One of the projects we were involved with in our previous job (before we founded Digital Storytelling Asia) was the making of our organisation’s corporate video. The professional filmmakers we engaged asked us for the script.
Based on the rough story ideas we had, we got carried away asking them to shoot all kinds of video shots. But they would not start production. They said, “Please give us your script first. We don’t want to waste time or resources taking photos or videos that we won’t need.”
It didn’t make much sense to us then till we joined our first digital storytelling workshop and till we started facilitating our own workshops and watched participants make the same mistakes we made of not making a storyboard.
We learned the very obvious but often neglected lesson of planning. In this case, storyboarding – the blueprint of your story, the plan, the guide, or whatever you call it.
Filmmakers use storyboarding to help them visualise the interaction and sequencing of images, voice-over, visual, and sound effects, among others.
Storyboarding is one of the things we teach in our digital storytelling workshop. It will help storytellers decide what images they need and don’t need. Given the time constraints in the workshop, participants can’t afford to waste time looking for or creating images that they won’t actually need for their stories.
Even though we have progressed many notches in our ability to create digital stories, we never stray away from using a simple storyboard.
Recently, I found 500 Storyboard Tutorials and Resources. While most of these aren’t really for digital storytelling production, it’s worth checking out – for fun and for more ideas. – ALC