Finding places to stick pieces of creative inspiration you find online quickly and conveniently can be hard. Having a goto place to store screenshots, articles, or reference images is crucial to organizing your creative life. With this in mind, I went on a hunt to find apps that function as creative mood boards that were incredibly easy to use. Functionality and an inoffensive design were at the forefront of my scouting, but most importantly the tools had to help create a mood board.
Here are four good ones.
The Mat Board promotes itself as “a social bookmarking hub for the creative world which will enable users to explore, share, and inspire creative work.” This website is very much like Pinterest, minus the mid-western crafters vibe, which is a major drawcard. I got excited by Mat Board because it prioritizes beautiful design and a great user experience. If you’re after a nice looking place for your nice looking thing, The Mat Board is a good place to start. It’s a solid place to build beautiful mood boards with a heavy focus on design, branding, and illustration.
Pinterest seems to finally have a large enough database of images to make it relevant for professional artists and designers. After working hard to shake its reputation as a place for boring photos of Ugg boots and Starbucks cups, Pinterest has cemented itself as a long lasting social media network. Pinterest is developing especially well for designers wanting to showcase their work in specific areas, such as branding, packaging, or ad work. As it’s becoming increasingly easier to Pin images from other sources, i’s usability is ever increasing. The ability to have secret boards is also great for uncooked projects that still need to germinate before sharing them with all your Facebook friends.
Bonus points: Follow Redbubble on Pinterest
Mural is like a better, visual version of the organizational tool Trello except you actually want to use it. It’s best used for collaborative work or projects where you want to share your thinking with other creative people. Designed for remote workers to move working projects along, Mural has potential to be used as a mood board for your own creativity. Mural’s refined design makes it pleasing on the eye and effortlessly functional. It’s not free to use however, but if you were part of a creative co-working space or designing as part of a team Mural could be a worthwhile investment.
Evernote relies on your collation and input to aggregate an index for everything you can possibly think of: notes, images, docs, screenshots, and basically anything else digital. If you use Evernote premium you can easily create mood boards based on your notations. There’s a good explanation of how it works on the the Evernote blog, or designer Amy Haywood has a run down of it here. I like Evernote mood boards because it isn’t restrained by anything – you can upload whatever you’ve sketched or written down at 2am and make a board from that.
[Header: “Remember” by Cayton Cox]