16 Mar 2014

Storyboarding Basics

Storyboarding  is a way to get your ideas out on paper. It’s useful as a reference when crafting and when you need to remember what moves and sounds to make for your show. Most storyboards look similar to a comic strip. 

To make a storyboard, you need to figure out the following:
  • ●  Setting(s)
  • ●  Character(s)
  • ●  Movements
  • ●  Sounds, Narration and/or Dialogue 
  • ●  Title 

Also think about: is your piece more about experimenting with the visuals, or does it have a clear storyline?  Both are okay to try. If it has a narrative storyline, what is the dramatic tension or problem that needs to be solved? How does the piece end?

  • Take a sheet of paper and divide it into squares (like a comic). 6 or 8 squares per sheet works well. Put the title of your piece in the first square. The second square is a good place to introduce the setting. Draw out the shadowplay roughly as you imagine it in the rest of the squares. Use arrows to show movement and write out any sounds & dialogue for each square. It’s not necessary to spend too much time on the drawings, you just want to get an idea of what your piece looks and sounds like.
    After you’ve got an idea of the sequence you want to create, get another sheet of paper and make a list of all the things you need to craft.
    Look at the list and see how many items there are. If there are a lot of complicated things to craft, is there any way that you can combine several things into one just by using it in a different way? Think about the different ways that you could portray each thing ­ for example, instead of crafting a puppet of a person, someone might use their silhouette. Do you want any special effects in your piece, such as holding a pan of water above the projector, layering the visuals with a flashlight, live drawing, or something else?

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