Where to find completed design work

I was wondering where people go to look at what others have completed and have shared. I typically go to Pinterest to get inspiration and search for specific words like “brochure design” or “business card design” or “layout design”. But I’ve been doing business form/ newsletter designs (not the most creative stuff) and sometimes find myself stuck in the same layout design…for more business/corporate setting… Does anyone have any suggestions?


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Of course if you’re tasked with designing, say, a business card, you’d have to seek out inspiration in that context, and really, any 30-60 minutes spent searching out and viewing specimens on the Web can be very useful. But don’t forget about the places you’re supposed to look for ideas; the client, the client’s business, the client’s market, the client’s competition, the clients style guide, if there is one.

Also don’t forget that applicable (sometimes roughly applicable) graphic design ideas are virtually everywhere, and training yourself to see, sort, and remember the good stuff can go a long way toward proactively clearing potential blockages in your own creative process. I remember a friend in my youth whose parents owned a small town tavern. One day I was in his kitchen when the daily mail was being opened, and there was a large envelope that contained a colored pencil sketch of a scene from the barroom, along with an brief explanation by the artist. It said he stopped there for a quick beer some years earlier during the only time he had ever passed through our town, and he thought it would be fun to sketch out his memory of the experience. We were floored by the way he remembered what he had seen. There were fully recognizable bar-regular characters we knew well, a faithful depiction of my friend’s father behind the bar, and somewhat mutated but still strangely accurate features like the sconce lights flanking the bar-back mirrors. Having no real visual arts talent of my own, it was the first time I truly realized how differently an artist’s view of the world is absorbed and processed. The point is, there is graphics design anywhere you look. Learning to see it effectively is critical.

@CraigB @HotButton Thanks! I agree that inspiration can come from anywhere and I should be looking at the client but I think for me see what can be done/has been done helps. I’m working with a company in the health insurance section so nothing really creative and I don’t really do business cards and I only referenced that as an example - I was just curious to know where people go to look at work that others have designed. I don’t think we can go places, design new things without first looking at what others have done…kind of the idea of looking at the past to get to the future type of reference here…

Maybe I am not searching the correct keywords?

When I have a project and nothing is brewing in my head, I’ve found that looking at other people’s completed work makes me want to just copy it exactly. That always feels wrong to me. Plus, if it doesn’t work, I can’t say that the person I swiped it from sucks. I still need to be able to defend each decision I make, so they need to be my decisions.

What I try to do is research the unwritten message the piece needs to convey - what emotions do you want to convey, what emotions do you want to invoke, what sort of groove do you want to create? I do color research, brainstorm color schemes, look for fonts that can work with the message, etc. Blue is huge in healthcare – calming and reassuring. Do I want hard corners or soft, flowing lines? Do I want bold colors or muted tones? Do I want text to dominate or should the layout lead the eye where I want it? Is this message better presented in text or image? What other pieces does the client already have in use and should this piece match? Once I break it down into bits and pieces, it usually comes together for me. Your mileage may vary.

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I would also like to know that. A new source of inspiration, that’d be cool

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