I was wondering what is the difference between a storyboard and moodboard? I thought storyboads were only for movies and animation but apparently they use them in the ux field. Or do people just call moodboards, storyboards as well?
A storyboard is used in UX to illustrate a sequence or flow of events.
- Usually this means a flow of screens (e.g. login, then home page, then create post page, then submit post, etc).
- But storyboards are also used to illustrate behavioral and business flows (e.g. for a restaurant app, a behavioral storyboard might include
I want to go on a dinner date,
Pull up an app,
Narrow a search,
Select a restaurant, etc). This behavioral storyboard can then be used to design an application with a UX.
Example UX storyboard (note the sequential flow):
A mood board is not used as often in UX. Unlike storyboards, which are always ordered in narrative or sub-narrative flows, mood boards are only loosely organized. Mood boards are used to capture and cluster creative ideas very quickly. These ideas can range over many topics, but may include:
- Actual screenshots and wireframes
- Color palettes
- Creative inspiration (photographs, videos, etc)
- Emotional inputs and outputs
- Comparable and competitive applications
- And many others.
Example mood board (note the informal clustering of different topics):
I personally use moodboards to gather inspirational images, notes, etc. as a part of the very early brainstorming stage. Storyboards are exactly like you said, they are used to convey sequential pieces of information.
For example, I would use a moodboard to collaborate with a client so that we both have an understanding of the direction that the particular design is moving towards. Then I would use a storyboard to demonstrate a potential user's workflow.
I don't think it matters though, so long as you have a process that works for you!