of maintaining a strong and unique brand and voice, whilst maximising the popularity of their athletes image.



Y2K/ Retro influence

After influencing fashion and music, sport design will also start to lean more into the y2k trend, adopting the use of bright obnoxious colours in fonts and colourful retro illustrations. This sweet sense of nostalgia provided by the y2k trend, as well as the playful, fun angle it gives content, also helps to lessen the business side of sports/ the brand itself and focuses on the community of fans, providing content which gets a more light hearted response. 

Y2k adds to the Nostalgia trend which is ubiquitous within Sports design. Whether it's design inspired by Rave culture, 70s retro, or even taking inspiration from the team lineup screen on Championship Manager 97/98, tapping into these cultural epochs is a great way to connect more with a fanbase.


Character Design

The use of digital character design continues to fascinate audiences with its fun, limitless possibilities. The amalgamation of film footage and illustrations/ animations continues to have a presence in the sports design industry, and is a brilliant way to transform what could be seen as a standard piece of footage, into shorts or a longer feature video. These are often energetic edits and engaging for the viewer/fan. 

After being used to great effect by organisations such as the NFL, highlighting player matchups and advertising games, illustrations of players have stepped away from being something you'd tend to see on fan accounts; to now being regular features of a team's creative campaign.

Character design allows sports organisations to create situations which would never usually be possible. With the explosion of Esports, the idea of certain characters entering other sports, games, fantasy worlds and other brand crossovers has been much more commonplace, and sports organisations are starting to harness their star players' image into digital characters and environments. 

There is no doubt even further crossover is on the horizon as sports organisations and teams will maximise their players' popularity through NFTs. Despite their unpopularity with some sports fans, the NFT boom and growth of the Metaverse will allow fans to collect illustrations and one-off artwork featuring their favourite players, 3D collectible cards, design and become their own club character and more.


Although trends are great to keep in mind when trying to establish your presence across social media; just because something is trending doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be used. Establishing your own brand and style that resonates with your unique fanbase is what will differentiate your content from the rest.

If you’re a club or organisation looking for help with your creative direction for the season ahead, get in touch with the team here at Azzuu and we’d love to discuss how we can help with all areas of digital content.

Written by Team Azzuu