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Whatever kind of video you are making a good storyboard can make sure that everyone is on the same page. A storyboard clearly shows the final sequence of a video allowing directors to plan shots and stakeholders to agree.

Why storyboards matter?

You have an idea for a video and you have written a script. What next? We would always recommend a storyboard (of sorts). Video is a creative medium and whether you’re creating a 10 – 30 second advert or a longer piece of content (whether promotional or narrative or both) a storyboard allows everyone involved to be on the same page.

Production can be one of the most expensive parts of making a video so it is essential to be as efficient as possible whilst the camera is rolling. A storyboard clearly shows what shots are needed in a way that everyone involved can agree on.

The different types of storyboard

Here at Smarter Video there are three types of storyboard that we use based on the requirements of a project.

Visual description

The most common type of storyboard we us is a visually descriptive script. Rather than just focus on the lines or text each shot is described carefully to give a clear indication of what is happening visually on screen at any given moment.

We find that for many projects that involve a lot of talking heads: like case studies, Vox pops, or event videos this type of script best clarifies how ti is going to look. Often when working on more corporate videos it is impossible to plan the finer detail of what things are going to look like: a location can’t always be scouted, it is impossible to fully script out how an interview or event will go. A visual description allows the narrative, ideas and feeling of video come across without limiting what will need to be flexible shoots.

Standard comic strip

For more narrative based videos a comic strip type panel storyboard is best. It clearly shows each shot and allows the director to demonstrate his intention to all parties. For animations these are also particularly useful as they clearly showcase the intended style for the final look and final.

The storyboards can also be turned into an animatic. This uses still images from the storyboard (sometimes with limited animations) against music and recorded dialogue (not usually the final recording). Animatics give a sense of timing, emotion and how all the elements comes together without incurring some of the higher costs of fully animating or filming.


Pre-visualisation uses computers and 3d modelling to create a basic animation that acts out the camera movements and action to allow complex sequences to be fully planned out. These are often used in larger budget projects where a series of shots needs to be planned for carefully to ensure something will work or play out properly when everything is put together.

This is the most expensive method of storyboarding but is the most detailed and comes closest to representing the end product.

Smarter Video

Here at Smarter Video we work hard to ensure we have all the right techniques at our disposal so we can use the best ones to achieve your goals.

For more information about Smarter Video take a look here.

Please get in touch and let me know what you would like to learn or read about.

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