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Step-by-Step Guide to Storyboard

Liza Brown
Liza Brown
Originally published Jun 20, 22, updated Dec 05, 23
Step-by-Step Guide to Storyboard

An easy yet powerful editor

Numerous effects to choose from

Detailed tutorials provided by the official channel

Part 1 The Fundamentals to Get You Started on Storyboard

Speaking in the light of blooming your creative skills and abilities, the realm of graphic and video editing has managed to unleash a never ending and dimensionless canvas to experiment with your skills. Talking of the most recent add-ons to the already long list of utilities, storyboards have emerged as a revolution in the field of motion graphic customization and design.

Diving a bit deeper into understanding the credibility of storyboards, let us move ahead with having an insight of different aspects and elements of the same in the upcoming sections of this article:

What is a Storyboard?

Attempting to define a storyboard, you can regard the utility as a sequential setup of sketches, images, elements and illustrations that create a road map to address a video editing task. Dividing the entire process into a series of individual processes, the aforesaid facility caters to ease out the video creation task.

Moving ahead to draft a technical explanation of storyboards, they are a collection of chronologically arranged drawings, supplemented with video customization elements, such as dialogues, camera direction and other allied detailing. The fundamental merit of these visual arrangements lies in the sequential and scene unfolding of a video footage.

This in turn, works to simplify the film creation process, while ensuring the latter’s cohesiveness and facilitating the elimination of errors and inconsistencies. It is a common mistake to regard storyboards as a midway and optional utility, these trial and error representations are quite essential to ensure a flawless video output in the final stage of design. The facility works additionally to minimize unnecessary production delays, while significantly cutting down on the overall creation cost.

Having a visibility more or less similar to a comic strip, storyboards have a varying scale of design, ranging from being modestly simple to explicitly complex, in cohesion with the specific creation requirements. These visual scripts are mostly hand crafted, through there are a host of storyboard creation software packages and programs available in the IT design market, as well as across the web.

Extending our discussion a bit further, let us have a walk-through of the essential storyboard categories and types in what follows next:

Traditional Storyboards

These are a logically placed sequence of hand crafted drawings in ink or pencil for representing the video filming chronology, prior to the start of the actual creation process. You can conveniently observe the sequential arrangement of your video elements through these storyboards by placing them at a suitable space, like your studio wall.

You are granted the liberty to add as much detailing to these drawings as you wish, while using them for filming either a single or a series of film shots. These easily editable storyboards are often supplemented with written text notes for describing the events of a specific scene.

Types of Storyboards- Traditional Storyboard

Thumbnail Storyboards

These are rather small storyboards, mostly of a postage stamp size, that depict a sequence of the video elements and scenes on separate paper pieces. Owing to their miniature size, these storyboards are relatively easier to craft, require a lesser creation time and have much fewer details in comparison to their traditional counterparts.

This category of storyboards comes credible in catering a quick jot down of video creation ideas, before you proceed to analyze each element in a more comprehensive manner through the traditional alternatives.

Types of Storyboards- Thumbnail Storyboard

Animated Storyboards

This class of storyboards comes into play when you aim to craft complex video outlines, while supplementing the same with additional elements of music and dialogues. These are designed essentially to depict the general scene flow through the characteristics of time and pace in a series of animated sketches.

As of creating these storyboards, there is a diversity of online and software based utilities to address the concern. Such facilities work to integrate the images within a sketch into a single video, while adding life to the footage within a span of several minutes. The creation process is quite simple, without a download or software learning requirement.

Types of Storyboards- Animated Storyboard

01What are the Advantages of Using a Storyboard?

Now that you have developed a fundamental understanding of what is a storyboard, it is of great importance to know the utility is not just limited to crafting a sequential video script. There are a heap of additional merits that come at your disposal when you opt to create an outline for a visual footage with the facility. Discussing along the line, let us have a walk-through of the benefits of working with storyboards in what follows next:

02Merits of Using Storyboards

Cut Down on Errors and Unnecessary Costs

Encountering mistakes in the video creation process is a rather common incident, but can cause serious and undesired financial implications. While using the storyboard facility does not absolutely guarantee the absence of errors, it can work to potentially reduce the intensity and financial impact involved in fixing the issue. With a little bit of extra effort and employing your creative assets, you can bring down the cumulative video creation cost to a significant level.

Get a Futuristic Preview of Your Video

When you have crafted a storyboard for a video you are about to create, it becomes quite easy to visualize the sequential flow of the latter’s elements and scenes. This in turn, grants you the liberty to decide on the suitability of particular shots in a close observation. While you can choose to retain the perfect ones, there is a chance to improvise the video pieces that fall short of the credibility mark.

You are additionally facilitated with the scope of crafting a series of storyboards for a specific video creation idea. This allows a comparative analysis of the different film design prospects, so that you can easily pick the best and most cohesive presentation sequence and style with respect to the liking and interest of your target audience.

Simplify the Video Creation Process

The storyboard utility is advantageous in providing you with a clear and targeted vision to proceed with the video production process. Functioning more like a road map, the utility caters to guide you at every step of creating, styling, customizing and animating your footage. The overall impact of using the facility is an improved working efficiency, surety of following the right direction and saving a lot of precious time.

Develop an Enhanced Collaboration with Your Creative Team

If you are working with software based storyboarding assets, most of the times you may be facilitated with an option to share and collaborate your work. Apart from being the perfect stage to discuss the different ideas of video production, storyboard collaboration works to extend a cohesive response from your creative team to deliver a high end video production output by having enough to discuss about crafting, improving and styling the footage.

Bring In Potential Investors

A well-crafted storyboard is a concise and futuristic representation of a video or film creation project that you are planning to take on the floors. You can use these cost effective ideas to put forward the blueprint of your craft, production creativity and vision in front of your targeted project investors.

This will in turn, give you an exact idea of their funding constraints, while simultaneously letting the investors have a deep insight about what to expect in the final production output. What’s best is, you don’t need high end accessories to showcase your art. An normal paper and pencil drawing will work fine.

03Great and Rare Storyboard Examples

Walking through the significance and benefits of working with storyboards can be a sufficient motivation to try hands at crafting out your own art pieces with the facility. It is however, always a smart choice to observe and study some actual creation examples to improvise your understanding of the concept to proceed with a greater confidence towards the production process.

Adhering to the concern, here are a few state of the art storyboard creation examples to boost up your familiarity and confidence to work with these video scripts. You can additionally draw out a diversity of ideas and thoughts to use in your project from these examples.

Spiderman 2 Action Sequence

The following is an animated storyboard example from the classic Spiderman 2 movie released in 2004. The drawing represents a fight sequence between the hero Spiderman and Dr Octopus, his villainous counterpart at the top of a high speed moving train. Being a visually spectacular piece of graphic art, the video script aims to showcase a clear depiction of the moving elements within each of the sequentially arranged shots in a specific direction. This facilitates a concise and exact understanding of the final production output requirement by the video creation team.

Great and Rare Storyboard Examples- Spiderman 2 Action Sequence

Tomorrow Never Dies

The following video storyboard aims at depicting an escape sequence from the Tomorrow Never Dies flick, centered on the adventures of James Bond, the epic fictional detective. While the latter is customary to dramatic refuges, this one claims to be an inaugural attempt under a big production banner.

Extending the lineage of the top rated storyboards, this video script also targets the depiction of the pivotal shots to be filmed out. A few of the elements include James Bond attempting to cut through the rope with a gigantic knife, an inversely panned shot of a banner being torn from the center, and the mid-air swinging of James Bond with his lady love.

Great and Rare Storyboard Examples- Tomorrow Never Dies

The Sound of Music

If you are fascinated towards creating musical video and film production, referring the following storyboard can present before you an expansive and impressive set of ideas. This storyboard was essentially crafted by Maurice Zuberano for sketching out the musical and dance sequences of the movie, The Sound of Music. While the aforesaid storyboard bears the closest possible resemblance to the original scene in the film, you can take a look at the same to achieve a notable perfection in video scripting.

Great and Rare Storyboard Examples- The Sound of Music

Part 2 How to Turn a Script into a Storyboard?

Crafting storyboards for video production is a wise step to avail a series of economic and design centered benefits. While the utility works to define a sequential arrangement of shots and elements in a specific video scene, the real effort lies in converting a text centered movie or scene script into a storyboard. Talking of the ways to address this concern, let us discuss about these storyboard essentials in some detail in what follows next:

What Comes First – Script or Storyboard?

Before beginning to comment on the sequence of the aforesaid elements within a film production process, let us first proceed to have an understanding of the terms in a fundamental sense. A script is essentially a text based document that presents a cumulative picture of the video story by unveiling the latter’s storyline and theme. Storyboards on the other hand, are pictorial representations of sequentially arranged shots of the movie with a much more comprehensive detailing.

Going through the above definitions, the obvious and logical sequence of filming out a video is quite clear with scripts preceding the storyboards. Talking a bit on the credibility aspect of these video production stages, the film’s script caters to provide an elementary insight into some of the most essential visual commands. Crafting a storyboard on the other hand, is dedicated towards depicting a detailed follow through of each shot in line with the events described in the script.

Working towards a classic and professional video production task, hence demands a drafting of the latter’s script, which is then succeeded by crafting a storyboard. This facilitates a seamless and easy video creation process with lesser ambiguities. Having talked enough about scripts and storyboards, let us now move ahead with creating storyboards from a film script in the following section:

User’s Guide to Transform a Script into a Storyboard

Step 1: Identify and Pen Down an Amazing Content Idea

Begin with identifying a captivating story idea that you desire of implementing into a video production.

Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Identifying an Idea

When you have found one, proceed to jot down the same in relatable and cohesive text to keep a record of the same.

Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Penning Down the Idea

This will help you to structurize the plot of your story and decide the flow of the events occurring within.

Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Final Film Script

Step 2: Let’s Start Storyboarding!

Move ahead to planning the sequential placement of shots and scenes of the story in line with the script that you have just created. It is a great idea to pick an array of 4-6 movement shots for a particular scene, so that you can have a sufficient cell spacing to expand the detailing of shot elements. This further caters to a convenient and spatial arrangement of the cells on a standard sized paper.

You can now start to create your storyboard by adding labels to the scenes, penning down the directions, including the specific character dialogues and suitable images.

Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Breakdown of a Storyboard Cell

Step 3: Prepare a Layout of Your Storyboards

When you are done with adding all the elements of the script into the storyboard cells, proceed to lay them out in a specific pattern. This step comes quite handy in checking for the continuity and detailing accuracy of the depicted shots. You can further, improvise the elements if needed, or advance to the next step if everything seems fine.


Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Laying Out the Storyboards

Step 4: Revise Your Craft

Being an experienced and professional worker, you may well proceed to start filming your video at this stage. In an otherwise case however, you may need to make a revision of the crafted storyboard for a much more detailed and comprehensive observation. You can work to include an elusive paly of effects, lighting cues, background music and characters, camera motions, and a series of additional elements that seem to uplift your creation.

Paying attention to the aspect or revising your storyboards caters to a much more improvised and professionally sound presentation of your video production idea in front of the target audience. If not so, you can make your roughly crafted storyboard shine on with a little bit of extra and finer detailing, and that is it! Your story is ready to strike the floors!

Creating Storyboards from Scripts- Revising the Storyboard

How Can I Get Better at Storyboarding?

Speaking in the light of film production assets and utilities, storyboarding is more of a creative art rather than a customary process or production stage. While it requires consistent effort and practice to master the craft, adhering to some handy tips and tricks can be of great help to improve your skills at creating expressive and finely detailed storyboards.

Heading towards sorting the aforesaid query, the following section presents a concise description of a few amazing and unique storyboard creation guidelines and tricks to present the storyboarding craft at its best:

Stop Aiming to Become a Perfectionist

Considering the fact that you are crafting the storyboard just for the purpose of depicting a sequence of video shots, do not aim at defining every element in comprehensive detail. Instead of making a fresh attempt to depict every minor change, pay more attention towards highlighting the significant points of action within a particular scene.

Prefer Numbering the Storyboard Panels

Since the storyboard you are creating works as a blueprint for the video creation team, it should be convenient to understand and navigate through. Presenting the cells of your storyboard in a numbered sequence tends to provide an easy follow through of the same to the rest of your viewers.

Explore Your Imagination

Your storyboard happens to be the inaugural representation of your video production idea and script in front of the potential audience. You should hence, proceed with the latter’s crafting process while keeping a close reference with the drafted script. Also, it becomes greatly important to add the imaginative element to your creation to avoid creating an bland and customary impression on the audience.

Feedback Has a Great Importance

Make sure to showcase your storyboard to your project investors, prior to beginning with the film creation process. This will aid you with an escape from the unnecessary changes that can pop out from the audience at the last minute, leading to an unwanted financial expense. Pay attention to gather and work on the feedback of the viewers and start the actual creation process only after everything seems to be well settled.

Enjoy Your Work

Enjoying the different aspects of your work is the key to achieve mastery at your craft and a welcoming response from the audience. Accepted that the storyboarding process is mind straining and time consuming, but taking on the challenge with a fun centered attitude will let your hard work shine on in front of the viewers.

Creating Storyboards with Wondershare Filmora

Creating storyboards in the traditional paper and pencil format is undoubtedly an absolute fun activity, but it has the limitations of a customary image drawing. If you want to supplement the contents of your storyboard with additional elements of animations, effects, background themes and music, it would be better to work with storyboard creator software.

Browsing through the heap of alternatives across the web and the IT market, you can conveniently choose to work with the Wondershare Wondershare Filmora Video Editor to address the concern. The obvious reason behind the huge preference ratio of the software is its feature rich library. The editor’s customization space houses a plethora of theme centered storyboard templates, along with extensive diversities of audio-visual effects, filters and elements to adorn your craft with elegance and appropriate detailing at the same time.

Try It Free

For Win 7 or later (64-bit)

Try It Free

For macOS 10.12 or later

Part 3 Storyboard Q&A

How can the storyboard creation process be quickly addressed?

When aiming to quickly address the concern of creating storyboards, picking up an online template is a better option in comparison to the traditional pencil and paper drawing. As of working with the web based alternatives, you can add sketches, scripts and notes within the storyboard cells to make them more impressive and detailed.

What should be the ideal expanse of a storyboard?

There is no hard and fast rule to decide the optimum number of cells or pages for your storyboard. The page count may have variations in line with the content and detailing of the scenes they are crafted to showcase.

Is it essential to include every shot within the storyboard?

On a general note, every shot within your script does not require an inclusion within the storyboard. The answer to this query however, largely depends on the intensity of detailing you wish to add and the diversity of ideas and elements you want to incorporate within the storyboard of a specific film scene.

What are the essentials of a good storyboard?

When attempting to create a good storyboard, pay attention to the fluent transition of the text centered ideas into pictorial representations. Your video script should possess the right quantity of information to make anyone easily understand the content depiction without having a prior walk-through of your script. Abstain from creating an information overflow either, lest you would end up hiding away the relevant details.

What are the major parts of a storyboard?

A well-crafted storyboard comprises of 4 important elements. There are namely, the subject of the shot or scene, a suitable and cohesive background, a properly angled camera shot of the main character within the scene and a responsive camera movement.

Ending Thoughts

Storyboards are considered as crucial elements of the video customization process with the domain of professional film production.

When turning your text based script into a storyboard, pay enough heed towards assuring a seamless transition of words into relevant images.

If you are concerned about choosing a reliable software alternative to work with crafting storyboards, you can end your search by picking the Wondershare Filmora editor program.

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