Asian Paints is India’s largest paint company and ranked amongst the top ten decorative coating companies in the world. Colour Next is a research based annual Trend Forecasting initiative by Asian Paints. It’s a process to predict color that are likely to have the most influence on Indian interiors in the upcoming year.

The research aimed at spotting, capturing and defining trends that eventually manifest into highly impactful home decor themes. It focused at exploring the ongoing shifts and major happenings in the Indian society that may hold potential to affect and alter consumer behavior. The objective was to create comprehensive themes that give an overview of the current trend atmosphere with a very Indian centric outlook.


The trend forecasting process was divided into 3 phases. Our team of 5 members kicked off the 1st phase with working on secondary research and visual scanning of images. The first phase also involved conducting Focus Group Discussions and Expert Interviews. After the collaborative workshop with the client, during the Phase 2, we proceeded to hold the Thought Leader's workshop and the  Articulation workshop. The Phase 3 involved conducting the Creative Visual workshop and final theme selection.


During the entire process, I was actively involved with the visual scanning of images. This included collecting a pool of images through various  online and offline sources and analyzing patterns visually by tagging the images. The next step involved creating mood-boards to capture the initial set of themes and directions which could possibly influence the style and trend of the upcoming year. Each theme was supported by a title, write-up, keywords and a mood-board to understand the underlying trend.


While tagging the pool of images to analyze patterns, we used the STEM approach. This involved tagging the images under the categories of Space, Colour, Material, Type, Style, Emotion and Meaning. These tags helped to create work clouds to understand the prominent patterns and trends at play.


As part of the research, we held several expert workshops to bring together leading artists, designers, editors, filmmakers, creative directors and others from all over the country. The expert workshops gauged at the consumer sentiments and societal moods through open ended interactions in an informal group setting.

Through the conversations and discussions, we  gained  insights around various trends that experts associate with. The discussion not only helped us to understand the finer aspects and perceptions around the emerging societal trends, but to capture new directions and patterns.

I was in charge of contacting the experts, explaining to them the aim of the project and coordinating and managing all the logistics for the events. Prior to each workshop, I contacted several experts and ensured their availability for the event and also managed their stay in whichever city we were travelling to. This experience helped me polish my communication and coordinating skills and learn how to multi-task in a formal environment.


At the end of all our workshops and research, we arrived at four final themes which were Bot is Human, Local Pride, Slow Living and Elixir. Each of these themes had been prominent in our secondary and primary research and experts concluded these were the most appropriate trends for the upcoming year.