Join Stacey Williams-Ng for an in-depth discussion in this video Storytelling in a visual profession, part of Storytelling for Designers.
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Why would a visual thinker be interested in storytelling? After all, many of us designers tend to think that if we communicate in pictures we're already doing something that trumps storytelling. We're showing, not telling, right? Well not necessarily. We still have to do a good job at both. Because the combination of images and words is the most powerful method of communicating. The best designers are storytelling with design. Let's begin by talking about what stories are. Why do we tend to fill in stories when we see images that send us visual queues for intrigue and conflict, and drama? It's because stories are important to how we as humans understand the world around us.
They are units of measurement for how we communicate with one another. We were raised on them. Let's define what a story is. A story is something that happens to someone and then how they respond. It's not just a series of facts. If human beings were truly captivated just by facts, then we'd all sit outside and watch the cars roll by instead of consuming the plot-driven stories we find in movies, TV and books. But as a designer you're going to be mostly telling stories with pictures, and colors, and shapes and maybe even a few words too.
As a designer or a visual thinker, you need to know how to capture your viewer's interest in the most effective way possible. And the answer to that problem is always this, capture their curiosity. And brain research shows us nothing captures our curiosity more than the question, what happens next? They say a story has a beginning, a middle and an end. We learned this in high school. But for our purposes as designers, we may not have room in a layout for beginnings, middles and ends. This course is designed to give you a deeper knowledge of effective storytelling techniques.
And then adapt those lessons for use in graphic design. Illustration or even photography. If you're not looking to use and adapt these lessons for use in a visual profession, but rather are looking for a deeper dive into storytelling itself. I'd recommend Lisa Cron's here on lynda.com called Writing Fundamentals: The Craft of Story. It's an excellent in-depth study by a professional author and editor designed to advise fellow writers on how to craft long format manuscripts. But for no we're going to adapt lessons like those from writers and other master storytellers. To give our graphic design solutions more impact through story.
- Connecting with your audience
- Defining the structure (and protagonist) of your story
- Tools of the trade: symbolism, color, icons, typography, and more
- Using personas
- Creating a brief for your story