What defines a visual style

Here are the things that help someone notice or recognise a visual language/style in an interface.

  1. Layout patterns, e.g. if the design repeatedly uses a distinctive layout across different views.
  2. Density, or how many elements you use in a given space, where more feels more active/chaotic/busy.
  3. Size of elements relative to other elements, e.g. noticeably large text.
  4. Depth, or how many effects are used that give the appearance of depth, e.g. shadows.
  5. Amount of visible structure, e.g. lots of containers, borders, etc.
  6. Typeface, e.g. a fun/rounded typeface vs a square/technical typeface.
  7. Special text characters, e.g. lots of exclamation marks, emojis, dashes, etc.
  8. Amount of colour, e.g. how much of the interface is in colour.
  9. Variety of colour, how many noticeably different colours are used.
  10. Saturation of colour, e.g. if the palette is approachable pastels or exciting primaries.
  11. Maximum brightness contrast, or the brightness difference between your darkest and brightest colour. More contrast has a higher impact.
  12. Imagery format and style, e.g. bright photos vs dark illustrations.
  13. Shapes, e.g. if the style uses a lot of circles for containers, decoration, as image masks, etc.
  14. Proportion of types of contents, e.g. text-heavy, image-heavy, etc.