I’m settling into a new project with a client. We’re trying to be careful about content strategy and planning before we climb into the design phase. As we set up our diagram to properly organize the information, we’re beginning to wireframe and discuss design.

This project was somewhat unique in that we wanted to show the client a presentable sketch before we even secured the contract. As a result, I put together a monochromatic sketch in PhotoShop, dropped in a stock image and they loved it. In these next steps however, I wanted a more stripped down wireframe so that the client does not get too distracted by typography, interface stylings, art and color. So, instead of going headlong into PhotoShop or Fireworks, I’m trying out an online wireframing tool called Mockingbird.

So far, I love it. I’m using the free trial at the moment. They have a series of plans where you pay as you go. The best part is the simplicity and clarity of the wireframe. The very nature of the wireframe lends itself to a simple pencil sketch. However, when your need to create PDFs for review, the scanned pencil to paper doc is inefficient. Conversely, when you jump into the digital environment, there is the temptation to show more than is needed. At the moment, Mockingbird is a good fit.