How to Make a Mood Board & Shot List


So updates first-- I had my birthday celebration two weeks ago and it was very relaxing! My birthday fell on a Thursday so I took Thursday Friday off and had a long 4-day weekend to celebrate with friends in Malibu. 

After that weekend, I flew straight to NY that Monday morning to shoot the Summer Fridays launch and then flew back to shoot their L.A. launch. It's been a crazy hectic two weeks of shooting nonstop-- last Saturday Rosalie Agency had a big campaign shoot for a new product that's launching in the summer! So the reason why I've been MIA on IG is because I've just been so busy and tired. 

One thing that really helped me to stay organized and keep track of what to do for each shoot is having a good mood board & shot list. I honestly wouldn't have been able to make it through the past two weeks without these two things. 

Mood boards help me so much in pre-production and to keep everyone on the same page during the shoot because the last thing you'd want is to reshoot! Nowadays I hardly shoot without a mood board and shot list. So today I'm sharing my tips & tricks for creating a solid mood board & shot list. 

Mood Board

This is basically a collection of inspiration images you want to achieve for your photoshoot. A good mood board should have 7-10 strong and clear image of what you're trying to achieve. (No random pictures of a dog or cloud.) 


Sample Mood board for a beauty shoot: 

Most of my images are sourced off Pinterest-- you can easily find amazing photos by just typing in "beauty editorial" or "fashion editorial" etc. 

Often times I would ask the client if they have any inspo images they can send me too. 

A mood board can go either way-- either you create it, or the client creates it. Either way, it's essential to getting the vibe of a photoshoot. 


 Mood Board for  @Joliicosmetics

Mood Board for @Joliicosmetics


I use Keynote to create all my mood boards. It's honestly the simplest program. You can just right click an image you like, hit "copy image" and paste into keynote. A great keynote feature is also file>advance>reduce file size so you can make your file smaller. When you're done, you can just hit file>export as PDF and boom-- you have a shareable PDF file that you can upload to dropbox/share as an attachment to email. 

(You can try Niice to make moodboards too.) 


As for shot lists-- this is a MUST. I don't shoot unless I have a shot list from a client. (This is true for all campaigns.) Time is money and if your team is only there for 4 or 8 hours, you need to know exactly what you're shooting every hour. See below for sample shot lists!


This is created via excel-- which you can access in Google Docs! The more detailed the shot list the better. 

Common terms: 

Evergreen: shots/content that are timeless and aren't seasonal. For example, a santa shot is not evergreen because you can only use that during Christmas.

E-comm: Shots of product against white.

Swatch: Texture of the product like foundation poured out 

Screen Shot 2018-03-21 at 10.42.51 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-03-21 at 10.46.01 AM.png

& there you have it!

Hope this was helpful and stay tuned for more photography tips ;)