If you’re asking how to make a storyboard you’re already on your way to creating an engaging story. Most people, myself included, often just dive into their creative work and skip the storyboard step, much to their detriment.
Whether you make presentations, movies, animations or write books or blogs, a storyboard helps you develop a stronger storyline. With a series of panels, each dedicated to a scene or concise idea, making a storyboard will help you to:
- Easily visualize your story
- Quickly break your story down to its component parts
- Save a lot of money on designers or shooting
- Distill your story so you can better pitch it to your boss, advertisers, investors, (or even your spouse)
- Come up with fresh ideas (storyboarding is also brainstorming!)
How to Storyboard
Making a storyboard and collaborating with others is fairly simple. It can be as rudimentary as writing ideas on sheets of paper and taping them to the wall. Or you can use software like SlideRocket to create a digital storyboard, which is of course easier to share and collaborate. We use both approachs, depending on the project.
Here are 7 Tips on How to Make a Storyboard
#1 Lay it out
Storyboards are a visual tool, so write (and draw) your ideas on a series of panels (we use presentation slides here at SlideRocket). Limit each panel to a single scene or idea – you can always consolidate (or cut) later.
#2 Get it all out there
Pour your ideas out on the storyboard panels and don’t hold back. Very much like a brainstorming session, your ideas should flow freely and a bit of stream of consciousness is just fine at this stage.
#3 Don’t be an artist
Don’t let the particulars of the storyboard slow you down (e.g., designs, wording). Focus on the story first – you can refine artwork and words later.
#4 Be true to your goal
Be clear at the beginning the message you want to convey and emotions you want your audience to experience. Remind yourself of these as you brainstorm and later as you refine your storyboard.
#5 Focus on the “Story Arc”
As you splash ideas on your storyboard work to first get your story “out”, then rearrange, cut and otherwise edit. Then you can go back and work out details. But definitely capture the details during brainstorming – they may be important later.
Working together almost always results in a better story. Different perspectives and different skill sets will strengthen your story. At SlideRocket we use the Collaboration and Comments feature to facilitate working together, often to great effect.
#7 Don’t be nostalgic
One byproduct of Collaboration will surely be the need to cull some of your ideas or creative. It’s best to maintain a thick skin at this stage. And when working in groups you’ll want to keep your sense of engagement in the project, even if some of your favorite ideas were cut.