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Author: Alex Koppelman

To simplistically show the purpose of story boarding and how it is done. 

This tutorial shows how to storyboard for a start stop animation project. Start stop animation or "claymation," is done by taking a still image, moving a character or item, and taking another still image. After repeating this process several times the combined images (in order) will show your item or character moving. However, this tutorial focuses on how to storyboard. 


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What is a Story Board?

A story board maps out how the order, shots, and action of film. It looks a lot like a comic book. Check out the Calvin and Hobbes comic below. If you were to make this into a movie, you would know exactly how it should look.


Why Story Board?

Story boarding is important because it allows the director to visualize how a film will be shot. This is not the same as a script. A story board is made after the script or the basic plot. A good story board will include what type of shot i.e (establishing, zoom, pan, high angle) and a brief description of the action. Timing and sound effects are also good notes to have. 

Watch the claymation video below and then we will look at how it was story boarded. 

Gold 3 Claymation

A video I made for my AmeriCorps NCCC team, "Gold 3." At the time we were working at a camp called Cedar Crest. This is a comical take on our camp director's advice about the possibility of encountering a bear.

How to Story Board

Story boarding is done by drawing pictures that show roughly how each shot is supposed to look. It doesn't have to be a great picture or even a good picture. It just has to have enough detail to show what the shot's supposed to look like.

Next to your pictures you should include notes. These should list what number shot, what type of shot, and a brief description of dialogue and sound effects.

Check out how the story board for the claymation video was made. (You can download the blank template for use.)


Story Board Complete