Create a Storyboard
What Is a Storyboard?
A storyboard is a visual outline of a film (be it a short film or feature film) that looks like a comic strip. It’s an important part of the preproduction process and consists of a series of images that show everything that’s going to happen in your finished piece.
Many storyboards are hand-drawn, but some creators or animators choose to use storyboarding software. The finished result resembles a comic book or a graphic novel. Storyboards can also be drawn with stick figures or done with photos of people standing in for actors, or photos from environments pulled from the internet.
Think of the storyboard as a bunch of picture snapshots of your script where each panel represents a new camera angle or a key moment in the action.
How to Make a Storyboard in 4 Easy Steps
Follow these steps to create your first storyboard.
- Make a shot list. Take a scene from your script and make a shot list. How can particular camera angles tell the story, or make a moment more impactful? What can you reveal about your characters and the story via camera angles? Draw a rough sketch of your shot list.
- Sketch it out. Whether you’re working on a feature film or a short animation, choose one of the more complex sequences, and scope out a vision for the scene. List all of the shots that you anticipate needing as raw material, and then sketch them out in the squares of your storyboard, like a comic strip. If you’re not much of an artist, it’s fine to use basic shapes and stick figures on a piece of paper. But if you’re not getting the effect you want, you can work with a storyboard artist to make changes or map out a proposed sequence. If you need help finding an experienced and qualified artist, consider starting your search on Jorgen’s List, Upwork, or the public Facebook group “Frame Dump.”
- Fill in details. Your storyboard has to contain the most important elements of each scene. But while it’s a static image, the end result will be a moving video or animation that follows the entire storyline. With that in mind, be sure to indicate motion in your storyboard. For example, you can indicate the direction a person is walking with arrows. You’ll also want to include any props that will be present in the final product, as well as the camera angles and framing of each shot. A good rule of thumb is to include a general outline of all of the relevant details of each shot, without going too deep into distracting details.
- Add words. Once you’ve created the images, it might help to add additional words at the bottom of the images to give more context about what’s going on. This is a great place in the storyboard process to include anything that can’t be expressed in your simple drawings, like any voice over you plan to include.
Submit Your Storyboard
Follow these steps to submit your storyboard on EL3.
- Go to https://el-3.org/
- Sign in using your D65 student number and password. If you are not a D65 student, ether create an account on EL3 or sign in using your EL3 username and password.
- Enter GYX62 for the group code to join the Film It! group if this is your first time submitting.
- Go to the Film It! “Activities” group.
- Start the “Create a Storyboard” activity.
- Upload a picture in EL3 using the box at the bottom and submit.