So I realize I’m a bit late on the whole Pinterest train, but now that I’m completely obsessed with it, I though I would share why I think it is so amazing, especially for illustrators.
For those of you who don’t know, Pinterest is this fabulous website (www.pinterest.com) where you can group collections of photos, either your own or ones you find online. Each collection is created on what is called a ‘board’. You give each of your boards a title and short description. They can be about anything you want and Pinterest will ask you to designate them to a category, like Home Decor, Art, Books, etc. You can follow other people and see what they are pinning as well. Photos can be ‘repined’ or ‘liked’ (as on Twitter and Facebook). If you are familiar with the Etsy treasury lists, this the same idea but on a much broader scale because you aren’t limited to items listed only on Etsy.
I started realizing how clever Pinterest was when I began having brides (I have a side business doing wedding invitations) who would send me their wedding idea boards so that I could get a feel for the look they wanted for their wedding. Which is completely brilliant! As a designer this made my job a million times easier. There are so many people who can’t verbalize what they want visually. Pinterest makes it so they don’t have too. They can just show me. I decided it was time to create my own account.
At first I thought it was cool that my clients could send me their ideas, but I wasn’t really putting together the benefits of Pinterest for me directly. Sure it was fun to have an account, pinning a few pictures here and there, but it wasn’t something I needed by any means. And then it hit me! Pinterest is a way to collect all of my visual reference for a book and keep it in one place. Which is awesome because now I don’t have to print out reference or track it down on the internet if I lose it. Everything is on one page I can scroll down. Now this may not seem life changing to you, but for me anything that organizes my tiny studio, even in the smallest way is big for me. Check out the board I made for the current book I’m working on:
Since Pinterest is becoming so popular, lots of online websites have figured out that it is in their best interest to include a Pinterest button for every item they list. For example, say you find some paper you love on the Paper-Source.com, but you don’t necessarily need to buy it right now or you just want it for visual inspiration, you can pin it just by pressing a button. It’s so easy!
The other really wonderful thing I’ve discovered is the idea of a book list. Normally I keep all of the books I want in a wish list on Amazon so they are all together in one place. Then I go and order them from my local bookstore. Sure, I’m sort of cheating Amazon. But is anyone really cheating Amazon. No. They are are certainly not hurting for cash. I like the idea of the Amazon wish list but the images of the book covers are small and I can’t make notations about the books. On Pinterest I can. And overall it is much more aesthetically pleasing experience. Here is a board of my favorite children’s books of 2012 so far:
Publishers such as Chronicle Books, Penguin, Candlewick, and Scholastic have begun using Pinterest to their advantage too. Check out this article in Publisher’s Weekly all about it:
For those of you who already know how great Pinterest is, sorry for the redundancy of this post. But if you were like me and didn’t know…I hope to see some of your fabulous boards soon.