I’ve always thought it was important to educate clients on the importance of white space. Having design-sensitive clients will make your life easier, it will make most processes shorter and relationships with them better. It only works if you have long term relationships with your clients, obviously.

In this post, I’m giving you some examples of a specific use of white space: negative space. I’ve already done it with negative space logos, which are very popular because they add extra meaning to the logo without adding too many extra elements in the design. Negative space can also be very effective for advertising, as you will see in the chosen examples.

Philip’s LED torch

In these powerful ads designed by Ogilvy & Mather India, the focus is on the functionality, not the product. The light is shown as revealing the sky, giving us a hint of the surroundings.



Save penguins

A powerful, Escher-esque, advertising created for SANCCOB Education Center by Andrew Hofmeyr. A perfect visual representation of tipping point.



A simple yet very smart print commercial that perfectly uses the media. It shows the product’s core functionality, turn roof space into sweet storage space. Excellent work by SHEDcsc Australia.



A subtle campaign to fight global warming, almost too subtle. The negative space between the ice is used to display a skyline that is doomed to disappear if the ice melts.


FIAT: don’t text and drive

In my opinion, the best campaign in this list. The visuals reflect exactly what happens if you text and drive. If you focus on the letters, you will not see the kids, animals, or road signs, the only way to see it is to put your attention on it. Stunning work by Leo Burnett Brasil.




A negative space left just where the product should go to highlight a feature, precision parking. It also hints at some of the benefits you could get from this feature. A visual created by Grabartz & Partners Germany.


About the Author

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Mirko Humbert

Mirko Humbert is the editor-in-chief and main author of Designer Daily and Typography Daily. He is also a graphic designer and the founder of WP Expert.