Create a Mood Board
by CurlStylist on Monday, May 17, 2010
Preparing for a photo shoot can be overwhelming for some stylists. Shoots are expensive ventures loaded with high expectations that need to be fulfilled in a limited timeframe with multiple personalities. To stay focused on the subject matter and to ensure all expectations are met within a timely manner, Sam Villa suggests using a mood board.
“The film industry uses story boards to chronologically depict various scenes that will ultimately make up a story on film. Mood boards are different, they’re used to represent a mood or vision . . . a concept of an image you want to create. I make a mood board for every shoot I do—a collage of images, shapes, colors and text that help clarify my goals, as well as communicate my vision to other participants in the shoot,” explains Villa.
Example from Sam
“My new DVD is called “The Bardot” and the first thing I did when preparing for the cover shoot was Google Bridgette Bardot and view the content, paying close attention to hair, makeup, wardrobe, body language and characteristics. I then wrote down phrases like “textured volume,” “sex kitten,” “sexy not sleazy,” “come hither” and “vintage yet modern.” I was struck by the many shots of her with her hair gathered into an updo. I then hit the magazines and was inspired by gathered fabrics that created texture and thought about a haircut inspired by that texture. I gathered my images and content, affixed them to the board, assessed the result and felt good about my direction. I used the board on set while shooting the image for the front of the DVD and then scanned it into my computer to use as a resource. I have since referred to the digital mood board many times while on the road.”
Villa describes his mood boards as a visual tool that helps him stay focused. He uses them to communicate what kind of character a model should evoke and what pose to use. It also helps with art direction in terms of directing lighting, background and camera angles, and it clarifies wardrobe, makeup, and most importantly, the hair. “It triggers memory muscles, so when things get hectic on set, everyone can refer to the mood board for direction and clarification,” explains Villa.
Creating a Mood Board
1. Write down key points, ideas and concepts on a piece of paper to use as a guideline
2. Go through inspirational magazines (Villa likes Italian Vogue, V and Numero Uno) and rip out any images relating to step #1—there are no boundaries, tear out anything that evokes a feeling or inspires. Topics can also be Googled and images printed out. No need to be ultra organized and symmetric, be creative – the more chaotic the better.
3.—Edit visuals to the ones that are appealing, realistic and relate to the subject matter. Use Prestik to affix them to a board – Prestik is a reusable adhesive, so images can be changed or moved without ripping. It can also be used on walls!
4. Affix key words and phrases to board.
5. When board is complete, brief all other participants before the shoot to help them prepare.
6. The day of the shoot, post the mood board where everyone can see it and start the session with a review to keep everyone on point.
After the shoot, photograph the board and save it on a computer. It will become a handy reference tool during shows, classes and other shoots.