visual hierarchy, color, typography, readability In a time when we’re sounded by information, it is extremely important for designers to think about being clear with their layouts. We must remember to deliver a page that will get viewers attention, whether they’re purchasing something from a e-commerce site, reading a blog or just browsing news. The design must be readable, easy to understand, and easy to like. We need to remember that going for a simple layout instead of a complex one is the key to keeping readers interested. A lot of elements, images, colors and different shapes in a page can make your site look more like an infomercial and cause your readers leave because they’re uncomfortable. Whitespace is a well-known and highly touted design technique that has become increasingly trendy over the past few years. All of the most attractive website layouts these days have a uniquely minimalist aesthetic, and whitespace is always a major factor in anything minimalist. What is Whitespace? Whitespace, many times referred to as negative space, is the portion of a page left unmarked, the portion that is left blank, or (as Mark would quote) the empty space in a page. In web design terms, it’s the space between graphics, columns, images, text, margins and other elements. It is the space left untouched in order to smooth things out and transform a page into something elegant. It is also the blank space that reminds us that simpler designs are beautiful and that we don’t need to create a layout filled with text and graphical elements to deliver a clear and direct message. Even though we call it white space, it doesn’t mean the actual space must be white. The blank space may be filled with any color as long as it is free of any elements like text or images. Whitespace is also associated with elegance and sophistication since it is a way to organize text, organize elements and guide users attention to certain elements. To include more whitespace in your designs and deliver a better result, start thinking about every detail of a page. Think about margins, header, footer, menus, images and captions, items in a list, words and letters. Think about all of these elements and start leaving more space between them, always keeping in mind that you want to create something elegant and clear while improving user experience. A good experience means having space to breathe between elements and letting your reader’s eyes relax. Placing text in an 11px font and cramming it into the bottom of the page just won’t deliver the experience your readers crave. Advantage using Whitespace 1. Whitespace speeds up interaction 2. Guide users around your page 3. Whitespace highlights CTAs A Designer’s Goal The thing to remember about designing for the web is that you always want to deliver a great product to your clients. The way to do this is to properly use whitespace to give your client’s readers the best experience you can so that they keep coming back for more. If your project is a e-commerce site, you want the user to be able to navigate the site easily so that they keep buying products. If your project is a blog or news website, you want the user to enjoy reading so they can browse the articles without leaving the page. No matter what type of content the website is intended for, it’s important to use whitespace to keep the navigation clear and smooth, and to make sure the reader’s experience continues to “flow” properly. A designer’s main goal is to make the web look simple and to un-clutter the visual frenzy that often pollutes the web. We need to develop layouts that are easy on the eyes and that make people want to keep reading. Designers need to create simple designs, even if the task of creating something simple is very complex. Remember to use whitespace wisely to improve your designs. Keep in mind that to make text readable you need more space between letters and headers. Remember that instead of stacking tons of information to take advantage of the all of the space you have, you can have two or three nicely spaced columns showcasing only what is truly important to the readers. Conclusion In conclusion, I believe that the a good approach to using whitespace is to think about what you would like to see in a page. For example, would you like to read something that is squeezed in the page or you rather read something that is well-spaced? Would you like to have several different kinds of information taking up the whole page or would you rather have something that is properly organized? Thinking about improving user experience and focusing on content is always a good way to go when designing a website. Whitespace can certainly help you deliver the experience that your client’s readers will enjoy, which usually leaves your client happy with the work you’ve done. __________________________________________________________________ PREPARATION TO CREATE A LOGO BRAINSTORM Determine the primary function of your logo, a logo represents your brand through the use of shape, fonts, color and images. Being clear on why you need a logo can guide your design. Boost recognition, Is your company new or competing in a field with a lot of other players? Having a strong logo can help clients recognize your brand more readily. Create memorability, Consumers shop with their eyes and logos can be easier to remember than names, products and services. Over time, a customer comes to associate your logo with your company. Create trust, Part of bringing in and keeping clients is based on their willingness to trust you. A solid logo that conveys your honesty and integrity can help put clients at ease. Enhance admiration. If clients already have a good impression of your business, you can build on that by creating a logo that is well-regarded for its good looks, cleverness or effective simplicity. Attractive, memorable, recognition TARGET MARKET Think about your target market. It’s important to be clear on who your client is and customize the look of your logo to appeal to those who will be using your services. A logo for a florist shop could incorporate a whimsical font and a bright color scheme this wouldn’t work so well for an auto body repair garage. COLOR Follow the company’s color scheme. If your company has already established the use of certain colors in its signage, advertising and other materials, it’s important that those colors are reflected in the logo. Consistent use of colors builds familiarity. You want customers to be able to mentally “link” your logo to the company. If your company has branded itself with specific colors, the public will have developed a subconscious association with those colors. If you don’t yet have an established color scheme for your business, do some research on the psychology of colors so that you can choose appropriately. For example, red signifies strength, passion, energy and confidence but it can also signal danger. INSPIRED Be inspired by but don’t copy successful logos. While it might be tempting to create something that looks like your favorite corporate logo, it will communicate an unintended message to your audience that you’re lazy and uninspired. Look at logos of other business similar to yours. Ask yourself what you like and don’t like about them. What works and what doesn’t. Don’t get overwhelmed by looking at too many examples 10 or 12 should be more than enough to give you ideas of what to do and what to avoid. A successful logo should be simple, memorable, timeless and appropriate. Keep these as goals as you play around with ideas. KEEP IT SIMPLE Designing a logo is an exercise in restraint. While it may be tempting to try to convey a multitude of messages with your design, trying to do too much will sabotage the success of your logo. Avoid too many colors, multiple fonts and layered images. A confusing or cluttered logo won’t convey a clear message. If there are too many visual elements in your logo, it will be difficult for the customer to process. They won’t know where to look or what it means.