I couldn’t help it, I’m Canadian.
This is an introductory post I’ll expand on in the ‘Production Journal‘ and ‘Storyboard Like a Pro‘. If you want to do storyboards for a living and have no idea what it takes, I’ll break it down for you. No sugar-coating…you deserve that. Here we go:
Do you have to know how to draw? Yes. How good? Pretty darn good. Do you have to be drop dead amazing? No. I’m nowhere near amazing, but I’m pretty good and get the job done. As I’ve said before, the drawings aren’t the most important thing in a board. But to work professionally, you need good solid drawing skills. And hey…amazing can’t hurt.
Do you need formal training to be able to work professionally? I’d like to say ‘no’, because anything is possible, but I’d be more inclined to say ‘yes, you do’. Any kind of formal art training is great to grow as an artist. Take classes in drawing, painting or life drawing if that’s what you love. Will that alone make you a storyboard artist? Nope. If you want to work in the animation, film or gaming field, you need some training in that field. You can’t produce storyboards for an industry if you don’t know how that industry works. You must know how a cartoon is produced or a film is shot in order to storyboard for a production effectively. Even if that training is reading everything you can gets your hands on…you need it. It’s expected.