So far, we've only looked at our information in a spreadsheet-like grid. However, in Airtable, you're not restricted to viewing your information in a grid: by making different types of views, you can seamlessly switch between looking at your records as rows in a grid, cards on a kanban board, or as events on a calendar.
- The default view type is grid view, which displays a grid with your records as rows and your fields as columns. Each table must have at least one grid view.
- Grid views have a number of special features, like grouped records and the summary bar.
- Calendar view displays your records as events on a calendar. Your table must have at least one date field in order to make a calendar view.
- Kanban view displays your records as cards on a kanban board. Your table must have at least one single select field or single collaborator field in order to make a kanban view.
- Gallery view displays your records as large cards and is particularly good for showing off images.
- Forms can also be created from the view bar and are used to add new records to your table.
Grid view is the default type of view, and it displays your records as rows and your fields as columns in a grid. Each table needs to have at least one grid view.
Grid views are all-around useful and are particularly helpful when you're trying to add new information to a table. For example, with a grid view, you can easily copy and paste information from a traditional spreadsheet program or another Airtable base as a way of quickly adding in information.
Let's return to the "All Artists" view in our Pacific Records base and make a couple more customizations that are specific to grid views.
In a grid view, you can group records together based on their shared values in one or more fields. It's a great way to make quick visual distinctions between the different records in your table. Go ahead and click the group records button in the view bar to bring up the grouped records menu.
You'll see a notice indicating "No groupings applied to this view." Go ahead and click the Pick a field to group by dropdown, then select the Status single select field. This will split our artist roster into different groups based on the values in the Status field.
You can change the values for a record by dragging it from one group to another group. Try dragging one of the records from one group to another—the value in the Status field will automatically change accordingly.
By default, the rows in grid view have a short height in order to display at maximum density. If you'd like to see larger attachments and more text per record, you can increase the heights of your rows using the row height button.
Let's adjust the row height to medium to give us just a little more room.
When you scroll horizontally while in a grid view, the primary field (the first field from the left) is frozen so that it's always visible. You can adjust how many fields are frozen when you scroll by clicking and dragging the position of the frozen column divider separating the primary field from the rest of the fields. (Let's leave just the primary field frozen for now.)
While in grid view, the summary bar provides different types of summarizations of all the cell values in a given field and appears at the bottom of the table. Just move your mouse over the bar at the bottom of the screen underneath the field you're interested in seeing a summary for.
Different field types will have different summarization functions available: number fields will have a lot of potential options, like Sum, Average, Min, Max, or Standard Deviation; date fields will have options like Earliest Date or Date Range (Months); etc.
When your records are grouped, an additional summary bar will appear at the top of each group showing summary totals for the subgroups. This can be particularly useful if you've collapsed any of your groups.
With a calendar view, you can display your records as event cards on a calendar, which you can move around to reschedule events as needed. Calendar views are great for visualizing schedules and deadlines or planning events. In order to make a calendar view, your table needs to have at least one date field.
Let's make a calendar view that shows our artists' contract expiration dates. To make a new calendar view, open up the view switcher by clicking on the dropdown arrow next to the name of the current view. From within the view switcher, click on the Calendar option in the Add a view section of of the view switcher.
This will bring up a configuration dialog asking you to select a date field to use to set up the calendar view. We only have one date field in the Artists table right now—Contract End—so go ahead and select Contract End as the date field, then click the Done button.
Once you've selected a date field, your calendar view will populate with records according to the dates in the Contract End field. Let's go ahead and give this new calendar view a more descriptive name, like "Contract End Dates."
You can navigate your calendar view by clicking the forward and backward arrows next to the date range; click the Today button to jump back to the current date. If you'd like, you can also adjust your calendar's date mode from the default month mode to 2 week, week, 3 day, or day mode.
Click on any of the cards on the calendar to open up a mini-editor, from which you can edit the primary field or the associated date field being used for scheduling. Clicking on the Edit details button will fully expand the record.
Clicking and dragging a card on the calendar will reschedule the event, editing the value in its date field. Dragging a record card from the record list sidebar onto a date on the calendar will also change an event's date. If you drag a record to the sidebar, that will clear the value in the date field, "unscheduling" it.
If you're inside a base that's part of a workspace on a Pro plan, you'll have access to a set of advanced calendar features, designed so that teams with calendar-intensive workflows can get extra insights from their records and design extra-powerful calendars. With advanced calendar features, you can:
- select two different date fields in order to define a range
- plot multiple calendars on a single view
- use record coloring to color the cards with custom filtering conditions
With a kanban view, you can visualize all your records as stacks of cards on a board. The different stacks are defined by a designated single select field or single collaborator field; you can click and drag a record card from one stack to another to alter the value in its single select field or reassign it to a different collaborator.
Let's make a kanban view that stacks our artists by their contract status. To make a new kanban view, open up the view switcher by clicking on the dropdown arrow next to the name of the current view. From within the view switcher, click on the Kanban option in the Add a view section of of the view switcher.
This will bring up a configuration dialog asking you to select a grouping field to determine how the record cards get stacked. You are required to pick a single select or single collaborator field. We only have one qualifying field in our Artists table right now—Status—so go ahead and select Status, then click the Done button.
Once you've selected a grouping field, your kanban view will populate with records arranged into stacks based on the options from the Status single select field. Let's go ahead and give this new view a more descriptive name, like "Kanban by Status."
You can customize the appearance of your cards by clicking on the Customize cards button. From this menu, you can toggle the visibility of each field to make sure that just the fields you want to see are showing. Let's customize these cards so that just the contract end dates are showing.
You can collapse a stack by clicking on the collapse icon at the bottom of a stack, which looks like two arrows pointing together. As mentioned before, you can also click and drag to move cards between stacks, or reorder cards within a stack.
A gallery view represents your records as large cards in a grid. While an attachment field is not required to make a gallery view, gallery views are particularly good for showing off images.
Let's make a gallery view that shows off the pictures of the artists that we have in the Photos field. To make a new gallery view, open up the view switcher by clicking on the dropdown arrow next to the name of the current view. From within the view switcher, click on the Gallery option in the Add a view section of of the view switcher.
Let's rename this view to "Artist Photos." Notice that the tops of the cards in this new gallery view are displaying big versions of the images that you uploaded to the Photos field earlier. That's because the Photos field is the designated cover field for this new gallery view. By default, a new gallery view will detect if you have any attachment fields and set the first of those attachment fields as the cover field for your cards.
You can customize how your cards appear in the gallery view by clicking on the Customize cards button. From this menu, you can change which attachment field is designated as the cover field, and choose whether the images on the cover fields will crop (fill the entire photo area by zooming and cropping the photo) or fit (zoom out to show the entire photo). Alternatively, you can choose to have no cover field, if you'd like. You can also toggle the field visibility on and off to make sure that just the fields you want to see are showing, or rearrange the order of the fields on the cards by clicking and dragging the field drag handles.
Let's customize these cards to show just the Status, Genres, and Bio for each artist, in that order. Also note that as with a kanban view, you can click and drag gallery cards to reorder them as you'd like.
Forms are special because they're primarily designed for feeding information into your base, rather than viewing information that's already in your base. With forms, you can collect information from anyone and save it automatically to an Airtable base—great for logging expenses, polling your colleagues, collecting customer information, and many other purposes.
As a record executive, you're always on the lookout for up-and-coming new artists to sign. Let's make a form so that we can add prospective artists to our base on the fly. To make a new form, click on the dropdown arrow next to the name of the current view, and from within the view switcher, click on the Form option.
This will open up the form builder, which you can use to put together your perfect form before sharing it with others. The fields on the form are automatically populated based on the fields in the table. You can give your form a title and description by clicking in the header section—we can call it something like "Prospect Sourcing Form."
You can customize which fields appear on your form and the order in which they appear. To remove a field from the form, just drag and drop it onto the left side of the form builder; to reorder a field, click on it and then drag it using the drag handle that appears.
We want this form to be as quick as possible for us to fill out while we're on the go, so let's remove all of the fields except for Name, Genre, and Bio.
Clicking on any of the fields in the form builder will bring up a number of options to customize how a field displays on a form: you can change the field's name as it will appear on the form, add some help text, or make a field required in order for the form to be successfully submitted.
If your base is part of a workspace with an Airtable Pro plan, you can add a cover image and logo to the form to further customize its appearance.
Once you're done customizing your form, you can click on the Share form button to get the link to the form that you can share with other people, or you can click the Open form button to start using it or sharing it.
You now know how to make all different kinds of views, how to customize those views, and when each view type might be useful. Next, we'll learn how to take advantage of Airtable's database powers to take your base to the next level.
(You can also copy the embedded base above if you're looking to skip ahead.)