A Storyboard Primer

Every week, I’ve been posting information on what I’ve been working on and thinking about during the week. This week, my focus has transitioned to developing and designing storyboards for two different projects.  A few weeks, I talked about wireframing and it’s importance in the development of graphical user interfaces. This week, I will be providing resources and information on storyboarding .

The web has great resources for storyboarding. There are a number of companies that specialize in the development of storyboards for clients but also resources posted by universities in support of course work. For this post, I’ve pulled key points from “The Animation Book” by Kit Laybourne. I bought this book for an animation course I took in 1993 and am delighted to see that it is still in print.  I will also be checking out the new book that Kit Laybourne has published called. MEDIApedia.

The following text are my notes  from The Animation Book.

A  definition of storyboarding.

  • The storyboard is a conceptual planning aid used in all kinds of filming but was originally developed specifically for animation.
  • The storyboard is  a collected series of single pictures each of which represents a distinct sequence of narrative element within an animation, film, or video.

Storyboard Styles

  • They can be very polished and refined storyboards that reach the level of art.
  • Storyboards can also be informal sketches
  • Sketches for storyboards can be done quickly and revised often.

Storyboard Function

  • Conceptualization is the essential function of a storyboard.
  • The use of small sketches provides the animator or filmmaker a clear and inexpensive way to to work out style, continuity and the visual approach to the work.
  • A storyboard is extremely useful for explaining concepts and visual look and feel to clients and stakeholders.
  • The process of visual thinking may release new ideas and lead to revisions of the board.
  • A storyboard is also good to allow one to see the problems but also allows other access to the idea so that brainstorming and creativity can be expanded upon.

A few tools for storyboarding

  • Traditional Tools: Pen, Pencil, Paper
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe Photoshop

A free storyboarding template provided by XInsight.


Additional Resources