About storyboards and why they are important

Once a concept or script is written for a film or animation, the next step is to make a storyboard. A storyboard visually tells the story of a video panel by panel, kind of like a comic book.

Your storyboard will should convey some of the following information:

  1. What characters are in the frame, and how are they moving?
  2. What are the characters saying to each other, if anything?
  3. How much time has passed between the last frame of the storyboard and the current one?
  4. Where the "camera" is in the scene? Close or far away? Is the camera moving?

Creating a storyboard will help you plan your video/film out shot by shot. You can make changes to your storyboard before you start filming, instead of changing your mind later. You will also be able to talk about your film and show your storyboard to other people to get feedback on your ideas.

Most commonly, storyboards are drawn in pen or pencil. If you don't like to draw you can also take photos, cut out pictures from magazines, or use a computer to make your storyboards. For the music video for the band CORNER from Portland, OR Rocket House Pictures used stock photographs and hand drawn sketches. Later piecing them together in Photoshop.

Keep in mind that your drawings don't have to be fancy! In fact, you want to spend just a few minutes drawing each frame. Use basic shapes, stick figures, and simple backgrounds. If you draw your storyboard frames on index cards, you can rearrange them to move parts of the the story around.
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