Whitespace in design and the eye

Posted by on Mar 16, 2012 in Design | 0 comments

Whitespace in design and the eye

Recently I’ve been watching a documentary on how the brain works and how we get a grasp on reality. At one point the presenter said that although we think we see clearly and we believe the image we have on our minds about what is in front of our eyes is clear that is not what the eye actually transmits to the brain. In order to create the crisp image of reality that we enjoy the eye has to move a lot, and fast. The brain gathers lots of tiny snapshots and recomposes them to create on big, sharp image.

The eye sends to the brain images that are crisp in the middle and more and more blurry towards the end. Like this:

This explains why whitespace plays such an important role in web design. Look at the following screenshot from the adevarul.ro website

and how the brain sees it

As a comparison look at bostonglobe.com

and how the brain sees it

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