Tag Archives: mood board

Things that inspire me – 02.13.2011


And just like that, another week has flown by. Here’s the latest bit of weekly inspiration. I’ve been looking to sources other than graphic design for ideas. I’m drawn to the textures found in handcrafted furniture, menswear design and mountainous environments. While curating this weeks inspiration post, I found underlying current of design that’s built to withstand wear and tear, but still manages to be aesthetically pleasing. I’ll call it rugged elegance. It’s something I definitely strive for in my design work.






Image 1:
Infinity Tentacle by Andrew Strauss
The Kith Café via The Contemporist
Folding sunglasses by Persol
Breuckelen Distilling Gin Packaging
Mountain Hut via TheFoxisBlack

Image 2:
Wooden Chandelier by Jason & Lars Dressler
Hobo leather accessories via Hypebeast
Visvim S/S 2011 Collection via Hypebeast

Image 3:
Reclaimed wood couch by North on Sixty
Skull Drawing by Iain MacArthur

Image 4:
Olsson & Jensen lamp via The Remodelista
Headdress drawing by Mike Giant
Barbour Jacket via The Sartorialist
Bespoke leather belt by Draught Dry Goods
Joe Strummer via The Selvedge Yard

Image 5:
Bedouin Warrior via Them Thangs
Uniform Wares Watch at Need Supply Co.
Fuck Haters tee by OMFG Co.

Things that inspire me – 01.31.2011


Like I said last week, I’m starting to use the mood-board format more and more to collect inspirational imagery. This week’s theme is somewhere along the lines of “contemporary gothic man-cave.” I am inspired by memories of my late grandfather’s den, which was filled with guns, marksmanship medals and taxidermy. With the collection below, I’m working to convey a contemporary take on the mid-century palace of masculine relaxation. Since I fully believe in giving credit where credit is due, I’ve provided the image sources when possible at the bottom of the post.



Sources -

Image 1:
Sperry ‘Cloud’ Collection
BiJulesNYC Identity by Dust La Rock
Non Native ‘The Bluffer’s Code’ Collection
Tricker’s Brogue Boots

Image 2:
Rings available at OakNYC
Stamps from my great grandfather’s collection
The Glenlivet Scotch – available at your corner liquor store
Vans x A.P.C. Capsule Collection
Modern interiors via Plastolux.com
Old workwear buttons via Mister Mort

Image 3:
Illustrations by Matt Taylor
Typograpy by Herbert Lubalin
Tiffany & Co. Identity by Louise Fili Ltd.
Sculptures by Hiroyuki Hamada
Vintage man caves on The Selvedge Yard

Mood Board Madness

I’ve recently noticed an uptick in the popularity of online mood board creation apps. Sites like Olioboard and Polyvore allow users to create boards within the realm of interior design and fashion respectively. I thought it would be a good time to write about how mood boards can serve the graphic designer, and how I use them in my process.


The first step in any project is usually the research and asset gathering phase. Very seldom does a design just fall out of thin air. We’re constantly exposed to a stream of images both online and in the “real world” and what we see factors greatly to what we produce. Mood boards are a way to establish a look & feel for the project. They can communicate to the client and design team a stylistic direction, before any actual creative legwork has begun. The designer can play around with type, texture, color, photography and built spaces. Elements can be juxtaposed and experimented with in order to achieve a desired effect. The challenge though, is to create something original, greater than the sum of the parts presented in the mood board.

All of the mood boards displayed here are ones I’ve developed in order to communicate a specific theme and look. I don’t use any special software or online app. I simply use Photoshop to collage elements; culled from various sources including books, my own photo library, previous designs and of course the web. Give it a shot if you haven’t yet, mood boards are an invaluable resource in the creative process. I may just factor them into this very blog a bit more in the future.