Storyboard

The storyboard for my sequence is going to be a really important part of the whole process. ‘Storyboards are a key part of visual storytelling – they can help you visualize your idea, help you explain it to a client, and plan a creative project’ (Boicheva, 2020). At first, I did struggle to find a way to translate the ideas that I had in my head for my sequence onto a planned and ordered storyboard, as I had lots of ideas for possible shots but they weren’t necessarily in a particular order. By drawing all of the shot ideas onto Procreate on my iPad, I was then able to arrange them and use this to help me decide what order they should be shown in on my sequence.

My final storyboard

From doing some research into existing storyboards to help me, I found that the most important things to include in a storyboard would be the basic illustration or graphic of the shot to help visualise how it will look. It’s also important to include a short description of the shot, and to write down the camera angles or styles ready for doing the actual filming. And, as this project is focused on visual effects, I also ensured to include what visual effects I would like in each shot. Usually in storyboards, it is also possible to include a brief description of any dialogue in the shots, however, my storyboard won’t have any dialogue, it will just have an instrumental and possibly some other audio sound effects which aren’t yet decided so I didn’t include this part in my storyboard.

As my sequence is going to be about 60 seconds long, this will make each of my shots be on average about 6.6 seconds long, although, I will most likely make some shots more or less than this number depending on the situation. Generally, horror shots in films will last an average of 16 seconds compared to action film shots which would be an average of 4 seconds. I feel like mine being around 6.6 seconds should be acceptable, but to help add to more atmosphere in my opening sequence, I will probably try to make some longer, but I will most likely alter the timings of the shots during post-production.

In terms of the types of shots and camera angles, I did have a go using the ‘Shot Designer’ app for some of my shots to try and help me get a better understanding of the positioning of everything when it comes to shooting. Here, I was able to add the objects that would be in frame and then add the camera and if the camera would be moving in that shot, you can create a camera pathway to represent this. I did find using this app useful to help me visualise everything better. 

Shot 1 screenshot 

I felt that this one didn’t work as well because the app wouldn’t allow me to alter the angle of the camera, and in this scene I will require the camera to be facing down.

Shot 2 screenshot

It was much easier to translate what I had envisaged for this shot onto the app, this plan looks much clearer and is easier to understand that the camera will be focusing towards the trees and will be moving from location 1 to 2.

Shot 3 screenshot

Shot 3 seemed to work out well too, it shows that the camera will be panning from location 1 to 2 (left the right).

Overall, I have attempted to do a variety of different shot types throughout my storyboard to hopefully try and make my final sequence be as visually appealing as possible. I have tried to include types of shots and camera angles which would be suited for the horror genre, for example, in the first shot it will be a close up of the main characters shoes walking along to the path towards the forest. Having this as an opening scene will hopefully intrigue the viewer and I will be able to focus on the sound of footsteps, to match the footage and this should hopefully add to the creepy feeling I aim to go for and therefore set the tone for the rest of the opening sequence. In shot 4, I have chosen to do a low angle shot looking up at the trees, I was hoping that this would almost come across as quite intimidating to the viewer. Low angle shots are often used in horror films as they ‘can really help to jolt the audience into the headspace of the characters’ (Kroll, 2015). 

References:

Boicheva, A (2020) What is a storyboard [theory, examples and mega inspiration]. Available online: https://graphicmama.com/blog/what-is-a-storyboard/ [Accessed 25/10/21].

Average shots information found at:

Stephen Follows (2017) How many shots are in the average movie? Available online: https://stephenfollows.com/many-shots-average-movie/ [Accessed 25/10/21].

Kroll, N (2015) Cinematography tips for horror filmmakers. Available online: https://www.premiumbeat.com/blog/cinematography-tips-for-horror-filmmakers/ [Accessed 26/10/21].

Screenshots taken from the app ‘Shot Designer’

Hollywood Camera Work LLC (2021) Shot Designer [App]. Available online: https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/shot-designer/id556342711 [Accessed 25/10/21].

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