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Why Including White Space In Your Brochure Matters

July 10, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 215

White space in a brochure: what is it and how do I create it?

White space, also known as negative, empty, or blank space, is not necessarily white in colour. It refers to the areas in a document that are left blank, for example gaps around images, in margins, and surrounding columns of text.

Some see these gaps as an opportunity to pack in more information, but this can result in a cluttered and unattractive design.

Striking a good balance between positive space (where text and images lie) and negative space, makes documents and websites pleasant on the eye and easier to read. So, how do you create white space in a brochure?

Leading and tracking

You don't have to deal with white space in large chunks; the smallest of increases can have a substantial impact on the look and feel of your brochure. So when it comes to text, adjusting leading and tracking can be very handy.

These are line and letter spacing, respectively, and can add to the blank space in your design. However, it's important to note that we're not talking about pushing words and lines closer together in order to create space around them.

In fact, it's the opposite - moving them slightly further apart. But won't any increases eat into white space, rather than freeing it up? Technically, you're redistributing the white space, adding it in and amongst your text to give your words room to breathe.

This not only makes them more readable, but also enhances the aesthetic quality; white space surrounding text can create a more professional and elegant feel.

PNG and TIFF images

Your brochure will more than likely contain images, and you can create white space with the type of image format you choose.

Let's say, for example, that you created an image of a mobile phone on a white background using free photo editing software. Saving or exporting it as a PNG or TIFF image gives you the option of transparency and you are able to export it without the white background.

Then, when placing this image in your brochure, you'd see just the mobile phone without any rigid, square background. This wouldn't just add white space; it would create a more professional look.

So which format should you choose? TIFFs have more flexibility when it comes to colour space, with a range of colours that will match up on screen and in print. However, this generally results in a larger file size, so TIFFs are best kept for printed brochures.

PNGs, on the other hand, are perfect if you're creating an e-brochure because they're smaller in size and are compatible with most browsers.

Keeping it simple

Another way to create white space in your brochure is to concentrate the content within it. But this can be trickier than it seems, especially with the spatial restrictions that such a document presents.

In fact, it can be very easy to fall into the trap of cramming in too much content, lessening the impact of your overall design.

But if you can hone in on one or two key areas of interest for the reader, you'll leave valuable blank space. This will give these areas room to stand out, resulting in a brochure that's more focused and easier on the eye.

It's all too easy to look at white space as room that is there to be filled. After all, the more content there is, the more valuable your brochure. Right?

Not quite. White space can be just as important as your actual content, helping to keep your design professional, focused, and accessible. And the three methods above are a great way to achieve exactly that.

Peter White is employed by Serif, a company providing software for small businesses. With their extensive range of products including template resources and easy to use professional desktop publishing software, it is possible for all users to create an interesting and engaging brochure.

Source: EzineArticles
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