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“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.”

- Joseph Campbell


5 Best Tools to Kick Start Your Design Project

5 Best Tools to Kick Start Your Design Project

If you’re a designer, you know how utterly important it is for you to be able to be on the same page as your client or your team. Having a sense of what your client is expecting from you and wants out of the project is the best way to be on the same page.  Here are some of our favorite tools (in alphabetical order) that help you do just that:

1. ConceptBoard

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ConceptBoard is more of a brainstorming tool than anything else, but can still prove extremely useful when you’re in the initial stages of a project.  You’re able to write down ideas, provide feedback and collaborate in real-time on a virtual whiteboard. 

Recently, ConceptBoard teamed up with Trello, a project management app, to link tasks and follow-up in conjunction with specific ideas.

2. MoodShare

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MoodShare is a tool that lets you create virtual mood boards in real time with other creators.  You can pull from a variety of approved media sources such as Flickr, Instagram, YouTube and ShutterStock to build your collaborative mood board. 

You can ask your clients to integrate music and video into their mood board to get a more immersive feel for what you’re going to be creating.

3. Mural.ly

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If you want to put you thoughts together or get a sense of your client’s inspiration, Mural.ly is a great tool to use.  On Mural.ly, you can drag and drop links, documents, pictures and media files on an HTML5 virtual drawing board.

You can use it yourself or ask your clients to use Mural.ly to create a visual inspiration board for your reference.  Once they have completed the board, you can collaborate with them in real-time and ask questions about their various inspirations remotely.  Mural.ly is iPad compatible, which we all know is priceless!

4. My Visual Brief

Create a design brief in a visual way using the My Visual Brief.

My Visual Brief helps create a visual design brief, instead of a written one, which can often get confusing.  My Visual Brief comes with several tools that reduce designer/client confusion, such as an interactive questionnaire that identifies the client’s needs thoroughly, and a large database of images which makes it easy to create a visual mood board for the project and to select relevant design examples without spending hours on image research.

It will even suggest the direction in which the project should be taken based on the client’s needs. Of course we are biased, but we truly believe it is your one-stop shop for kick-starting all your design projects.

5. Springpad

Create notebooks to get organise with Springpad.

Springpad is a great little tool that doubles as a personal online “notebook.”  Users can create notebooks or notes that are made up entirely of text, rich media or a combination of both.  It’s a great way for your clients to keep their thoughts and priorities visually organized.  Because of the sleek and clean layout, it will be really easy for you to grasp your client’s desires.

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So, there you have it!  These are five of the tools for designers to use to kick off a new design project.  We all know that being on the same page as your client is one of the most important factors to reach successful results that everyone will be happy with.

That being said, it’s time to get to work!

A few moments from the pre-launch events in Santiago, Chile

A few moments from the pre-launch events in Santiago, Chile

Product Management & UX: similar, but different

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