What’s the point of an inspiration board/mood board? What does it do in the creative process? How does someone start to gather inspiration? Or, what are your favorite tips on discovering your brand style. etc.
The process of discovery is huge in the design process, one that is often only touched on the surface but holds more weight than any other point in the process. The goal is to capture who you are, what motivates you as a photographer and why you choose to do this day in and day out. With the everyday demands of entrepreneurship, establishing the heart behind your brand keeps you focused and gives purpose to the monotony and expectations. This is the very first step in discovering your brand. Do this and everything else will flow naturally.
Now — the pretty things! The visual elements that make up a brand identity. While heart and narrative play massively into a brand, the visual elements bring your it full circle.
Step 1: Home
Look at the design pieces you bring into your home, after all, your home is your safe place, the unfiltered expression of who you are and contains the things that draw you in. The artwork, paint colors, furniture pieces, decorations, tile choice, wood colors, etc., your style cuts immediately to the heart of you, which in turn defines your brand.
Step 2: Nature
Get out and adventure. Walk through the places that inspire you whether it be a garden, the beach, downtown. Wherever you find makes your heart jump in excitement, go there and take note of the colors, textures, patterns you see and the emotions you feel. Those are elements that you want to take note of when you design an inspiration board.
Step 3: Pinterest
Now that you’ve honed in on who you are, you can now peruse Pinterest. I always advise my clients to stay away from pinning other logos and inspiration boards because you begin to morph into someone else’s brand rather than creating your own. Take step 1 and step 2 and beginning pinning images that represent these things. Pin to your hearts content, documenting what each pin speaks to you. Also pin typefaces (fonts) that draw you in but the fun comes when those pins come from items like invitations. At the end of the process, you should have 50+ images that outline your brand visuals.
Step 4: Build Your Inspiration Board
Filter through your new Pinterest board and look for commonality in your pins, colors, textures, patterns, typefaces, etc. Screenshot 12-15 that have a cohesive feel, open up Photoshop and put them in an inspiration board. If an image doesn’t fit the feel of your developing brand, find another that will! Be picky when designing your inspiration board. This will act as a filter for your entire brand!
I hope that helps you narrow down your style! Do the hard work now and everything else will flow naturally.
PS. To help, I’ve included a link to a inspiration board template for you to use when building your very own inspiration board. Download and start designing a brand that’s you!