Design a Brand Identity: Create a Compelling Mood Board | Courtney Eliseo | Skillshare

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Design a Brand Identity: Create a Compelling Mood Board

teacher avatar Courtney Eliseo, Brand Clarity & Design

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Mood Board Basics


    • 3.

      Research and Image Gathering


    • 4.

      Layout and Refinement


    • 5.

      Client Presentation


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About This Class

Create a Compelling Mood Board is the third class in the Design a Brand Identity series I started earlier this year. In about 40 minutes you will learn how I create a mood board for a Brand Identity design client from start to finish.

Following Ask the Right Questions and Write an Airtight Creative Brief, this class will continue to take you through the overall design process I follow when designing brand identity projects for my clients.

You will have all the info you need to complete the class project within these 5 lessons, so feel free to take this as a standalone class if you prefer to dive right in. However, it will pick up right where the last one left off, so I do recommend checking out the first two in the series, especially if you don't have a ton of experience with this process. 

Here's what you'll learn:

  1. The purpose of a mood board
  2. How mood boards fit into the design process
  3. How to create a mood board from start to finish
  4. Best practices for client presentation

You'll put your skills to use by creating your own mood board using the steps I lay out. 

Students of all levels can take this class though it will be geared towards designers and presented in the context of developing a brand identity system for a client.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Courtney Eliseo

Brand Clarity & Design


Hello! I'm Courtney Eliseo, a new-ish mom, East Coaster living in the PNW, and the founder of En Route Workshop, where I help service-based businesses connect with more ideal clients through brand clarity and design.

A Bit About Me

Most mornings you can find me on the yoga mat, and most evenings you can find me curled up on the couch with a glass of wine. But as often as possible, I am off exploring somewhere new, breathing in ocean air, and soaking up every bit of the world around me. I have a deep-rooted desire to make things, a boundless sense of curiosity, and love losing myself in stories.

When it comes to design, my goal is to make work that is thoughtful, timeless, and most importantly, authentically aligned with who you are, your plans for the future... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Welcome to create a compelling mood board. The next class on my design brand identity series, where I'm taking you through my entire brand identity development process. This class builds off the previous two, where I covered asking the right questions and creative briefs. If you haven't checked those out yet, it might be helpful for you to start there, but it's not entirely necessary. The previous classes will give you some more context, especially as to how mood boards fit into the overall design process. But I will give you all the info you need to complete a project within this class. In the next few lessons, we'll dig into the purpose behind the mood board. How they will make the design process go much more smoothly and cover all of the details involved in how I go about creating a mood board for a project. We'll cover the entire process from start to finish. Your project will entail creating your own mood board, whether it's for your own client or using the sample client profile information I provide. Either way in the end, you'll end up with something like this. Your's may take on an entirely different format look and feel, but you'll definitely have a grasp on how exactly you got from point A to point B so that you can use these skills in your own work from here on out. I'm looking forward to seeing what you come up with. Next up, we'll get right into mood board basics. 2. Mood Board Basics: Welcome to Lesson 2, Mood Board Basics. We're going to start at the very beginning. So let's start with a basic definition of what a mood board actually is, in the context of how I use them for brand identity projects. A mood board is essentially a collection or collage of images that come together to represent the visual direction the brand will take. Now that we're clear on the definition, how do they fit into the overall brand identity process? There are three points I want to make about the role a mood board plays in the process. First, they set the stage for visual design. If the creative brief is a written blueprint for the project, the mood board is its visual counterpart. Rather than sit down to a blank sheet in your sketchbook or an empty art board and Illustrator, the mood board will provide you with a starting points, so you don't end up spinning your wheels. The mood board also establishes the visual world your eventual brand will live in. One of your goals when designing will be to ensure that when the project is complete, your brand will look right at home if you simply added it to the mood board you originally created. Along those same lines, we can use the mood board while you are designing to check your work against. If what you're designing feels like it could fit right into the board, you're likely on the right track, if it feels like it might be out of place, there's probably some tweaking and adjusting to do. Now let's talk quickly about the process we're going to go through. When it comes to the actual process of creating a mood board, there are three main stages we're going to work through. First, we'll research and gather images, then we'll lay out the mood board and go through a process of refinement, and lastly, we'll prepare the mood board for client presentation. To give you some more context, let's look at some different mood board examples to give you an idea of what your eventual project will turn out to look like. Let's start with a few of my mood boards. This first one is for my client, Gypsum and Pearl. As we move forward, I'll go into more detail that will give you a better understanding of how I arrived at this point, but I wanted to start by sharing what my mood boards look like, because they tend to follow the same general format in every project I do. You can see the pattern starting to develop in this one for Element Seafood. I tend to use a variety of image sizes and I gravitate more towards asymmetrical layouts. I also tend to overlap some images, so there's some interaction between the different visuals. Here's another example so that you can see more of the same type of style. So as I go through the class and I share with you a process of picking and choosing and arranging images, this is the type of look that I'm personally working towards, but that doesn't mean yours needs to go this exact drought. To show you what else is possible, I'm going to share with you a few examples of other formats used by other designers. First, here are a few mood board shots by Paper and Stitch. You'll see these are actually analog boards using printed pieces and objects layered together, and this is actually a really fun direction you can take if you tend to prefer arranging things with your hands. There's no reason why you can't create a mood board on your wall and take a picture of it to present to the client. Next, here a bunch of mood boards by Rowan Made. You'll notice these are digital mood boards like I create, but they have a completely different look, feel and format. She uses a standard, clean, nine-image grid. I've never attempted to create this type of mood board, but I'm guessing it may actually be more difficult to do, because there is a more intense editing process that would need to take place in order to get down to nine essential images. But this type of mood board definitely has a really striking look, and this is a great direction to take. The last example I want to share includes a few mood boards by Maemae & Co. I've always loved her mood boards, which falls somewhere on the spectrum between the Rowan Made boards and mine. She uses a varying amount of images and creates a more organized grid that I tend to use, but they are less strict with the layout than Rowan Made's. So if you're a little bit unsure of the design you want your board to take, these are three different directions that veer away from the type of direction I take that you could try. If you're still looking for some other ideas, there are a ton of resources to pull from. There are quite a few options for mood board templates that you can download from Creative Market if you'd like to start with a ready-made layout. A quick search on Pinterest reveals a ton of different mood board designs that you can also take inspiration from if you'd like to create your own. The actual layout is going to be less important than the content, so don't stress too much about this part. Don't feel like you need to work specifically within some of the designs I've shared in this lesson, the format you work with should be something that feels right to you. Now that you have an understanding of the overall process we're going to be working with and plenty of examples of what your end result might shape up to be, we're ready to dive in. Next up we'll get right into research and image gathering. 3. Research and Image Gathering: Welcome to Lesson 3, Research and Image Gathering. Let's start by going through the steps I follow when I start the research process for a new mood board. Before you get into research mode, you're going to want to first determine how you'll collect your images. Then you're going to search for images that represent the tone from your brief, which I will get into more detail on in a minute and lastly, you'll simply fill in any gaps that show up. While you're researching, you want to have some more handy to collect the images you want to save for potential use. Before we talk research, I want to just share a couple of options for image collection that I like to use. The first is Pinterest, which is pretty much the standard for image collection. Many of you probably already have accounts. This is a perfectly good option to use. It's easy to set up a secret boards that you can work on your imagery search in the background without it being revealed publicly. I use Pinterest for a tone of things, but I actually don't use it for mood boards. What I use and my favorite option for this process is Dropmark. Personally, I just prefer the user experience of Dropmark for this purpose, they have multiple plans available, including a free one, so I do recommend checking them out if you don't have a preferred app just yet. You can also of course, just save directly to your desktop. But I like starting with an app so that when I'm finished the research process, I can have a broad view of the collection of images I've put together before I start doing any arranging. Now, when I'm ready to start researching, there are a bunch of places that are may go-to spots for image gathering. There's no rules for this, so you can look wherever you want. But I want to give you some ideas in case you're not sure where to start. First we've already talked about Pinterest a little bit, but this is a given, is essentially a visual search engine, so it's a great place to find pretty much anything you're looking for. Then just to give a quick plug, I have a bunch of design focus boards on Pinterest that you can access where I've organized imagery into various design-related topics. They tend to be one of my first places to scroll through if I'm not necessarily looking for something specific, but just seeing what catches my eye. I'll provide links to this and everything else I'm going to share with you in the class resources. Design Inspiration is another visual search engine that's also a really great place to look for images. Unsplash is awesome for free. Stock photography is my favorite place for free to use stock photos period, but it could also be a really good resource for your mood board images as well, just depending on what you're looking for. Then I also follow a series of design and art inspiration blogs that tend to provide a ton of great images to work with. The EGF, slightly different focuses, but I tend to find a lot of options for texture is an abstract images of these sources which come in really handy with mood boards. Some of my favorite sources include Picdit, Flickrgraphics, Adult Art Club, A day in the land of nobody and Visualgraphc. All of which I'll provide links for in the resources so that you can check these out for yourself. Now that we've got that covered, let's get into the actual research process. Where exactly do you start? The first and best place to focus is on the tone. Essentially you want the tone which you've already established for your creative brief to guide this entire process. If you're a little bit lost with my mention of the word tone, check out the creative briefs class where I talked about it a bit more there. The tone is always my starting point and it's what shapes not only the mood board pieces, but the entire design process as a whole. Let's take a look at a quick example from my client, Grpset Pearl. This is the logo that was the end result of our brand development process. Here's the tone we came up with to guide that entire process. All of the work we did leading up to that point brought us to a tone of refined, Bohemian, Indulgent, Whimsical and Sophisticated. That tone let into this mood board, which you've previously seen in this class. The focus of your research is primarily going to be centered around the tone. You'll take each tone word and search whatever resources you choose to get the bulk of your images. For your project, I'm going to give you a sample client and tone to work with. You'll create your mood board using that information, unless you already have your own project you'd like to use instead. That's perfectly fine. For our sample client, I've created Hudson Health and Wellness, which provides nutrition, health coaching and wellness services to mostly women between the ages of 25 and 55. The tone of their branch you take can be described as organic, healing, serene, compassionate and dependable. Normally the stage you're likely to have more client information to work with, but this covers the basics that you need for our purposes. Just to reiterate, what you're going to do is focus on this client as an example, that small bit of background that I gave you and these five specific tone words. Again, I'm going to get into more detail on this as we go along in the class, but this is our starting point. Once you get started with your research, you might hit some roadblocks with your tone words. Sometimes they very easily translate into your image search, but it doesn't always work that way. Let's take organic, for example, it's likely that if you simply plug that word into Pinterest, you might get something like this. These results certainly of all apply to the word organic, but they don't give you the type of results that you need. A recipe or essential oil chart isn't really going to work well on your mood board. When this happens, there are a couple of things you should do. First, you want to try searching for similar terms. In this example, you might want to try the words natural, biological, or living to see what comes up. That might take care of the issue right away. Second, you want to think about what do you visualize when you hear that particular word? What comes to mind for you? What type of image do you feel might work well for the mood board and then conduct your search accordingly. We know that word organic can relate to a tone of different things and as we saw with the Pinterest search, many of those things will not help you in this process. You know that you don't want to include a recipe or a chart in your mood board, but you probably have some other things that immediately come to mind that could work. For example, maybe organic would translate into a flower illustration, a sketch of some kind, or a sample of hand lettering. What images come to mind that would give the impression of organic on your mood board and won't feel completely out of place. Before I send you off to start your own research, I have a few more tips that will help to keep you on track. First, consider the industry. This works two ways. Before bringing a company and the health and wellness space, something that references are related to smoking is probably not the best fit. Then on the other side of that, consider what industry-specific imagery you may want to include to help develop the mood. For example, if you have a client who's a photographer, it may make sense to include a piece of their work on the board. Next, one thing to definitely avoid is any competitor imagery. We want the focus to be on the mood that the client's brand should embody and including competitor brands, will shift the focus to what their competitors are doing as opposed to what they are trying to do. Next, you want to lean towards the abstract as you pick images out. At the very least, you want to have some abstract imagery included a newborn and when I say abstract, what I mean is textures and shapes that exude a certain feeling, but don't depict something super specific. Since the goal is to evoke a mood, you want to avoid giving the client too many opportunities to focus on one image that they just don't like, which will take them out of the context of our tone, or primary focus. Just to get a little bit more specific, along those same lines, you want to keep an eye out for textures in your searching. Having textural or tactile images that convey your tone to work with, will be really helpful when you start arranging images. You're going to want to use a balance of different types of images, which I'll touch on a little bit more later, but having a bunch of textural images in your collection when you get to your starting point, is only going to help you out in the long run. Next, you want to keep an eye on color. I'll go over this a little bit more in another class, but my color palettes tend to evolve very specifically from the mood boards I create. Everything about it, it makes a lot of sense that you're using the tone to create a mod board and then using the mood board to create a color palette, is an evolutionary process that has worked for me without fail. In my experience, if you're picking images that reflect the tone, you're simply going to witness the color story come together as you go. This is just something to keep in mind as you work. Another quick tip is to give yourself a time limit in the research process. I love making mood boards and so this is something I could easily loose myself in for hours. If is less that way for you, you might not need to worry about this step, but since the Internet provides an endless stream of images, it makes sense to give yourself a set stopping point to work against. Then lastly at this stage, you don't want to start editing yet. You just want to save anything that catches your eye so that you have plenty of material to work with. Editing will come in the next part of the process. At this point, it's time to get going on your own research. Once you have your images collected, I'll see you in the next lesson, Layout and Refinement. 4. Layout and Refinement: Welcome to lesson 4, layout and refinement. In this lesson we're going to get into the actual mood board layout. I'm going to share my process with you and also give you a glimpse into how I actually work right in Illustrator. Let's get started. The layout process involves a few steps. First you're going to choose the platform you want to work with. Then you're going to cull the images that you collected in Lesson 3. After that, you'll arrange your images into your mood board layout. Then lastly, you'll review and finalize your board. Let's start with step 1, choose your platform. I personally spend most of my time in Illustrator. It's the design app I'm most comfortable with and enjoy working with the most. I design my entire mood board with an illustrator. If you're also planning to work digitally, you can use whatever app you prefer. InDesign and Photoshop could also be good options, and Canva is actually a great free online option that provides you with ready-made layouts to work with if you want a little more specific guidance. These are just some initial suggestions. Really, any app where you can lay out and arrange images will work. The next step is to cull your images, which means to go through everything you collected and start picking out images that stand out that you definitely want to include or that really embody a specific tone word. Just as a few examples. Essentially, you want to go through your images and pick out selects, so that you have a jumping off point for the arranging process. Here's a quick snapshot of where I started off in my drop mark image collection. This is what I was referring to back a couple of lessons where I mentioned liking having a big picture look at the full collection of images before I get started with any arranging. Then from drop marker, I actually download all of the physical images into an organized set of folders. As you can see here, I make one folder for each tone word, and then I go through my drop mark collection and download each image into the appropriate folder. This makes it easier to go back and look for things if I need them later, and also gives me a broad view of what words I have more widely represented in the images I've found. One thing to note is that some images are probably going to come up that could be described by more than one of the words. That's definitely the case for me in this instance, and it usually is with every mood board I do. Don't be too meticulous about this at this point because it won't really affect your outcome all that much. If you're separating into folders, just choose the word that you think best represents that image and go from there. The next thing I do is go into Illustrator and lay all of the images out so that I can move them around however I need to. Here's a snapshot of what that looks like. Just as a side note, I hide the our board at the stage so that it doesn't get in the way. Then I go ahead and organize the photos into groups that match the folder structure. I just give them a little bit of space on our board, so that I can access things more easily. You can see here how I've just split that entire collection of images into different groups. I don't usually label them in my own folder, but this is just to illustrate for you where the different categories of images for each tone word falls on the art board. Then the next step is the real bulk of the culling process, where I go through the groups and pull out the images I know I want to at least try to incorporate for sure. I'm going to shift into showing you my screen so that you can see how I actually did this with the mood board I made, especially for this class. Based on your research, you'll most likely have images in mind that you feel really belong on the board or particularly embody a tone word. Start by pulling out those images and then you go from there. If you're having trouble pulling out anything specific, start by assessing each group of images and try to pull out a few images that stand out from each group. Then take a look at all of the images together and reassess. Then you just keep having to repeat that step. Once you have that collection in front of you, some gaps just might reveal themselves. Then after finishing up that process, this is where I ended up. Still quite a few more images that I'll probably want to use, but it's definitely narrowed from where I started. Once you've culled the images, the next step is to start arranging. Let's take another quick look at my starting point. The culled images I pulled from my research. A few things to keep in mind as you start this process. The first one is to pay attention to color. I just want to reiterate quickly what I mentioned in the research lesson. As you're moving images around, pay attention to how the colors are relating, both in terms of the overall board, as well as how the individual images work in proximity to each other. Next, balance should really be your primary focus. You want to strive for balance when it comes to the layout, arrangement of images, color, and subject matter. Every aspect of the board. Balance really helps the end effector translate into a mood as opposed to five blue sky pictures and two trees for example. You want to juxtapose images in a way that keeps your eye moving around the page and discourages focusing on any particular aspect for too long. In addition to creating a more visually pleasing result, this will also encourage the client to stay focused on the overall feeling of the board as opposed to its individual parts. Then lastly, you want to experiment with the number of images. I actually tend to use around 15 images every time. I don't count them or plan that ahead of time, but that ends up being the organization that works the best for me with the type of layout that I tend to work with. The number of images you use is definitely going to depend on the layout that you're working with. But as you're starting out, this is something that just play around with and see what feels the most comfortable for you. Now let's move over to my screen to show you how I went through the arrangement process for this classes board. This is when both experimentation and intuition start to become really important. This process is both about moving images around and just trying things to see how they work together and constantly assessing what feels right. This was my initial stopping point. I felt like this was going in the right direction, but I knew I wanted to make some adjustments both to the images themselves, and to the overall arrangement. At this point I go back in and do some more final arranging. The layout didn't feel completely balanced to me, I knew I wanted to work on how the images were arranged, the different sizes of the images, the shapes and the layering. I also felt like some things didn't quite fit. I knew I definitely wanted to include another element representing both organic and dependable, and the sensor of type specimen which I was using to represent dependable, in a way, felt a little heavy and out of place to me. These were the issues that I could immediately identify and I went about trying to correct them first. Then I just went about rearranging and moving different items around until I finally arrived at this, for my final board, which I am definitely happy with. Once you have your board, in what you think is it's final state, the last step is to go through our final review process and finalize the board. Our main focus will be to review the board against the tone, to make sure that you're representing the tone accurately. Just to reiterate we're looking at organic, healing, serene, compassionate, and dependable. Let's quickly go through each one individually and I'll give you a bit more insight into why I chose particular images to represent certain words. First, does the mood board reflect organic? To me, it definitely does. Most of these images actually reflect organic in some way to me. The sea glass, the ocean and the clouds are photos of natural life. The small hand-drawn illustration reflects both something found in nature, and an illustration style. It is a bit more free and less restrained, which feels organic to me. The script type and the mountain illustration also follow that same line of thinking. The wood carved into free-flowing shapes at the bottom of the board, it feels organic to me as well. It's probably no surprise from this part of the review that I found the most images to represent organic. I had a lot of work with here. How does the mood board reflect healing? This one's a bit more abstract. I chose the hand image directly in the center to more directly represent healing through touch, which is a big part of what the company offers. Also the herb illustration represents healing by alluding to the use of herbs and Eastern medicine. Let's look at the board through the lens of serene. I think the overall feel of the board is very serene in general. The soft pastel colors, the minimal quality to some of the images, as well as the direct serenity found in the images, like the ocean and the clouds, and the peaceful symbol of the dove, all of those things contribute to representing that word well. For compassionate, I chose to bring in images with a human element in varying degrees. The hand illustrations, specifically the heart image and the element of handwriting, and the quote at the bottom left, all reflect this to me. It's subtle, it is not literal, it is definitely abstract in some cases more than others. Since dependable is the word that brings up the least amount of visuals for me, the relationship between dependable and the images is probably the most abstract out of all five words. I chose images that in an abstract way, represents strength, sturdiness, or have some weight to them. The two architectural images fall into this category. The white brick facade at the top and the pink one towards the bottom, as well as the bold capital "a". All of those images have some sturdiness to them, even if it's done in a quiet way, and that is how I've chosen to represent dependable in this board. Now if you go through the review process and you feel like there's still something missing, just go back and continue to rearrange the images until you arrive at a place that you're happy with. Here's our final board. I just want to reiterate now that I've gone through what each of the tone words brought to me as far as images go; number one, you're going to have a totally different result most likely because you're going to be searching for all different sources and you're running this through your own creative lens. Number two, this is a good example to show you of how balance is really important and how I'm using that to my advantage here. As you can see, there isn't really one main focal point. There's some larger images, there are some smaller images. It's all organized in a way that doesn't force your eye to look at one thing first and then move to the next thing. Your eye's constantly moving around the page. It isn't really any one thing that stands out, and you're getting this overall feeling from the images as they come together, both in terms of the color palette, the subject matter, the quality of the line work, and the illustrations, all of it is balanced. There aren't any repeat images. The overall board really evokes a feeling as opposed to directing design. One other thing to keep in mind is that you don't have to represent every single word equally. In fact, it's actually pretty challenging to do that at all. As you can see, I have way more images representing organic than I do dependable, but that's totally okay. You just need to make sure that every word is represented in some way and that the overall result is balanced. It also gives the impression with the white space left that there is space for that brand identity that we're going to develop. If you did want to go back after you do the identity and check it against the mood board, this gives it space to live. Even within this board, I could have arranged this a million different ways. There could have been even just a couple of images swapped out for different versions of them or entirely different images, and you'd get a slightly different look. You can reflect those tone words in a bunch of different ways, but speaking about the work using the tone, and then translating that to the visual, is such a good tool when you move into design because you've already set up the client's expectations. Once you get the client on board with the tonal direction that the brand should go in and then translate that into the visual, you've already set them up for a general idea of what they should expect when you get to design. The process really does evolve, and you're not just sending them some design options that feel like they're coming out of left field. There's less opportunity for anything contentious to come up, and you already have a very specific framework to review the work with the client through. One of the things I love about this process is that even with the same exact brief, you'll most likely come up with a result that is completely different. I might even come up with a totally new result if I were to conduct a whole new search on a different day. We all have our own individual perspective that impacts the process, and as a result, no two mood boards will be exactly alike. There's no one right answer. Please share your end result with the class. I can't wait to see what you come up with. Next up in the last lesson of the class, we'll talk about how to present your work to the client. See you there. 5. Client Presentation: Welcome to the final lesson in this class, client presentation. So what's next? Once your mood board is finished, the first thing that needs to happen is that you need to prepare your presentation. Typically when I'm presenting a mood board, I'm also presenting a lot of other brand development work alongside it, which is not the case for this class. For our purposes, I'm going to focus on just a small section of what my presentation would include, so that you can see what content makes sense for sharing. I'll also give you some tips about how to share and direct the conversation. There are three important pieces of content to include when sharing the work. The background, the tone, and then the mood board itself. Here's an example of a few spreads I would include in a presentation document. The background should include whatever information you feel is most essential to your client and the project. For our purposes, it is a simple paragraph I provided to you for your project. But for another project, it may be best to include some more complex details, such as a complete audience profile or a breakdown of their services. This is information the client already knows, but it's helpful to provide context for what they should be focusing on when reviewing the mood board before you share the actual mood board with them. The tone can be a really simple spread listing the words, how you present this depends on whether or not you've shared the tone with your client and agreed on that direction with them prior to the stage. But your main goal should be to remind them that this is the tonal direction the brand should take. The mood board is going to be a visual representation of that tonal direction. Then lastly, share the mood board itself, ideally on a spread or page of its own without any disruptive text or graphics so that it can be focused on completely without distraction. Now that we've looked at the presentation, let's get into some more specifics around client communication at this specific stage. There are a few tips I recommend providing to clients to guide them in their review and feedback process, as well as a couple of specific questions to ask. First, let the client know that they shouldn't be taking anything literally. Since the purpose of the mood board is to create a mood, the client should understand that none of the images are made to translate specifically to a design element in their brand. This can be a little tricky to explain because there's quite a bit of nuance involved, but it's an important piece of information to cover. For example, if there is a photo of clouds, that doesn't mean their brand will use photos of clouds. But at the same time, if the overall mood board palette is pastel, the brand will likely reflect a similar palette. It's not going to feature neon or earth tones. I like to re-emphasize to the client that the concepts that I mentioned earlier in this class, which is that the board represents the visual worlds the brand will live in, but it doesn't necessarily represent the specific details of the brand, that's what comes next. Then along those same lines, encourage the client to focus on the whole more than the individual parts. The pieces of all been chosen and arranged carefully to represent different aspects of the tone. Taken out of that context an image may feel completely off, but it's juxtaposition on the board can completely change the feeling it creates. Then once the client understands what they're looking at, there's a few questions I go to when I'm encouraging feedback on the board. First is, does the mood board reflect the tone? You've already gone through this review process, but it makes sense to check in with them in this way as well. One person's idea of organic doesn't necessarily fit all, so it'll be really helpful to get that type of feedback before you move forward. Next, ask if anything feels out of place. This may seem to contradict some of my other advice and it does to some degree, but it can be helpful. The primary focus should be on the whole, as I said, but it can be a good idea to check in and make sure there isn't anything that really sticks out to them as out of place. Whether or not to go down this path is something you should use your judgment on, depending on the individual client. If someone's responded really well to what you've created so far, there's probably no reason to shift their focus to individual images, but it also can be really easy for a client to fall into giving that type of feedback. Especially if they don't have much experience working with boards like this before. If you see things heading in that direction and you're unable to turn it around, lean into this question and work towards figuring out why whatever they're focusing on doesn't resonate for them. Then lastly, the mood is really an abstract emotional experience. We go through a step-by-step process to get there but in the end, the mood of a brand is all about how it makes you feel. We're aiming to create a board that elicits certain responses from the audience. While their subjective feelings are actually super important here. Now what if you go through all of that and you just aren't on the same page with the client. Nothing is aligning and you're not getting anywhere. That's when you go back to the brief and the tone specifically go through each word, does each word still resonate with them? If the answer is yes, talk through what they visualize along with each word so that you can come to a better understanding of what they were expecting and what they're looking for. If any of the words now don't resonate, then that means it's time to take a step back and figure out where you can shift course to get on the same page. Now once you've presented a board and you might have a couple of steps ahead of you, depending on how the initial presentation went. If your client loved the board and felt like you were completely on point, then there's nothing left for you to do. But if there were any points of contention, now's the time to address them. Simply put, you want to make any refinements you need to get on track with your client. Finalize the board, and then move on to the next phase, which is design, something I plan on getting into much more in the next few classes I put together. With that, I've covered my entire mood board process. I hope this was helpful for you and you've learned some new skills and processes that you can use with your own clients. I'd love to see your work so please share your mood boards and presentation if you'd like in the class. Let me know if any questions come up for you and otherwise, happy designing. Thank you for joining me and I'll see you in the next class.