Pinboards vs. Pinterest - Analog and Digital Inspiration Boards
Is one better than the other? Has the internet and social media replaced good old fashioned sketching, magazine tear sheets and all things analog?
These days designers are so fortunate to have so many resources at our fingertips - from hard copy books to internet sites like Behance and social media feeds from Pinterest and Instagram, we have a constant stream of inspiration available to us. With all of the tools of the trade available, what is the best way to pull together inspiration pieces and manage a visual research library that is built over time?
Here at PostModernLaundry we use a variety of options to cull and refine our visual language for projects. As noted in our What to Expect page under our About section, we will often have clients build an inspiration board on Pinterest that they share with us. We collaborate on building this board out to establish a cohesive and shared design vocabulary. Each side will add pins noting what stood out and why. From there, we can review the board together and really hone in on repeating elements and design themes. From there we will often print off pins that stand out to us and physically pin them up on a board hanging on a predominate wall of the studio. That helps with the marination / germination of ideas part of the process. Sketches, photographs, notes, fabric scraps and other elements will be added as the project progresses.
First drafts of logos or designs will be posted here as well. Having something printed and tangible, hanging where you can see it will provide you with an opportunity to see things in it you didn’t see on screen. Having the chance for the design to sit there in the background as you walk past it, look at it, study it, ignore it, subconsciously think about it, will provide you with the breathing room needed to make edits and refinements before sending off to the client.
What happens to all of this research material after a project is complete? It is filed in the client’s project folder and saved for future reference both for their projects as well as new clients’ projects. The Pinterest boards are never deleted as well and often serve as a starting point for new projects or a refresher for ongoing work with existing clients.
We as designers are so fortunate to have access to digital resources. For our workflow, utilizing both tangible and digital means of inspiration pieces is crucial to our process.