March 6, 2015
Teaching storyboarding from Roadrunner cartoons
• Watch a Roadrunner cartoon. Of course, they're funny, even to people who have never seen them before. And I would start the process of changing the people in the class from a passive audience, just laughing, to animators who could create that thing of thing for themselves.
• Try to remember what you just saw. The vast majority of my students, at least in the beginning, had no idea. Their answers were generalized - the coyote chased the roadrunner, things blew up. And then I would ask them to watch it again, and this time take notes.
• Sketch out the visual story. Remember that the roadrunner cartoons always had a series of interesting stories, but never a word. There were a lot of limitations which had to be accommodated, especially the fact that there was no way to tell the story except visually.
Once you understand how to tell a story visually, the rest is detail. The actual animation, the colors, the number of clouds in the sky. And if you can be a visual storyteller, you can do more than make cartoons, you can make movies. Welcome to the world of movie-making!
Posted by Brad Hall