The creative process is a conversation — it’s collaborative and messy, and having line-of-sight over each iteration and discussion throughout a project is harder than ever, especially if your team is remote.
In this article, I'll show you how you can use Niice's project template to help you manage a creative project through its entire lifecycle, and how you can discuss work in progress, videos, PDFs or even Figma files, all on one page. It's the best way to keep all your work and feedback in one place, so you never lose sight of what you're discussing with your team.
A creative brief outlines the roadmap and keeps all stakeholders in the loop about the goals and objectives for a project. A good brief is articulate, well-defined, and provides clear direction so that everyone involved in the project knows what they're doing, and why they're doing it.
You can outline your creative brief in the first section of your project board. Start by sharing details with your team like the project description, deadline date and copy suggestions, but you can put whatever information you need in here and add more text blocks if you need to add more information.
Don't worry about getting your brief perfect first time around, you can go back and easily update all of these details as your project evolves. Realtime updates means that your team will always be looking at the latest version.
Research & ideation
Collecting and sharing visual references is a great way to kick-start the first phase of your project and ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Upload your research
Gather research by adding files directly from your desktop or copy an asset from a library or a previous campaign. You can also download the browser extension to save content from around the web or quickly grab some reference images from our inspiration search. Once you've done this, you can then add a few captions to give them some context.
If you'd like to invite others so they can drop their research in, change your board to a Team Board so that anyone on your team can join.
💡 This section has placeholders that you can click on to upload content, but they're only intended to give you a starting point. If you don't need them, you can remove them simply by selecting "remove" in the drop down menu on the placeholder.
Organising your research
Organising your work with sub-boards is as simple as organising folders on your desktop. For some projects, you may only need a simple moodboard, but for more complex projects you might want to create multiple sub-boards to explore different concepts and directions.
Sub-boards are also super useful at the review stage of a project if you're discussing things like contact sheets or storyboards, as you can have them easily accessible within the main project, without them being part of the overall layout.
💡 Some projects don't require a moodboard, so you can easily remove it
Get simple feedback from your team
Starring is a really quick way to "vote" for your favourite design directions or to get a simple "yes" on something. Ask your team to star their favourites and you'll notice the stars and notifications pop up in real-time, and when you go to the activity panel, you'll be able to see at a glance who starred what item (including which one the boss likes!).
Ideas don't emerge fully-formed, there's always feedback. With project boards, you're able to have as many rounds of feedback as you need and manage all those rounds of revisions in one place. It's a great way to see how the project evolves through time.
This part of your project will look different depending on what you're working on. For example, if you're needing to choose selects from a photoshoot you might only need one round of feedback, but a complex project (like a storyboard) might require more sections for multiple revisions. You can add section templates anywhere in your layout for things like storyboards or moodboards.
To help you get started, we've added sections for three rounds, but you can add or remove them as you need them and edit the section titles so they're more relevant for your project.
Discuss work with your team
With comments and annotations, you can discuss work and give feedback across multiple items at once. If you have Slack sync turned on, you'll be notified when there's new activity on the board, so you know you'll never miss anything important.
Anyone who is a member of the project board can comment on work, but if you need feedback from someone who isn't part of your team, you can invite them as a reviewer.
💡 Live cursors can help you provide context to the discussion as you can walk through work and show exactly what you mean — It really is the closest thing to being in the same room, standing around a wall, pointing at things.
Once final assets have been approved, you can move this section to the top of your project board so people can easily grab what they need. The project board can be accessed from any device by going to a simple URL, and the full high-res assets can be downloaded directly from the browser. You can add a password to your project so that non-collaborators (people who aren't a member of the board) will be asked to enter the password before they can view it.
💡 You can bulk download multiple assets by holding Shift, clicking on the assets, and then selecting "Download as ZIP" in the pop-up drawer at the bottom of the board. You'll then see the folder in your downloads.