What is the Combinaboards card?
Collect inspiration in rough-and-ready moodboard format to help you make novel connections later on.
This is a tool for gathering thought-provoking prompts and juxtaposing them in unusual ways to make creative thinking easier. You can either prepare a Combinaboard yourself as a stimulus for a group workshop, or you can get people to create their own to explore any landscape.
How to use the Combinaboards card
1. Explain this is a visual activity – the aim is to make a moodboard (a digital or paper collage) to inspire new ideas. This can be as neat or as scrappy as you like.
2. Give everyone 45 minutes to do some online exploration, using image search, social media, and any other tools they choose.
The goal is to gather references that relate to your challenge in oblique ways – for example, if you’re looking to redesign the onboarding experience in your app, you might search for images of other “entry” or “welcome” experiences (like the queue at a Berlin nightclub, or an email offering someone a job). You can mix these with thought-provoking references that have no real connection to your challenge at all – go on, live a little!
3. Give everyone 15 minutes to arrange what they’ve found into a rough moodboard.
4. Take 5 minutes to digest and review everything as a group, using a tactic like Like, Wish, Wonder to zero in on whatever seems most inspiring.
You now have some rich and unexpected creative stimulus for the Diverge phase of your ideation.