A Guide to Using Negative Space



Intro to Negative Space

Have you ever looked at a design, realizing that you liked it or didn’t like it, but you weren’t sure why? What about it did you like? What didn’t you like? Could you put your finger on it? Most likely, the reason behind your opinion was because of the amount of negative space it has.

negative-space

What is Negative Space?

Negative space is the empty or open space around an object that defines it. In layman’s terms, it is the breathing room around the subject that determines how appealing it looks. The positive space would be the object itself. The negative space would the the background. The majority of people don’t like it when designs are too crowded. Giving your subject and other objects plenty of negative space gives them much more definition. Design elements don’t visually melt into a single large blob. Instead, elements are broken down into sections, making them easier to process the information in discrete chunks.They are more distinct and more defined, having a definite beginning and ending.Visually, this helps your mind to break down the information into manageable pieces. This is much easier that trying to process the entire design and all of its parts at once. Lets take a look at a few examples.

Why Negative Space is So Effective

Utilizing negative space and leveraging it to your advantage is an excellent way to gain a lot of attention for a design piece. When someone looks at a piece designed with well-composed negative space, the viewer can effortlessly evaluate and appreciate the design. The key factor is that they don’t have to work too hard. A healthy balance between great negative space and intrigue will entice the viewer to spend extra time looking at your design.

Designs with negative space are usually very simple, but the viewer can tell that there is more to the piece. A creative negative space design is more rewarding for the viewer; they get a feeling of inclusion because they figured out a subtle hidden message or image. People, by nature, like to feel included and informed. They enjoy feeling of being privy to inside information, so when they see a creative use of negative space within logo or design, it sticks out in their mind. This is a highly effective way to add appeal to people with your designs.

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