What is a Storyboard Artist?
A storyboard artist creates visuals for each major scene in a film or TV show. Visuals will include character poses, facial expressions, and backgrounds.
What Is The Job?
The roles of a storyboard artist can differ from job to job. In some cases, the storyboard artist gets a script and has to create a storyboard based on that script, whereas in other cases, the storyboard artist also acts as the writer of the episode. In many cases, storyboard artists are responsible for ‘pitching’ their ideas to the director of a film. It’s one of the few art jobs in animation that can influence the final product.
The storyboard artist has to visualise everything, specifically from the camera’s point of view – from gestures to emotion, and based on preference, a storyboard artist can visualise the scenes by hand, or visualise them using software such as Photoshop or Storyboard Pro.
The illustrations that the storyboard artist creates have two functions: to help directors clarify what they want to achieve, and to illustrate to other members of the team exactly what is required (e.g. props, makeup, computer generated images).
- Experience of software such as Photoshop or Storyboard Pro.
- Ability to understand characters personalities
- Flexibility and ability to adapt between styles of different films/shows
- Very good drawing skills
Salary & Working Hours
Junior Storyboard Artists can expect to earn an average of £18,000 a year when starting oout, whilst experienced storyboard artists can expect to earn around £30,000 to £40,000 a year.
As with most jobs in the film industry, you will often work under pressure as the turnaround for storyboards can be fast. Therefore, working hours can be long and irregular with weekend work to reach deadlines.
How to Become a Storyboard Artist
An undergraduate degree, preferably in animation, graphic design, fine arts, or a related area of study will be a good starting point for becoming a Storyboard Artist.
Internships are also a great way to get hands on experience and they will also provide you with the opportunity to start creating your own work. Most employees require potential candidates to have at least one year of experience in the field. Once you’ve built up some experience and had a go at creating some work, it’s wise to put together a portfolio of the panels that really showcase what you can do. This can show potential employees what you’re capable of.
Where Can It Take You?
The job of a storyboard artist is a very creative job, and therefore it’ll provide you with a good amount of experience to go into other animation jobs. You’ll be learning about the language of film, staging, and how to create dialogue for characters. All this leads to a better understanding of various aspects of film and television production, which will help when collaborating with directors. For most storyboard artists, the general career progression is from Storyboard Artist to Storyboard Supervisor, and then possibly to Director.
Become a Storyboard Artist Today
If you are ready for the next step in your career, why not take a look at the latest Storyboard Artist vacancies on our jobs board? You can view our latest vacancies here.