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As I promised in my latest Make It Happen May post, I will be sharing every step of my greeting card process on the blog in hopes of inspiring and enlightening you. On my portfolio, I share a brief oversight of my design process. I believe that any well designed project can be broken down into three steps, the first being do your research. Though, it’s not as simple as gathering facts for a thesis and involves much more creative insight.

Design research can be broken down into two tasks, finding inspiration and creating a mood board. When searching for project-specific inspiration, I typically look for similar work that has the aesthetic I hope to eventually achieve. In this case, I’ll be looking for a couple things: other greeting cards that appeal to me and nautical illustrations. When looking for this inspiration I generally visit Pinterest and Dribbble, but I also have specific designers that I admire and always visit their portfolio’s as well. Below are some designs that have inspired my first nautical themed greeting card.

Greeting Card Inspiration - Make It Happen May

1. Rifle Paper Co. | 2. Paperchase (no longer available) | 3. Hammerpress | 4. Simply C Boutique
5. Tad Carpenter | 6. The Nimbus Factory

Now that I’ve done the first portion of my design research, I can move forward and create a mood board. Mood boards are essentially a single place to gather your inspiration and hone in on the desired aesthetic. If you’d like more information regarding mood boards, I recommend reading this previous article. The three main aspects I always include are a color scheme, typography/font choices, and an illustration style. Once a board has been created, it’ll be much easier to concentrate on the second step of the design process. Below is the mood board I created for my greeting card.

Nautical Greeting Card Mood Board - Make It Happen May

With any project that you want to make happen, initial steps always need to be taken before you can jump in. I believe that research is vital to any dream you may have but it takes form in different ways. For designers, it’s a very creative process that includes finding and constructing visual aids. I hope you enjoy going through this process with me and are subscribed so you don’t miss the second step next week, where I’ll be sharing sketches and drafts!

Have you decided to make anything happen this May? I’d love to hear where you are in your process, be sure to share in the comments!

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