Introduction: Guide to Creating a Storyboard
This instructable is a guide on how to create a storyboard. This is a fairly easy process, and all it takes is a little fun and imagination. There are many methods on creating a storyboard, but this instructable will only show two of those. One is creating it by hand, and the other method is using the CELTX program. Using CELTX is probably the simplest in terms of getting it done and simpleness. However, it doesn't have many creative features, so it doesn't have as much deatails. While creating one by hand takes a bit longer, but is more detailed and creative. Using CELTX is for those who want the storyboard to be simple and quick, while a hand written storyboard is for those who are more creative and want more description in the storyboard.
Step 1: Storyboard Basics - Sequences (Scenes) and Shots
All storyboards have Sequence, which is an entire scene of the film. Normally sequences change with the setting.
EX.) One sequence will take place at school, while the next will take place at a local park.
All sequences must have a title. The title highlights whether the scene is inside or outside, and says where it takes place.
EX.) INT. Inside a School.
-in this example, the sequence is inside (INT.), and it's in a school. If it takes place outside, type in EXT.
Shots are every set of actions that goes on in the film. These describe the specific actions that characters in your film perform. With every set of actions comes another shot. Shots are titled with the scene # and the shot #--
EX.) Shot 4.11
In this example, the shot is take place in Scene 4 and it is the 11th set of actions. There can be as many shot as you like in each scene, but make sure it is in a reasonable amount.
That's all there is to say about Scenes and Shots... Now comes the good part. The next step will teach you about storyboarding skills.
Step 2: Storyboard Format (Hand-written)
Creating a storyboard by hand is very fun but time consuming, As it requires more detail. The format for the storyboard is the same for both the CELTX program and a hand written one. As explained in the previous step, the title of the sequence goes on the top left corner of the paper, and the shots begin below the sequence title. The shots should be drawn in boxes large enough to fit 3 across the paper and 2 down the paper. The shot number goes first, and beside it is the shot type (the shot type determines where and how the camera will be placed). Below the shot number and type is the shot description, which will explain how the shot works out. Then below that is the actual shot, where you will DRAW it in. Also, number the shots in numerical order, while keeping the sequence number in mind. The sequence number is the first number in the shot, while the number of the shot in that sequence is the second number...
EX.) Shot 4.11
The first number represents the sequence... and the second number is the shot in that sequence. This is just an example. If it was the very first shot it would be titled Shot 1.1 then go to Shot 1.2 then Shot 1.3, etc. Only after you finish that sequence can you then move on to sequence number two, then the shots would be titled shot 2.1, then 2.2, then 2.3, etc.
Step 3: Storyboard Format (CELTX)
The format used in CELTX is exactly like the format used in hand written storyboards. The only difference is that it is computerized, and the interface is easy to follow. In order to create a storyboard with CELTX, you need to follow a certain pattern. There are two boxes that are found under each shot title/type. First, to start off the drawings, click [add sketch] on the bottom box. Then another screen should show up. On this screen, you are able to draw/create the shot. On the right side of the screen, there should be some tools to label some items/people. Create the specific shot, select [export file] near the top-right corner, then save it to your desktop (ensure you can find it later, you'll need it). Once that's all finished, go back to the storyboard screen and click the box above the box you selected that says [add image], then your files should appear. Find the shot you just created, and select it. The image will appear in the box that once said [add image]. Continue this for each shot you need, and once each shot is finished in the first sequence, move on to the next, and repeat this process until the entire film is complete. It takes a while to complete, but if you know what you're doing, it becomes quite easy. Again, this takes time to complete, so don't expect to finish it in one day. There is also a description box to explain what goes on in each specific shot. Fill this out to make things easier, you can also describe how and where the camera is positioned.
Step 4: Shot Types
There are a list of shot types that are found in CELTX. If you click the arrow on the tab that's beside the shot number, then an entire list of shot types should appear. These describe what type of shot it is (hence the name - shot type) and where/how the camera will be positioned. Here are some examples of some of the shots that are shown:
Wide-Shot - The camera covers a wide area at any particular angle. Good for when you want to cover a big area.
Close-up - The camera is up close to someone's face, as if doing an interview. Shows someone's upper body.
CGI - Computer Generated Image - An image that is computerized. You need an editing system to create this.
Two-Shot - A shot that shows two people. Normally used for conversations between two people.
Also, make sure you apply these to the hand-written storyboards as well, just put them beside the shot number.
Step 5: Storyboarding Tips + Outro
There isn't much to say now about creating storyboards, but some tips will be helpful.
First of all, create the script for your film, then your storyboard. Follow the events that happen on your script to understand what goes on in your storyboard.
Next, stay calm when creating your storyboard - DO NOT RUSH IT! It's better to take your time and plan accordingly to the script.
If you are using CELTX, don't expect things to turn out all detailed and pretty. It's just an easy to use program that helps with the format. The drawing aspect of it isn't very detailed. You only get limited icons and shapes, so use them the best you can.
For hand-written storyboards, make sure that your drawings are detailed enough to understand what's going on. Write a very brief description on what's going on in each shot as well. This takes time, so don't rush it.
That's all there is to this instructable on creating storyboards. So now that you have a better understanding of how things work, good luck on creating your storyboard to your script (if you haven't already). With that, I bid you farewell.
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