If you have worked with graphic designers in the past, you have probably heard about white space. This is an element of design that is super important, yet I personally find myself struggling to convince business owners to utilize it at all.

In my opinion, white space is the most underappreciated element of design! I get why people balk at using so much white space when you’re paying for a certain size of ad in a publication, or you only have so much room on a direct mail piece, because you would think that cramming as much information on there as possible gets you more bang for your buck!

In reality though, you’re doing your message more harm than good by not using white space effectively.

In this post, I’ll explain what white space is and discuss the benefits of using it in print design as well as web design.


What is White Space?

White space, or negative space, refers to the areas in a design that are left empty or unmarked. It’s the breathing room around and between the elements of a composition, and it plays a crucial role in shaping the overall aesthetic and effectiveness of a design.


Do I Really Need to Use White Space?

Let’s explore why white space is so essential and how it can elevate your designs.


Creating Visual Balance

White space is vital for achieving visual balance within a design. When elements are too crowded together, a composition can feel cluttered and overwhelming. White space allows for a sense of order and harmony by providing separation between different elements. It helps guide the viewer’s eye and ensures that each element has room to stand out and be appreciated on its own merits.


Enhancing Readability and Focus

In graphic design, especially in areas like typography and editorial layouts, white space is key to enhancing readability. Ample spacing between lines of text and around blocks of content makes it easier for readers to navigate and absorb information. White space also draws attention to important elements or focal points within a design, such as headlines, images, or call-to-action buttons, by framing them with emptiness.


Amplifying Your Message

White space isn’t just about emptiness; it’s about amplifying the impact of the elements it surrounds. By allowing certain elements to breathe, white space draws attention to their shapes, colors, and textures. This technique can make a design more visually striking and memorable. Think of how a single object placed against a vast white background immediately commands attention—it’s the power of simplicity at work.

Examples of White Space in Designs

Here are a few designs Barnyard Marketing has created that use white space including a social media graphic, a business card and a flyer design.

Home and Closet Goshen Indiana Business Card Design
DM Roofing & Construction Shipshewana Indiana Flyer Design

Tips for Using White Space Effectively


Here are a few practical tips for incorporating white space into your designs:

Experiment with Proportions: Adjust the amount of white space around different elements to find the right balance and impact.

Consider the Context: White space requirements can vary depending on the medium (e.g., print vs. web) and the overall design objectives.

Embrace Minimalism: Simplify your compositions by removing unnecessary elements and focusing on what truly matters.

Use White Space Intentionally: Every bit of white space should serve a purpose—whether it’s improving readability, guiding the eye, or enhancing aesthetics.

In conclusion, white space is not just empty space; it’s a fundamental design element that shapes the entire user experience. When used thoughtfully and strategically, white space can transform a design from good to exceptional, making it more functional, memorable, and emotionally resonant. So, embrace the power of white space in your next design project and see how it elevates your creative vision!


Need help with graphic design? Barnyard Marketing has experienced designers that will help you bring your vision to life. Contact us to get your project started.