As you start your process, your visual creativity comes into play. As a filmmaker, you've seen numerous movies and probably realize that there is no ONE right way to show the story just as there is no ONE right way to tell a story. So there are no hard and fast rules, but there are some basic principals (beyond formatting) that have been used for years. Yet one important goal is to show the story or concept so it is clear to the audience.
(Who is your storyboard audience?).
To start a storyboard project, take your script and go thru it scene by scene. As you work thru each scene, decide what elements you need in each scene (sequence of shots) to visually tell the story that your script's text describes. Make note in the caption area for yourself (if you're directing) or add the scene slug-line.
How to begin to show a scene: One straight-forward way to start is to compose a wide shot or establishing shot (to show your audience "where," "when", "what" and "who"), then move in closer (MS) with each sequential shot (CU). This is a simple formula that you can use to begin to visually lay out your storyboards. While lengthy or complex action or fight scenes possibly requiring multiple frames to communicate ideas.
- Which characters are in the frame.
- How are they moving? (use arrows to show character movement)
- What are the characters saying to each other, if anything? (use the caption area to add key dialog)
- How much time has passed between the last frame of the storyboard and the current one?
- How close or far away are the elements? This will indicate the camera placement for the cinematographer.
But how to start?