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How to Make a Cartoon Storyboard

  • By Joy Davenport
  • Published 04/9/2010
  • Screenplay

Crafting animation that sparks the imagination begins with a perfect storyboard…a visual depiction of your script, characters, and action. Getting the hang of storyboarding for cartoons requires a little forethought and planning, but it is well worth the time and effort. We’ve come up with a useful, quick guide to getting your storyboard polished and making it effective. Once you’ve created a perfect linear map of your artistic vision, you can use your storyboard to interest investors, create a buzz, and serve as a handy template for the finished product. Here is the best way to plan our your cartoon with a professional, engaging storyboard… 1.) Drawings – The frame-by-frame setup of a classic storyboard should mimic that of a newspaper comic strip. Plan out your action and envision drawings that give viewers of your storyboard a sense of your artistic vision. Sometimes, outsourcing or creating drawings can be an expensive and draining prospect – artists are known to bring along a little drama, in the form of missed deadlines…you can avoid this pitfall by choosing to create digital storyboards from today’s hot new software programs. Browse the Web for demos and you’ll see that they provide pre-loaded artwork that makes putting together a cartoon storyboard easy and fun!

2.) Scriptmaking – Getting your drawings in line with your script is important. Make sure you have dialogue mapped out ahead of time. The best animators and directors know that a polished script is the key to great storyboards that capture the imagination. Take the time to refine your vision by typing up a script that focuses on creating a specific tone or mo

od. By using text or dialogue to add impact to your artwork, you can create a storyboard people want to see. 3.) Backgrounds – There is more to animation than characters, speech, and action. Backgrounds offer an easy way to add richness and dimension to your cartoon storyboard. However, creating perfect backgrounds for your storyboard can be very labor-intensive. The best storyboard software will provide ready-made backgrounds you can customize in an instant. User-friendly digital storyboarding software is the wave of the future. Consider using it to get the results you want in a fraction of the time. Another benefit of storyboard software for PC is the way it allows you to play around and experiment. Tiresome hours spent drawing or trying to explain your vision to artists will be replaced by pleasant moments spent tweaking your vision with pre-loaded backgrounds you can make your own! For a look at ways of obtaining software, browse the Net and search for keywords like “storyboard software” or “storyboard artist”. 4.) Music – The best cartoons always feature music that adds drama and interest to the production. Traditional 2-D storyboards don’t always offer the opportunity to add the right music and amp up the mood and effect! However,today’s storyboard software have been designed to make adding the right soundtrack a breeze. The right soundtrack will make your storyboards more professional and they will help your animation crew understand the “feel” you’re going for in your digital storyboard! Be sure to consider music when you put it all together!

We hope you’ve enjoyed this step-by-step breakdown of what is needed to make a great cartoon storyboard. Today’s technology makes it easier than ever to create a workable template for your next production!



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