How to Use a Mood Board to Reach Your Goals

A grid metal mood board hanging over a desk.Pixel-Shot / Shutterstock

Creative thinking does not only apply to people in traditionally "creative" industries. Here's how to integrate mood planning into your workflow and get creative momentum.

Even the most stifling and traditional industries sometimes require a moment of creative vision. But when you do not usually get creative at work, it can be difficult to tap into that part of yourself when the time is right. Even if you work creatively all day, every day, you can sometimes end up hitting a brick wall that your inspiration just can not seem to break.

This is where atmospheric paintings come into play. Even if they look like a craft project in an intermediate school, atmosphere paintings are a proven way of doing things. From fashion designers to technical CEOs, many professionals can take advantage of creating a dashboard.

Wondering how moodboards work and how to use them to achieve your own goals? Let's break it down.

What's a Mood Board?

A mood board is a collage created for a specific purpose. It is a collection of words, photos, fonts, drawings, textures and colors, collected and presented in physical or digital form. The name "mood board" comes from the tradition of using a foam board. But today, sites like Instagram and Pinterest make it easy to create mood boards online.

The goal of a mood board is to visually gather a concept. For example, a party organizer can create some mood boards to show customers potential party themes. An entrepreneur can create one to get a clear idea of ​​how to represent your brand. A traveler can use a mood chart to plan what he wants to do during his next vacation.

The atmosphere boards are used most often by photographers, interior designers, graphic designers and fashion designers. But they can be useful for many other purposes. If you are not creative, the idea of ​​creating a "mood board" may seem absurd. But in many industries, successful people have used them, so do not neglect the power of ambience boarding.

Why should you make one?

What are the advantages of representing an idea, concept or plan in this way? Here are some of the main reasons to try the mood board:

To free your brain: Most of us have been there: we have a project to start, but we can not get ideas out. The process of creating a mood chart can help you have your brain in this relaxed and creative where does your best job come from. Instead of looking at a blank screen or page, you can get the inspiration you need to move forward.
To better communicate with customers: If you have to present your work to your customers, a dashboard can help ensure that they are well informed before proceeding. For example, if you are designing websites, you can use a mood board to show the concept to your client before designing the website. If they do not like it, you will not have lost a lot of time and energy, and you can easily create a few more mood boards until you 're what you found the right concept.
To better communicate with your colleagues: When working as a team, you often try to explain your ideas at moments "lost in translation". If you and your colleagues share your ideas with moodboards, you are all sure to see the same vision.
To refine your vision: If you think you have good ideas for a project but do not know how to combine them, a dashboard can help you. By placing the different elements next to each other, you will be able to see more clearly what works and what does not work. Plus, while you are working on all the small challenges associated with carrying out a big project, a mood chart can help you stay focused on the end goal.
Win time: At first, when you create a mood board, you may feel that you are wasting valuable time in "projects". But if you collect and refine your thoughts in this way, and then share them with everyone else, you'll save time by reducing errors and communication problems.
To help you appreciate your work: When working on a big project, it is often exhausting. With a mood board, you can add an element of creative fun to the process. This can remind you to take pleasure in what you are doing and to keep moving forward, even when it becomes difficult.

How to make a mood board

A series of cork planks hanging on a wall.Marie Linner / Shutterstock

Now let's see how to exploit this concentration and create a dashboard.

First, keep in mind that many projects may require a series of mood tips, not just one. When you decide to create each one, decide the goal.

Is it your chance to gather some initial ideas and see how they work together? In this case, you can use a casual and open approach. Do you want to show a final concept to a customer before proceeding with your project? In this case, you can refine your map more accurately, to show only the elements of the final design.

You can start with a list of words describing your concept, as this can help you design your mood board. However, if you start a project, you can start by designing the dashboard and then think about the words that describe it to refine your idea.

You also need to decide if a physical or digital ambiance chart is best for your goals. Here's how to approach everyone.

Tips for physical mood

Physical mood charts generally work best for individual projects. Carrying a large billboard in meetings with clients or colleagues can be tricky (although it is not impossible). But if you are a tactile person who works best with your hands, a physical ambiance chart could become your fault.

One of the benefits of physical panels is that they can be displayed in your office or workspace for a convenient source of inspiration and concentration. They also make great memories of previous projects.

Ready to make a physical mood chart? Give yourself a block of uninterrupted free time and enough space to work comfortably. Gather a billboard, a foam board or a bulletin board to hold your work. You may want to have several different boards on hand, because the first one you make may not be perfect.

Pick up your scissors, glue, tape or any other adhesive you need to stick things on your board. Then gather a lot of inspiring supplies to work. Here are some things you may want to try:

Old calendars
Magazines and newspapers
Color samples
Fabric falls
Greenery
photographs

Get creative and try to reuse the elements of your home for this task. If it can stick to an array, you can use it! Over time, you can create a mood board kit ready for use at any time.

Digital ambience tables

A Pinterest board with multiple images of different bathrooms.

Digital wall charts are perfect when you need to work quickly, have limited space or share the concept with people from different locations. Although the process of creating a digital table is very different from that of a physical panel, the results can be just as beneficial.

Just like a physical environment chart, digital versions can range from the simplest to the most refined, or from the staff to the professional. The platform you choose to host your forum affects what you can do with it.

And just like when you create a physical table, give yourself an uninterrupted block of time to create your digital room board. try limit tempting distractions from your smartphone or your social media sites.

Here are some of our favorite digital platforms for mood tables and what you can do with each of them:

Instagram: While this does not have to work like a mood board, if you engage on an Instagram theme, you can do it easily. You can use Instagram as a mood board by uniting all your messages with a specific concept or color scheme. You can also create a private Instagram account to use as an image-driven digital mood board for your creative projects.
Pinterest: A great way to create simple and fast mood charts. You can access a vast database of images, photos and quotes, and then collect them in as many tables as you want. You can also set them to public or private.
Milanote: This application digitally reproduces the experience of physical mood. It also has built-in mechanisms to keep the notes and ideas of the team in one place, making it an ideal tool for collaborative projects.
Sampleboard: This image-driven site is not free, but it delivers stylish results, perfect for sharing with customers. If you need to make a heavy presentation in images to share with the clients or your team, this could be a good choice.
The box: This site is similar to Pinterest, but is specifically intended for creative professionals. It offers clean and attractive layouts, as well as a social aspect resembling that of social media. However, the general idea is not very different from Pinterest, so you might find it redundant.

Is a mood chart right for you?

Everyone works differently, so a mood chart may or may not be the best solution for your creative struggles. However, we strongly recommend that you try it. Creating a mood board is a great way to introduce a little creativity into any project. And unlike many work-related tasks, it's fun!

Need more creativity in your personal life too? Discover our guide for travel journaling following.

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