Tools to Getting Started and References


Storyboarding Your Film


Lesson Info

Tools to Getting Started and References

Tools you think about tools think about a hammer drill stuff like that that's not what we're talking about we're talking about a pencil right? And a piece of paper is really all you need simple like uh you know what's great your favorite post its this is how I learned yeah post its school about a posted like this it's almost like like who knows is the sixteen by that actually was like maybe looks pretty close a bit so if you want the cool thing about this almost like if you write you guys ever write a script right? Something you know how you put like index cards up like maybe this scene will go here maybe it'll go here who knows? Right and james a piece paper again maybe if you keep this up and uh you know you can you know be like here's this guy talking here I'm sorry your mom died right? Because his he's the same he's the friend of the guy whose mom dad and he's talking here you know, whatever he's wearing a cape for some reason and then there's like guy here whose mom died he's cryi...

ng because he said and then you could be like oh, you know what? Maybe it's better if you see the crying the sad crying guy first and then you see the guy talking to him on post it's easy to change around the order right yeah close that you could do watch out you could do both of those guys cape guy here could even combined him he's like hey he's watch shot this guy well boo hoo hoo hoo right here and then there's your wash out your way do we show crying guy first because it's like who emotion you start with a crying guy dramatic and then you reveal oh there's a guy next time he's in er interloping on his private moment and then you go to the wide or do you think maybe it's best to establish the wide first it's show both of us and then maybe you see this guy maybe you maybe you say if this crying moment because you want that to happen at a key line when you know you're like oh that's weird why's that guy or maybe you're here and you're like there's two guys why is this guy crying? Nobody knows until you cut to this guy I'm sorry your mom died then you know it's in history that's been said of them the mom she's like I'm not dead it's just not a bed she comes out of the grave and then you know what you do then you go to crying guy and he's like I'm so happy and you truckin on right because that's the language of film you do this guy right and then then you know what happens cape guy keep guys there's crying but he's crying enjoy because it's such a touching moment that his mom came back to life right and that's storyboarding yeah, you know it's funny I always work on index cards before computers and then when I got remember I got to work I don't know I just never thought opposes opposes they're cheap and you can stick him on anything like that but they really did the officer use them all the time they've all different sizes they have the real little ones will stick in writing the scripts like something like and again this rough later they'll work it out you're working out this thing you could just seriously like sit there and brainstorm this ruling out if the draw you know you don't like it pencil you know state notes really all you need it gets more complicated from there so let's start so we got pencils posted notes if you want right so here's like a piece of paper that's fans here and a posted no use then you could get into these like kind of crazy cool like fancy markers and stuff like these koh pich markers I think they're like I like these better than like the prison of color ones there I don't know why they just seem cooler they got to you got a fat tip and a little kind of like brushing tip but, you know, you could work, you know, you could figure out, you know, draw your panel and then he khun like, rough out guy you know what this like light marker, like, figure out your poses or whatever, you know, areas talking there says, keep again he's gonna keep on, then you're like, ok, well, now I figured out that guy, you go to the, you know, you go to this and, you know, keep guy has a hair cut now, he's talking to other guy and everyone has tools they like to use, like some people like these markers as of late. But I mean, I'm a big I love index cards and posted because I really like to keep it organic and change it around. But I also I mean, I always I always have these little notebooks in my pocket because they're like cheap. You can put in your pocket, you can whip something. How do you think of it like you khun like we were doing? We talk about way we're doing this thing, we're doing this three stooges cartoon I was like I love the three stooges but I was kind of man is gonna be hard like I don't know if it's gonna be funny but like I would just carry this around and like if you see like I would just write I'd be on the subway where I live in new york I think in the subway and I would just like oh I just thought of lunch ideas I just write him down sketch right in here you can see it's like they're hanging from some flagpole but it's it's so messy that it doesn't matter it's just thinking of ideas I mean I like really just simple stuff like a little notebook you could have with you yeah no, it just paints a grim you yeah, I really use that stuff and if you want to get a fancy or drawing you give you should have been with markers you know also, uh important things to have pencil another important thing pencil sharpener because sometimes your pencil needs to be sharpened racer another thing who's perfect are you perfect? No me neither. So race is really good one to have then we'll get into like computers so and there's all sorts of types of tools with the computers are way we talked about that maybe when we get into the professional stuff but there's all sorts of software that we'll get into later on how you can use computers but really you don't need much israel based way getting that soap with software to where it's like some clients will be like what software you're using to do this job and it's like it really doesn't matter it's about the person is about the artist I was used the comparison of like, what are your your writers writing the script in the final draft or microsoft word because of the funnier if they write it in like yourself word that is a lie, it won't be any funnier unless the writers funny here, it's really the hardest thing is like doing the work I mean, the hardest thing is like every day putting in time and making stuff I mean, for me, like, get up every day like, I don't know, you know, you want to make stuff all the time, but then you're like, you know, you want to be creative and do this stuff for a living or for fun or whatever you got to put in time, but that so I just like real simple small stuff that you could always have in your bag or in your pocket and because I like I like the storyboard, I really like to store ward and coffee shops and bars like I like a really active environment some sometimes I like a real quiet thing like my room, but sometimes especially the beginning I'm trying to filter ideas it's like I like it because sometimes you know you'll sit there for a while you won't have any idea just doodling maybe people watching or trying to get an idea and it will come to you and then you might it might all just come out like crazy and stuff like this you could have it anywhere you know it's not going to make a case and you don't need to be like a man my my laptop is about to die and there's no police to plug it in yeah you don't need to plug in the notebook or a post it note right? Good tools for storyboarding and I think another thing is what you were saying about a little bit off topic for tools but you gotta love you know what I'm about to say it's all time is uh you love to do it if you find yourself like it's a grind you don't want to do your story boards I mean occasionally you're gonna have a day like that, but if you're like find yourself forcing to do it probably not the job for you you know you want to be ableto want to drawing tell these stories every day because it takes a lot of time and you have to be, you know, engaged in it it's like do I want to spend ten hours a day? He drawn little storyboard pictures every day then yes, this is a job for you if you're like, that sounds hard then probably not the tools of funny too, because I know when I started to project I got all excited when I buy a new pack index cards and stuff because I have like colored ones now and what you can do is what I do is I buy a big piece of foam core and sometimes I write I don't even drawing a lot more, but I'll write that stuff like, ok, the main guys having an argument with the boss but you have another scene with, like sheila, his girlfriend in the apartment but you can use a different colored card or or put a little sticker different marker and when you're putting up your people to this lot for scripts like you can see if you're spending too much time with one character or group that another if you want to even it out more and helps you see the story really quick, I think even like you know when you're storyboarding out sequence like let's say you have a specific dialogue sequence you're trying to work it out, but you know, like I do this all the time too I'll just write on a panel like uh, let's say it's a scene that takes place in new york city you want establishes like uh three five cool shots in new york city and then you work that out later when you have time to like come up with cool compositions and stuff you know you don't need to draw every shot and if you're shooting live actually prattle ever need to drill it you know there's walk around new york city with a camera and be like, whoa that's a cool shot I'll shoot that that will establish it right it's funny to lapse or something you know, one of the sound of music because there's like two sides of it because there there is a technical side where you want like a sick board artist that could really do a crazy angler like they have really creative cool way of thinking but there's the other side that comes first where you're it's almost like writing were you really trying to bang it out and just get ideas out? And then you know they're both really important, but they're there if it's funny how that I think in this in this for the purposes of this thing we're talking mostly about people who want to get their visions onto the screen right? Because there's a there's a part where it's like the very technical side of story boy in which you know is good for you know if you want to get a job is like a black has sitting at a desk doing storyboards and there's a riel skilled of that? Like you remember with motor city, you know, with the jamie vickers is so dynamic. And, uh, I was like, man, I got to figure out a way to make these guys playing a video game. He's using a video game controller. Birds gotta feel cool and it's got to feel like it's an action sequence. So, like, you figure out a cool way to make him, like, push the buttons on the thing and he did this thing where when he pushed the buttons like this video game control, like, stretched out, the camera went up and over it. And I was like, man that's so good I would have never thought of that. So that's part of that collaborative part, too. Yeah, all right. We probably got a little off topic from two lt's tools. You know, what's. A great test tools for a greater and awesome storyboard darkness has great ideas. That's a great tool, what's your personal preference. He has find yourself gravitating towards, like pencil on paper or computer. Over. I like both are going to say that there's places for both if I'm in a meeting. With somebody absolutely pencil on paper, like I love to have just pete scraps of paper to draw, and you can pass the paper back and forth and draw on each other's things like like, just like now, when I was, you know, this guy's condolence and chris he's, like, I'm not dead like that's, actually, how it works, like when you're sitting there with your board artist, you're jamming on ideas and it's ways here to do this that's, like, let me sit down at your computer and it's like, what? How are your key command set up? I'm going to change them to the way that I like him and then it's like, what was that idea had I forgot about it already? So I think for, like, the rough stage pencil on paper and like you're saying with the notebook? Well, it's it's funny because we were talking about, too, is the collaboration part when you're when you're writing and storyboard his story morning is writing, because when you're doing this show, like a kid's show, a very visual show, like a show, like a sponge, bob, or even showing super jail like when you're you know, when I have a meeting, I'll have a meeting with my board, guys, well. We'll have the script already it will be like this is what it says what can we make it funnier? There's no other place to add more gags in here when we're kicking around the idea it's like chris is saying we're sitting there, but if I was in a computer and they're just sitting there I'm dictating and they're just sitting there but when well, usually go in the conference room and we'll all make you don't draw you guys like, well, all draw like this and if so, just like this like sort of like what if this happens and that's funny, can we work it in somehow like that? So you get the funny always the funniest jokes or when you're trying to make the other people you work with laugh, I find it's never when you're alone like this funniest idea going hard when you're right in front of someone, you can kind of start joking and riffing and this leads to this leads to this and that's a really important thing, especially no even if you're making whatever you're boarding you know, a lot of people might be of storyboarding their own personal film but show your friends or show your classmates or your peers you want to show them that stuff because even I find and don't show your mom or somebody who's just going to say it's awesome no matter what she'll critical people, we're gonna rip it apart until I tell you it sucks you wanted to change what you wantto like, because I'll be unless your mom's really mean and we'll tell you that it sucks the most people's moms are nice because when you sometimes you'll find when you were explaining the idea you've had for, like, save that for, like a month, but when you're explaining it in front of someone, you're almost because you're trying to sell it. You you almost amp it up more get funnier forces units it's weird to really work it out when you're pitching your gag to somebody else that wasn't even for live action, I think it's like so you're shooting uh, scene with people sitting at a kitchen table in its dialogue, and so far, it maybe not as important to really work out every shot, but if you're shooting like an action sequence and you're jamming with somebody and you need to prepare it for the set it's like if you come up with the gags, what if he pulls out a baseball bat from behind the thing and box the monster on the head, then your prop you need you need to have a baseball bat on set or else you that's that's really a good purpose for like boarding ahead of time for live actions and you know if you come up with stuff that's not in the script and even animation like it's funny I remember one of the funniest things I remember was I got him to me it's like like the prop designer because in the board someone has to have a bad somebody later is gonna have to design the bat because later the idea and the board sure yeah another maybe that's too tell you what I think that's interesting stuff yeah I was laser heat like somebody's design that or stapler where's a pencil yeah that's always example I use everything that somebody get a pencil pencil well they got me e that's the thing you gotta have seven different animators and they're going to draw seven different pencils unless there's utensil design right reference materials is what we're going on to now so there's a lot of books on storyboarding I find most of them to be full of a lot of fat that you don't need people feel like they have to fill up a book with things I think the best uh you have the internet you guys got the internet yeah it's great you probably as an audience we were watching this on the internet so he's a search like like storyboard how the storyboard and stuff like that there's all this cool stuff like you were talking about brad bird stuff from the simpsons great stuff online like the yeah there's brad bird does big stuff now he's doing what mission impossible pixar movies and all that but he has to work on simpson's and he used to be a star I think a storyboard surprise or director and there's this pdf online if you just look up it's like brad bird's guy and the simpsons and I mean I saw that like fifteen years ago or something I mean it's been around for a while it's like better than any class or book and I'm pretty seriously I've been doing this for probably I mean, I'm like like forty now but I remember I just saw this I think a year or two ago and I was like, oh my god, this is like, so good like yeah, all this and it's basically like it is written real joking like, don't do this do this we'll simply and you're like yeah makes sense when you uh yeah see it yeah it's good it's good good information I think it's out there to be had and I got to see the best way to get good at storyboarding and it's kind of tedious but it's it's like so useful and it makes you understand and appreciate filmmaking so much is get a movie that you like get movie that you think is something that is in the direction you want ahead and you know either on netflix or you know whatever quicktime movie or even a dvd just go through a shot by shot posit and draw it shot by shot and then you really learn how many shots were in a scene you know how a scene is constructed, how many times they're cutting back to the same set up sounds anal but when you when you're really trying to understand something like and again it's I always tell people it's like there's all these books and all that but the best thing is whatever your favorite stuff is the stuff you want to make stuff like is watch that stuff and like really analyze it and really study it because you know it but when you do that, you really really know it then you know it sounds corny, but you'll be like, oh, now I see this leading really see it before but I knew I liked you and you look you know, you you look like, you know, like a like a tony scott or something like that and it's like so many cuts you're like this guy doesn't hang on a shot for like more than one second and then you look at like a his cocker spielberg or something you're like they're hanging on this shot for like a minute it's crazy, you know, so like that it really you when you're really drawing this stuff here like well, you get it, you see see how it works because you know it's like, you know it's time to say you want to think about time when you're storyboarding because it's like you know you're not what people are going to absorb this as a linear thing that they're watching, you're not going to it's not like a comic or something. So you know, I think about how long is this shot? A cz well that's a that's the thing that the reference can help you were some stuff too is like the a lot of stuff now a lot of the dvds on the extras might have there's a there's a taxi driver thing where they have to have the storyboards thiss end scene where he kind of don't ruin it but he had no spoilers thiss seen through here and blows away on people but it's the storyboards are just it's so funny because they have it this time my side by side it's it's sticks big screens like it's like a circle and lines but when you see it you're like he totally was imagining this when he boarded this and reads and even stuff to a lot of those even like a like a you know again it's live action and animation but there's a lot of different kinds of animation one of these while those pixar movies they'll have like a two d and a matic board of a really crazy through anything that's like the best thing you can studies and that information is out there so easy together that's online now yeah, I wouldn't waste your time with like the how to storyboard books there's a couple of go home don blue thrones ok there's like that I think like maybe it's like directing for film or something that's pretty good sure there's some that are good but it's like how to write a book like this to write read a couple of you know look up reviews to like what are the essential ones but a lot of it's just getting in there and doing it and studying this stuff you love one of the films that you guys find yourself going back tio toe like storyboard do you still do that ever toe like you? Probably and our short warning to my own advice you know, I was I was doing it recently, you know, uh some directing this movie now that's like it's like an independent, you know, it's pretty cool because it's not a big studio recently got a lot of freedom on how to direct it when boarding and I've been like I wanted to be really the composition to be really pretty because it doesn't have a huge budget to like do it super fancy so I've been looking at like wes anderson stuff lack is that jack focuses so much on composition like every composition is really beautiful so that's one what about you? I mean it's the same thing it's like usually it depends on what I'm doing a new project right now it's funny you say that because one of the funny things is in that thing we were talking about before where it says you don't do it like this do it like this my stuff tends to be very flat and symmetrical and straight on and a lot of the stuff I do is a don't but it's a stylistic choice that I know the rules and I get that it is but I've been trying to branch out a little more dynamic and stuff so I've actually been doing what he said before I've been watching a lot of things with really crazy dynamic and like a lot of I mean it's funny a lot of anime actually um this is for a cartoon you know, animated project but and just freeze framing it and just studying the shots and just just really looking at because again when you a lot of this stuff to it so fast the cuts are so fast that it's hard for your brain for to sink in and I really want to understand like, you know, you know, nuts and bolts of it yeah also lot of me like looking a lot at miyazaki by the enemy stuff they'll have a whole books it's just the whole storyboard and lot of miyazaki stuff I've been looking at the boards air so tight it's just crazy in the er I remember one you know, like early on uh looking at really analyzing jurassic park is it's like such is so like well told that story and just simple things like there's a scene get exactly where it is I think it's like, you know, I think it might involve them seeing and dinosaur and it's like the shots of like the dude in the two kids and like it's the same like kind of like like like kind of pan up shot on like three people in a row where they kind of crest this thing and they're moving up in the shot moves up and then it cuts and they do the same move like three times in a row and it kind of builds the intensity of the scene like this kind of like wonder like what the hell are they seeing and it's like it's something you perceived but when you really look at these things and you're like, oh, well, if you boarded that it would look like this you'd have to do these three little pens and I never think that board something like that do three if the exact same camera move in a row on three close up shots but it was so effective and you know it's like yeah we learned, you know, learn stuff from watching fancy pants I feel like that again this might be when we grew up but like stuff like I remember I remember even as a kid though like like indiana jones the actions so choreographed and they they boarded all that they have they have that stuff I think in books and on grand any of those actions sequences there's a really detailed board that again it's not animation but it's very specific as I think they want to really nail down what they wanted for the effects and for that had to be clear, you know, when there is a lot more practical effects you had to plan way more when you couldn't shoot as much footage you had to plan more, you know, it's like, you know used to be when you had a low budget film it's like, well, this is how much film we can't afford to by and that's what we're going to shoot our rate, you know, there's a lot of talk about shooting ratio now it's kind of like hey man, how much hard drive space is actually as much as you want it you don't have to planets much but there's still something to be said about planning and you know, storyboarding is a big part of the planning is not getting their noodle or I mean it's great to experiment get inspired, but you don't go in there not knowing what you're doing please much of time yeah, like I was looking at some of the behind the scenes on that under the skin and even though that's like an experimental movie that might seem like really like weirdo and like anti storytelling like they had a super plan that especially for the effects stuff things like really, really had to do a lot of like planning up front, it doesn't have to be a conventional movie to planet or storyboard it you remember seeing to remember when avengers came out, someone had posted a bunch of the anna matics of the boards for that and again a lot just just you know, whatever you're into look it up like it could be a horror mainstream or what it's a lot of online now people's blog's, it's, there's like actually more reference now than ever I feel like yeah, totally because you got all the old stuff that existed in books and I have people I mean, people put stuff on their personal blog's all the time in the studio seemed a little bit cooler these days and networks of like, hey wants it airs like opening a tumbler to weigh this fourth season super jail like we were going a tumbler for the first time and there's so much stuff and its international to it's kind of crazy like it was crazy we're finding art like who are these people in a really good stuff and they were having even gifts of a sequence yeah there's this show space space dandies based and cowboy guy in space or something there on and there's these sequences where it's like it's a gift of like a really crazy thing but it's over and over when you're watching it you're like this is I'm crazy like I'm seeing new stuff each time and I think that you know uh you know used to be like ok you're looking for reference you got books on like hollywood big hollywood films or you could go to the library and maybe look up a book on film linking now you know the world has got someone smaller you can look at all this like french artists or japanese rbis and things there's a lot to be learned I think there's a lot more crossover it used to be like you know my first time I went to japan was like in the late nineties it seems so far in and weird and now it's like everything you kind of I've seen that before on the internet if you know there is like it's kind of cool your everyone is exposed to mohr

Class Description

An inability to draw doesn't make storyboarding obsolete – no matter how simplistic and basic your stick figures are, you can still use storyboards as a guiding blueprint for your production. In Storyboarding Your Film, Chris Prynoski will show you how to develop simple, effective storyboards which allow you to tackle all kinds of filmmaking challenges.

Chris has used storyboards to develop his best-known works including, Metalocalypse, Freaknik: The Musical, and Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja. In this class, he’ll teach you how to use the basic tool of storyboarding to deconstruct a scene or sequence and how to implement the storyboard as a useful aid for both camera and crew. You’ll learn:

  • Which projects to storyboard
  • Alternative uses and mediums for storyboarding
  • Optimal tools and instruments for storyboard creation
  • How storyboards serve filmmakers

Chris and special-guest instructor, Christy Karacas (director of Adult Swim's Superjail!) will share both original and pre-existing storyboard examples to help ensure your own boards advance your project and act as a useful guide for other key collaborators. You’ll learn simple approaches that will make the creation of storyboards less intimidating and more inspiring.

If you are ready to incorporate more advanced techniques into your filmmaking, Storyboarding Your Film with Chris Prynoski will guarantee your next project is more polished, prepared, and cinematic.