While starting a new web design project, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the never-ending design possibilities. I mean, design really could go ANY direction, so where does one begin? There are certain steps in the design process to help slim down the unknown—with the first step being creating a mood board.
What is a Mood Board?
Mood boards, also known as inspiration boards, are a quick and easy way to document inspiration for a new web design project. Not only is it great to get those creative juices flowing during the start of a project, but it also helps designers stay on track during the creation process.
Mood boards help communicate creative ideas and overall branding through visual imagery—think of it somewhat like online scrapbooking.
Mood boards are an essential tool to organize branding, styling, and website personality. The creative process of a mood board helps web designers conceptualize businesses’ online brands through visual ideas, colors, animations, graphic elements, web layouts, etc.
Where to Begin
Every day, more and more businesses are needing to rebrand themselves for an impeccable online presence. Where does one start in the creation of a company’s new branding? Mood boards.
However, before any of the creative can begin, we first need an extensive breakdown of the client’s business goals, likes & dislikes, and determining what they consider a conversion. Once we get this information, the creative process can begin! We research competitor websites, creative forums, graphic design inspiration—any sort of platform that will give us the tools to curate a unique and one of a kind brand. Seeing what your competitors websites look like gives designers more fuel to create a flawless and unique brand to blow your competitors out of the water.
Mood Boards vs. Style Guides
Mood boards are solely for the designer to draw and collect inspiration for a project. Style guides are a way of communicating the breakdown of branding to clients through color palettes, typography, and imagery.
What Do Mood Boards Include?
Mood boards can include anything and everything if it inspires you. Maybe you just liked the way a certain image was cropped or the way an infographic was designed. Whatever it is, during the beginning stage of a new project, you want to capture whatever inspires you so you can refer back to it and pull ideas from it as you are creating.
As a designer, we are constantly challenging ourselves to think outside the box. There are tons of other things—outside of your computer—that can help give you inspiration for your projects. Did you eat at a restaurant and just LOVE their menu design? Or did a building’s chic exterior architecture catch your eye? Design is everywhere! Take a picture, add it to your mood board, and see how you can incorporate those design elements into your project.
Feeling uninspired or stuck on the creation of a page? Pull up the mood board you created for that project and sift through it. It is almost a guarantee that something in there will fire off an idea.
Cohesive branding is extremely important in today’s competitive market. Designers are constantly challenging themselves to think differently and give our clients the best of the best. With all of the possibilities in design, it is easy to feel unsure of which exact path to take. Starting the first step in your design process with the creation of a mood board will help carry your ideas throughout the project and simplify the design process.
About the Author
Becca Karel is a Web Design Specialist at OMNI Online Solutions. Using her creativity and strong background in design, she provides our clients with aesthetically pleasing & convertible websites to drive sales and make lasting impressions online!