Exercise: Making a Moodboard

From the list of words we were given, I chose ‘destruction’ on which to create my moodboard and started my making a mind map of words and ideas associated with it. I also made more thorough notes on some of the ideas I particularly wanted to include.

While researching destruction of nature, I came across CG images illustrating the slogan ‘Destroying Nature is Destroying Life’ created by Illusion in collaboration with environmental activists Robin Wood. This artwork is hard hitting and really struck a chord with me. Below shows their work and my process to creating my own version that I have included on my moodboard.

I sourced the photos on the internet and used photoshop to see how best the photos should be laid on top of each other to try and create a scene. This was partially successful, particularly on the left and in the middle, however the right side doesn’t seamlessly flow. If I was to create the image again, I would also try to make the blend of the collaged part on the hedgehog’s head into the drawing smoother.

The next part of the mind map I wanted to focus on was sea life and coral bleaching. Below shows my exploration of this idea. I explored the idea using different media, trying to create the look and texture of coral, then I remembered a suggestion from my tutor that I try to use digital techniques. So the coral on the right is my first attempt at scanning in a drawing to colour using photoshop! I was quite pleased with it but didn’t find the process nearly as enjoyable as creating art traditionally, and looking at the screen for so long made my eyes hurt!

My finished ‘destruction’ moodboard. While I was exploring ideas, the hierarchy for the board became clear to me. I wanted to have the main focus on destruction of nature which is the theme for half the board. I’ve included one of the CG images mentioned earlier and my hedgehog and coral art work. In addition to that I included a picture and quote from a children’s book about the destruction of nature called ‘Varmints’.

From here I chose to focus on destruction of our way of life and the threat of terrorism. I’ve visited the 9/11 museum in New York and was struck by the sense of unity and coming together such destruction can bring. The photo at the bottom right is a photo I took of a displayed photo of New Yorkers coming together at Ground Zero one year on. This unity after destruction took my thinking to the fall of Communism and destruction of the Berlin wall which also led to unity. The photos of the Berlin Wall are two I took while visiting a few years ago. Finally I wanted to include self destruction. The phrase pictured here is a common one among people experiencing low self worth and a torrent of negative thoughts. Basquait’s artwork is a perfect visual representation of it.

The only colours that really entered my mind when thinking about destruction are the ones I have included on the board. Shades of orange, black and grey for burning, flames and ash. I covered the board in wall paper that has the look and feel of burning wood. I explored burning a little further in my sketchbook before putting the board together. (Shown below)

I explored ways to create a burning tree look, including using charcoal from my fire which worked very well. I used the charcoal/pastel pencil method shown at the bottom on my final moodboard to depict a forest in various stages of burning.

While completing this exercise I realised that it takes a lot of curation. I had to filter out some of my original ideas in order to visually communicate a particular theme within the theme of destruction. Many of the ideas on my original mind map weren’t included.