Why Your Brand Needs an Inspiration Board + Template Downloads to Make One

Hello there, Love!

If you’re like me and you’re into design and visual branding, you love Pinterest! But are you really using Pinterest to its full effect? You can use it to create an inspiration board of your very own to guide your brand and set the tone for all of your visuals.

An inspiration board (sometimes called a mood board) is an arrangement of images, materials, pieces of text and more, that visually represent a particular style or concept.

Inspiration boards can be incredibly useful for designers who are tackling a new project or creatives who are looking for a rebrand. They’re perfect for the branding process because you’ll have all of your design preferences together in one gorgeous place, and you can make sure they’re cohesive and make sense together.

Ready to create your own inspiration board? Today I’m gonna show you how it’s done!

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Shh...make it secret!
I recommend creating a secret Pinterest board and pinning images that you feel are representative of your color palette, tone, and style of your dream brand. In the pin description, you can also make a quick note about why you chose that image. It’s great insight for you to have for yourself, and if you ever decide to hand your inspiration board over to a designer, it’s gonna be incredibly useful.

This part is fun! As you probably already know, there are thousands of stunning, pro photos and images everywhere you look on Pinterest. At this step, don’t beat yourself up about which ones are best to include. When it comes to photos for your inspiration board, the more the merrier! You can always remove some later. It’s all about inspiration, not pressure!

You can also take a peek at the “related pins” section underneath each Pinterest image. This makes it easy to find images of the same color and style.

And here’s a tip: because I’m someone who loves creating one-of-a-kind brands for my clients, I suggest you avoid pinning other people’s logos. If you’re in any kind of creative work where it’s your job to come up with your own concepts, you might wanna avoid it, too.

Now, take a look. Do you see similarities?
Once you’re all done pinning images to your inspiration board, go through your Pinterest board and keep an eye out for similarities.

Are you noticing any similar textures? Is there a type of lighting you’re drawn to? Maybe neutral tones keep making appearances throughout your board, or maybe metallics?

Maybe your inspiration board gives off a playful vibe, or an elegant tone?

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Figuring out what your fave images have in common will help you decide which photos make it to your final inspiration board. And remember that even if you personally are drawn to a certain kind of image, always be thinking about whether it will also appeal to your ideal client or customer. Keep their interests and preferences in mind!

It’s all coming together!
After you’ve found the similarities, it’s time to save the images that reflect the direction of your new brand in a folder. I like to save them on my desktop, then open a new Adobe Photoshop document and pull the images together. There’ll be lots of cropping and repositioning, and it can definitely take some time!

Feel free to mix up vertical and horizontal images and keep those margins as small as you can so all of your images flow together. Keep an eye on the background colors of an image too, since they’ll affect your inspiration board. And never use a photo just for its color—you’ll want the subject and style of each photo to be cohesive with your new brand’s direction.

Time to put it to good use.

  • Think of your board as an anchor. It keeps you from drifting away! When you feel bombarded by beautiful possibilities for your brand (because there are so many gorgeous images out there) you can return to your own inspiration board all throughout your design process. It’ll keep you on track during every visual branding choice you’ll make.

  • Give your brand some visual depth. Do you see textures that appear often on your board? Maybe you gravitate towards hand-drawn lines, or small circle patterns? You can use them even in your printed materials, like business cards or brochures.

  • Fonts. When it’s time to choose fonts for your brand, pay a visit to your inspiration board. Pay attention to the images that caught your eye that feature fonts. Could you use something similar for your logo, when you write for your website, or write to your clients?

Once you’re happy with your board, make sure you keep it in a place that inspires you! That way as you make every new decision for your brand, you’ll have a beautiful guide to remind you of all your favorite things.

Today I’m also giving you your own inspiration board templates, so you can jump right in and get started. Come back when you’re finished and share your inspiration board with us in the comments! Can’t wait to see what you create. :)

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To inspiration and creation,
Lauren