Mood Board Monday: The Dance

Mood Board Monday: The Dance

I don’t know about you, but Mood Board Monday is quickly becoming one of my favorite days. I love putting the boards together, and, deciding which one is the perfect board for the week.

This project in general has been fun because I’m pushing myself to try different styles, different drawings, patterns, mediums, etc.

Last week, I stuck with digital to work on the Fly High mood board.

Fly high moodboard from

From Tuesday to Thursday, I was down with a pretty gnarly migraine. A three day migraine is pretty unusual, and by that final day, I was on the struggle bus. I began inking out some sketches, and they came out pretty horrible. I wasn’t really able to control my pen or steady my hands, and even had some difficulty holding the pens.

I originally didn’t want to go bird themed simply due to the fact that my inspiration board was birds. I felt feathers, or birds, would be too simple of a pattern design.

In the end, the easy path won and I sketched out a few rounds of feathers, played with some birds, eggs, nests, and branches, but settled on the feathers for now. A good part of this project is that I can circle back to these mood boards at any time in the future and create another piece! As a matter of fact, I did exactly this and created a quick quote board out of some fun flowers that I sketched up using the first week’s mood board color run.

Scan copy

Here’s one of my sketches that I used to create my feathers. I was really struggling with my lines and keeping all pieces nice and tidy for my scan. I was close to giving up out of frustration, but decided to make the best of what I could make. That’s the point, right? Right!

After digitizing my sketches and scanning them, I moved to Adobe Illustrator. For the first time, I used live trace to create my outlines and move in to smoothing, coloring, and organizing my feathers. I knew I’d need to keep the Wacom at bay and proceed as easily as possible. From the three pages of feathers that I sketched with a Micron .01 by hand, I came up with the following digitized feathers that I felt would be workable.


Not too bad, but not too perfect, either. When I introduced this mood board, I did comment that I wasn’t too sure I would love this color arrangement. I’m not a huge fan of orange, I wasn’t sure there would be enough flexibility in the five shades, and I felt that I might struggle to come up with something that I enjoyed.

While I did like some of these, and ended up adding in another green, I do believe I will revisit this board in the future, maybe play with some water color, etc.

In the end, I did like some of the unpredictable lines, un even details, and whimsical anomalies that came from being half blind, unable to fully use my hands, and on the verge of giving up. The feathers wound up with some really fun character traits. Does one stick out as a favorite to you?

To close down this board (for now, I’m still feeling challenged by this set), I created one repeat pattern that can be used for surface pattern designs, and one quote board.

Fly High Brave Girl by Girl Vs. City |

My word for 2018 is brave, and with this word, I’ve decided to also do a quote every week with my mood boards that incorporates a reminder to be brave.

I foiled the words ‘brave girl’ in a copper texture that’s really subtle, but still reflects the original orange. When all was said and done, I ended up not being too overly disappointed with my pattern repeat or my quote poster.

While these aren’t my best designs, and due to my migraine having to use a font (Honey Moon) instead of hand lettering and digitizing my own brush work, I do think these are pretty.

And, when I finished these feathers, I played around with some crooked flowers I sketched out, also shaky and far from beautiful, to create the following quote board for my first mood board.

Keep Blooming Brave Girl |

The colors have come out quite electric, which I quite enjoy. The more I look at these awkward, funky, uneven flowers, the more I fall in love with all of their imperfections. As artists, painters, surface pattern designers, we’re often under so much pressure to create perfection that sometimes we just forget to have a little fun. I wound up with around 25 funky uneven flowers and leaves. I could see them being used in a children’s book, other quote posters like the one to the left, a funky cotton, pajamas, or even some fun summer picnic ware.

This week’s mood board: The Dance

This week, I’m excited to take my mood board into soft, subtle, and feminine territory. I loved ballet as a child and still well up any time I go to the ballet (or watch Center Stage, let’s be honest). This week’s mood board brought forward all kinds of memories, my old tutus (my mom still has every single one and every single pair of ballet shoes), and some of my dances. Honestly, I’d love to get

Mood Board Monday with Girl Vs. City |

back in to an adult ballet class, for no reason except to dance, stretch, and move.

Isn’t she beautiful? I absolutely love the soft, almost sherbety colors that I was able to pull. I also love that the colors aren’t necessarily your typical ballerina pink. The photos have so much movement, and so much femininity. I’m almost positive this will be a watercolor week, but given that I don’t want to always take the easy way out and push my mind to see new potential, I’m not sure what my finished projects will be.

Who knows? This week may even have some b-sides.

Did you create with me this week? I’d love to see your mood board pieces in the comments below! Some of my author friends are even creating short stories for my mood boards. I’m thinking to create a monthly anthology featuring short stories as well as art work, with the proceeds going to charity. What do you think?

Originally published at Girl Vs. City.