Sunday, February 20, 2011

Storyboards: The Man Who Shot liberty Valance, part 6

I've not taught studio for a while, and so have neglected this blog. As I have a backlog of material and hope to have more soon, it seems a good time to pick it up again. My apologies to the faithful readers. I will make amends for my absence, starting now!
Here's the next frame of the Liberty Valance storyboards.
Again the definition of the shot as "over the shoulder" is a bit vague. Looking at the depth of field, I'd be tempted to just go "long shot" on this one. It's a fairly static camera.
What's noteworthy here are the stage directions. The doctor throws the chip and it bounces on the table. This is clear both in the caption and in the image.
Once again, I love the tones of those French gray markers!
Working backwards affords a luxury that a storyboard artist doesn't have in a real-world environment. It's not your job to block out all character and camera motion, though understanding these things is crucial.
It's your job as a storyboard artist to apply images to the words of the script. That's it.
But to really know how to do that, you must understand both the theory and practice of filmmaking. This is problematic. The language used on a shoot is often quite different than that used in classes. And all these languages evolve over time.
So which language do you use? You use the one that best suits the needs of the director with whom you are working.
Terry Gilliam often does his own boards. On Brazil, his boards were little more than thumbnails. But as he is the director and he knows what he means, that's sufficient.

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