Why is white space so important in design? The question comes up often, and finding the right answer isn’t always easy. My main urge is to simply reply “Because it is an element of good design” – but that doesn’t do the trick. So I wanted to go a bit further in explaining the element and showing some examples of its power – hopefully by the end of this we will have a better answer to the question.
What is this thing?
White space is the space that surrounds an object in a image, graphic or text. Line height, spacing, padding, etc.. can be considered white space. White space is as effective in a layout as the content itself, and helps to define the boundaries of positive space and brings balance to a layout to enhance the experience.
The last part says it all, White space is as effective in a layout as the content itself – and to convince someone of this is half the battle, but as a visual thinker, showing that someone an example should be enough, right? Not always, but here are a few examples of where white space has benefited user experience:
White space obviously plays a huge role in usability and as Mobile Designers we are always trying to achieve a great User Experience – so white space will always play a large part in current mobile standards.
It’s power is clear, and the more we attempt to get rid of whitespace by increasing the size of advertisements, not following grid based design or shunning the importance of line height, padding and space, the more apparent its power becomes. It all comes back to a simple reply “Because it is an element of good design”.