The Design phase of a project is collaborative, involving input and reactions from different groups and requesters. At this point it becomes iterative, meaning that it loops back upon itself to validate ideas. Using a feedback loop to build and established in previous phases, the design phase is to put ideas in front of users, get their feedback, refine them, and repeat. These ideas may be represented by sketched out wireframes on paper or white board, then interactive wireframes done in Axure or similar wireframing software to give the requesters and testers semi-functioning prototypes, These are created in low-fidelity to delay any conversations relating to look and feel.
Once the wireframes are agreed on then I approach the visual phase where color, images, typography and visual spacing are considered this to is an iterative loop approach again, and it helps cement the final full color look and feel of the application that will be carrier through out the different pages.