I think it is very important to use inspiration boards when you are planning an event for a client. Some planners disagree, but I feel strongly that your client needs to feel the general direction visually. After all, they can't climb into your head and see what you are thinking, so it is important to make sure that you are both on the same page.
When I am brainstorming for an event, I usually do that with tons of tons of pictures, whether that is through Pinterest, or just bookmarking things that I like. After I decide on the direction of the event, whether that be a color scheme, or a party theme, I make an inspiration board for my benefit, as well as that of the client.
So, I thought I would do a little before and after....
All these inspiration boards were made prior to my event, to show the client what my vision was for the party. The next board is a collage of actual photos from the event, come to fruition.
I think you can see that I try to stay very close to my inspiration board when planning the actual details of the party. I actually didn't really even really how closely I use these board until I saw all these collages side by side!
A lot of people have asked me what program I use for these and I use Picasa. It's a free download from google and it is SUPER easy to use!