Content Creation Cycle
There are a large number of forms your teaching session can take. In a previous post we discusseed a number of options for a flipped classroom.
If you have decided to incorporate video, it is critical to plan the video. Shooting, editing, recording audio, producing graphics is very time-consuming and expensive, so planning the video helps you define your video. It tells everyone what shots will be required, what graphics are needed.
I have found that the best way to do this is by storyboarding your video, after the objectives have been defined and the content material developed. The idea of storyboarding and techniques were originally created by Walt Disney. A storyboard allows you to plan how you will visually tell your story. This allows the scope the production before picking up the camera.
The important thing about storyboards is that they give you a way to decide how you will split up your script into individual segments, either with or without placeholder images, so that you can then get a clearer overview of your digital story plan. It is the equivalent of creating an outline for paper or blog post.
Creating storyboards may seem like a tedious extra step. However, storyboarding can be a valuable component in the creative process by allowing you to organize images and text in a blueprint fashion. It allows you to visualize how the project will be put together and help illustrate what holes exist since you can see the entire plan laid out in front of you. Storyboarding can also inspire new ideas as well as lets you easily rearrange existing resources before the final development begins and changes would be harder to make.
Storyboards may be created in a variety of ways, both digitally and manually on paper. You can use a computer, iPad, notecards, notebook, or even loose leaf copier paper. I personally favor digital storyboarding, and am a fan of using Paper on iPad. But there is really no restrictions on how you work.
A storyboard is a sequential description of the elements of the story such as images, text, narration, music, transitions, shots. They are arranged in in the chronological order in which they will appear in the story.
Things to include in your storyboard:
- Boxes are read left-to-right.
- In each box draw the basic composition. Art is not the key here. Sick figures are fine.
- Key props should be included.
- Indicate camera changes — pan, zoom in/out, focus rack
- Blocking (position and movement of the actors) should be indicated.
- Changes between shots (eg jump cuts, fades) should be indicated if important to the storytelling
- As the story becomes more developed, I find it useful to add notes for music cues, sound effects, and ambient noise.
Since the storyboard is a visual plan for your film, it useful to become familiar with the basic language used in film.
- Understand the different kinds of shorts. Long shot (also called an establishing shot since it lets audiences see the whole scene), medium shot, close up. There are variations in between, but each shot conveys its own king of emotion and action. It is a general rule that when cutting between shots, that you should not have two of the same type in a row
- For every action shot, you should also film a reaction shot.
- Avoid panning like crazy. In a single shot, you should not pan in more than one direction as it can be quite disconcerting to the audience. This is the reason I think Prezi did not catch on. While the idea was interesting, the zoom in/out and all around caused too much distraction.
- Shoot to edit. Fast paced news recording generally shoot shots in sequence. Boy walks up to balloon stand, close of boy’s face looking at the balloons, medium shot of boy paying, close up of money exchanging hands, medium shot of seller handing the balloon to the boy, etc. Unfortunately, this is not always the most efficient way of getting all the shots and duplicates setups. If your have thought through your storyboard, you can plan the shots out of order and edit them together afterwards.
As an example, the gallery below is an early storyboard for a video demonstrating the use of a Minnesota Tube.