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What is the difference between a storyboard and a script?


Simply put, a script is your video concept depicted in written text. A storyboard is your video concept depicted in pictures and some text.

What is a storyboard?


A storyboard is a sequence of sketches, drawings or illustrations that represent the scenes planned for a video. The storyboard is created before the actual filming of the video begins. It depicts all of the elements of the video. These can include images, action, text, narration, music, transitions, etc. The elements of the video are arranged in the storyboard in the chronological order in which they will appear in the video and this allows you to organize and rearrange the elements for the best results. It allows you to visualize how the project will be put together and helps to determine what else you may want to add since you can see the entire plan laid out in front of you. Storyboarding can also inspire new ideas. The most important thing about creating and using a storyboard is that it gives you a way to make the best decisions on how you will organize up your script into individual pieces so that you can get a clearer overview of your video plan.


There are many different kinds of videos and there are many different kinds of storyboards. The kind of storyboard you create depends on the video you are making and who is involved in the process. 

If you are working with a group, your storyboard will probably need to be clearer and more detailed so that everyone understands how the video will look. 

Storyboards may be created in a variety of ways, both digitally and on paper. If you create your storyboard on a computer there are a variety of software programs that you probably already have or have access to that can be used, such as Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint. 

You can create a simple storyboard by drawing a series of boxes with several lines for text beneath. The boxes are for you to make simple sketches or drawings of what elements and action you are planning to have appear in your video. The lines are for brief notes and direction. You can include things like actors, images, animation, props, music, video clips, text or any other elements you think of. Below is a sample of what your storyboard can look like. 


There are many different ways to create a storyboard. You can use a piece of computer paper and draw the columns and picture boxes, like the example above. You can customize your storyboard to suit your needs. You can download a template from the web. You can use an editable template on your phone, computer or pad. You may want to check if the software you use has templates, like Microsoft word or PowerPoint.

Below is a link to Storyboard Template from Google Docs:

You can edit with the Docs app, make tweaks, leave comments and share with your group to edit at the same time:

Below is a video about creating storyboards:

How to draw A-grade storyboards (even if you can't draw!) | Media studies tutorial: 13m 35s 


Why do you need a storyboard when you already created a script?


Video is a visual medium. It is important to see a visual representation of the script before any filming begins. Especially when working with a group. Everyone in the group could have different visual interpretations of what the scenes and the elements in the video will look like. A storyboard will help you organize everyone’s input and take ideas from each person in the group so that you can better plan your video together. Without a storyboard, you could lose time and end up having to re-shoot your video. 


If there are disagreements within your group, or if changes are required, then it’s much easier to make them at the storyboard stage than when the video has been filmed. The storyboard is your opportunity to perfect the visuals before you go ahead and create the video. 


How to create a storyboard:


Here is a list of steps involved: All of the steps may not apply to your video. Just skip the steps that are not relevant to your video: 


1. Break down your script: 

  • If you have not broken your script down into scenes, start by doing that. 

  • Use a different box or scene each time you are planning for the action in your video to change. 

  • Make sure you number each panel to ensure there is no confusion in the timeline of your video. 


2. Define your visual style: 


  • Visual style is something that does not always come across in a script. It needs to make sense in your storyboard.  


3. Make a list of graphics:


  • After you break your script down into numbered scenes and determine your visual style, you should create a list of things you need to draw. This step will help to make sure nothing is missed from your script. It also helps you to think about any extra details you might want to include in your video before you start filming. 


4. Start drawing: 


  • Create a storyboard that will work best for your project and start drawing. You can do this by downloading a template, use computer paper or index cards to sketch your storyboard or do it on a computer, tablet or phone by using an editable template or app. 


5. Add text descriptions: 


  • Once you have completed the visual part of the storyboard, you can add some text to each scene so that everyone who is going to review the storyboard can follow it. This could be your voiceover, character dialogue, or just a brief description of what is happening in each scene. 


6. Include videographer notes: 


  • It is also important to add notes to your visuals that will direct your videographers. Your notes can be brief descriptions or simple arrows that point in the direction you want the camera to move. Some other examples: if you want to see a pan, a tilt, a zoom, or a specific transition.


Review it with your group:


The final step in creating a storyboard is to review it with your whole group. One of the most important functions of a storyboard is to prevent time consuming and difficult changes at later stages in the production, so feedback is key. Collect feedback from everyone in your group and then apply any needed changes to your storyboard. 


Organization is critical to the success of your video project. If you don’t have much time to write your script and create your storyboard, another method you can use to help organize your video project is to write your script and create your storyboard by writing and drawing scenes on Post it notes or index cards. This will help you arrange your scenes and dialogue so that your video flows in a coherent manner. When they are organized, number them and place them in the order in which they will appear in the video. The Post it notes or index cards will represent the frames of your storyboard and will represent the images or scenes that take place. These frames will correspond to the order of your notes or index cards. 




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