More Story Boarding!

Story boardI’m making progress on the story board for The Magic Fairy Party Makers. In fact, it’s surprising how much I have accomplished in just one week! That may be due to a new tool I am trying in the process….tracing paper! Okay, so tracing paper is not “new” but it is something I have not used before. I read an interview on line with one of my favorite children’s book illustrators, Melissa Sweet, who mentioned that she draws her storyboard sketches on tracing paper. I thought… Why? Since I couldn’t exactly ask her, I decided to just try it myself. The main difference I discovered using tracing paper versus opaque drawing paper, is greater flexibility with redrawing ideas. In other words, I don’t have to start from scratch every time I want to try something different for one box of the story board. This is a big time saver.

Storyboard sketch stepsIf you are interested, this is a photo of my process for creating a sketch for the storyboard. I start with a very rough, small, thumbnail sketch of my initial idea. Okay, that might work. Then I make a pencil sketch of that in the size of the box, (in this example it is two boxes) being sure to save space for the text that will go on that page. Then I trace the parts I like, using a black pen. I can then move the trace around in the box trying different locations for the image or the text, and maybe add or subtract something to make it better. This can sometimes come together quickly (as in this example) or take a few more sketches.  When I am satisfied that the tracing paper sketch works with the text, it is taped in place on the entire story board that is up on the fridge. Now I can see how this box fits with the rest of the developing parts on the story board. All of these parts can be moved or changed at any point. Storyboarding is kind of like a making a map and a solving puzzle at the same time. You have to find your way as you go along and it is never really finished until the very end.

3 thoughts on “More Story Boarding!

  1. Tracing paper is a time saver as well when you are totally satisfied with your drawing. You can then trace your final rendering with a softer pencil on the back of it, flip it over on your chosen support and trace your drawing without having to draw it again and risking to have to erase errors and damage the surface. You probably know all about it by now, but as you mentioned tracing paper being a new tool, I thought I would share my experience with it. If you have to erase something anyway it also works better with a very soft black pencil than by using the art carbon sheets available from art supplies stores. They don’t erase as well as the soft black pencils. Solange

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