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You may have heard about mood boards and how great they are for design projects. Mood boards are a collage of images, patterns, colors and even fonts that are meant to inspire the look and feel of a design.
A mood board is typically one of the first steps in planning out a design. Creators in many fields use mood boards such as brand designers, interior designers, photographers and fashion designers.
I start every branding and website design project off with a mood board. It give my clients a chance to understand what the look and feel of their design may look like, without me having to invest hours into creating a design they may not like.
Mood boards can help save you time by planning a well thought out arrangement of images before you move on to the next big step, the design.
I’m going to walk you through the exact steps I use to create mood boards for my own clients.
The first step in creating your mood board is to collect images using Pinterest. I love using Pinterest with my clients because we can collaborate together on one board. I recommend making the board a “secret” board so that it’s not visible to the public.
Here’s an example of a secret board my client and I collaborated on together…
Begin collecting images for your mood board that appeal to you. Don’t hold back on this part! Pin a lot of images, you can edit through them later and delete the ones that you don’t want.
I recommend pinning lots of images for:
Photography – Find styles of photography that represents the look and feel you want for your project or photography you would want to use for your project. I like to also include fashion images for my client projects that represents their ideal client (what does she look like? what style clothing does she wear?).
Logos – If you’re working on a branding project, pin images of logo styles you like.
Fonts – If your project includes having to make font selections, include images of font styles that are similar to what you have in mind. You can also use sites like Creative Market and MyFonts.com to test and preview fonts and add the preview to your board.
Colors – Finding color palettes on Pinterest is so incredibly easy, in fact it can be down right overwhelming since there are millions of color palette pins. Describe 2-3 of the colors you are seeking in your search and you’ll be able to hone in on palettes that are more specific to what you have in mind.
Patterns – Some projects may require showing ideas for patterns or textures. Try to limit your board to showing 1-3 options.
Icons/Illustrations – If your project requires you to use icons or illustrations in the design, your mood board is a good place to explore some styles for those. Find a style you like so that you can use that as inspiration for creating your icons or illustrations.
Quotes – Using a quote in your mood board is a fun and unique way to express the thought behind the design. Keep in mind that the style of the quote isn’t as important as what the quote actually says.
A color palette is one of the most important parts of your mood board design. Ideally you’ll want to have a color scheme in mind while you look for pins.
Perhaps you know you want purple in your design, so begin your search on Pinterest with “purple color scheme inspiration”. You’ll see thousands of examples to choose from. To help narrow it down even more, choose a secondary color such as “purple and green color scheme inspiration”.
Keep in mind that the mood board is meant to be just a suggestion for ideas – you don’t have to commit to the exact colors in your mood board.
Once you’re done pinning images to your boards, take a break and step back. When you return to your board, start deleting any images that don’t truly fit the look and feel for your mood board.
Begin adding the images you love the most to your board and continue adding more images from your Pinterest board. It will take some time to sort through all of the images and find the ones that best communicate the vision you have for your project.
Now comes the best part, putting all of your inspirational images together in a layout called your mood board. You can create your own grid of images using a design software like Canva.
I’ve made it so easy for you by creating 10 pre-made mood board Canva templates. You can easily drop in your own photos and colors and instantly create your stunning mood board!
The Mood Board Canva template set from my shop includes these 10 gorgeous pre-made designs you can use…
Starting off every project with an inspiration mood board helps to keep your look consistent and makes it easier and faster to go from concept to creation.
What do you think of this article? Do you have any questions for me? Ask me in the comments box below!
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