How to Make a Storyboard for Video

April 12, 2022
April 12, 2022 Zee Dichev

Storyboarding process is a vital step in the pre-production process, yet one that many people think they can skip over entirely.

This step of the pre-production allows you to plan out the visuals of your project, piece by piece, giving you room to adjust and re-plan if things aren’t working out. You wouldn’t go into a project planning to create a script on the fly, so why would you create the visuals that way?

Functionally, a storyboard is a graphic for your project. Built off of the shot list, storyboarding fleshes the concept of your video out further, leading to an easier production process.

What is a Storyboard?

Storyboard About a Man Cooking

Visually, a storyboard appears like an extended comic strip. First developed by Walt Disney in the 1930s, these collections of sketches create something like a video script or visual map of the plot for the filmmaker.

Storyboards are not flipbooks. They don’t need to show every single movement or visual that is going to appear in the final product.

Instead, it should capture the general visual idea of your project. The layout of a scene, placement of characters, big movements and things of that nature.

How do I Create One?

Don’t let anyone tell you that you need special software or fantastic artistic skills to create a storyboard. A storyboard can be as simple as stick figures on a piece of paper, or as complex as rendered 3D animations. Whatever allows you to concretely visualize your project is all the detail you need.

The first step towards creating a storyboard is making a list of key scenes. From this list, you can start to sketch out the action, layout, and movement of those key scenes. You can do this on flash cards, within a storyboard software, or anywhere else that works for you.

Once you have your key scenes sketched out, put them in order following the layout of the script. Make sure that you have all important shots and movements drawn.

Congratulations! You’ve just created one.

This step can seem like a terrifying process, but it doesn’t need to be. So long as you follow along with the script and don’t try to do more than you need to, a storyboard will greatly enhance the production process of your project.

What do I do Once I’ve Created a Storyboard?

Once you’ve created your storyboard, the next thing to do is to start producing your project. Whether it’s a film, commercial, animation, industrial video, or any other type of visual project, you can take the rough sketches you’ve created and turn them into finalized visuals.

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