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What is Storyboard Artist

What is Storyboard Artist

What is storyboard artist?

A storyboard artist is a person who creates art of sketches, scenes, dialogue etc for the creation of a story for videos(T.V, movies, animations). The artist creates visuals for each major scene in the story including character’s poses, facial expressions, and backgrounds. Storyboarding is a major career for those who are interested in art, directing, and storytelling. As a storyboard artists can be used in any digital product including video games. Many games have cutscenes or repeat character movements that need to be visualized throughout  boards. Storyboarding art became famous because of cartoon visuals, animation, comic books and today it is an emerging platform for individuals to showcase their talent.    

What does the storyboard artist do?

Storyboard Artists help in creating a visual representation of the animation’s narrative. Storyboard artists translate the scripts and the maker’s/producer’s vision into pictures or sketches. They tend to produce a series of panels of images to plan the shots and ensure continuity between them. Thus, all this creation forms the basis for the animation or movie in the next stage of production. Each storyboard is made up of panels and the storyboard artists tend to create those panels in such a way that it feels effective and attractive to the viewer at the same time it captures the characters emotions and storylines. In some cases the storyboard artist gets a script and has to draw the story as-scripted. But many times, especially in TV animation, the storyboard artist is also the writer of the episode. The artist can individually visualize dialogs to add a vision to the story. 

What should a storyboard artist be good at?

 A storyboard artist should be good at the following jobs in order to be a professional storyboard artist:

  • Sketches and Drawings :- A storyboard artist must be really good at sketching and drawing. Storyboarding is all about creativity which requires skills of an artist to create and generate new ideas for the production to make it more effective. 
  • Emotional connect – An artist should draw something that connects with the audience. Emotions of a character’s feelings, scenes should have an impact on the audience in order to gain more attention toward the production or video. 
  • Storytelling skills – A storyboarding artist must know how to create a story or how to make a story effective in order to fit it in the criteria of a good animation, movie or book that grabs people towards it and at the same time leaves an impact. 

What is the purpose of storyboard artist? 

When a video is in the process of forming a digital platform for example – movies, animations, videos they need a roadmap to work with and storyboard artist is the one which helps in  graphic representations of creating such digital tasks so that they can be easily performed with less working cost being included. They create a pre vision to define future planning and formation of a video.

When someone is trying to make a video he is setting up a plan for production, including all the shots that they will need.  Artists also help in eliminating multiple revisions and help in saving time and money. It may take a long period of time in creating a storyboard but in the end you will get to know how beneficial it is to have a storyboard artist who will create a predefined roadmap for your purpose of creating a digital production.

What does a storyboard artist work with? 

A storyboard artist is the one who works with the directors, scriptwriters, and storytellers in a wide range of industries in the production of films, games, animation, T.V Ad, etc. Most of the time storyboard artists have to work alone as they spend most of the time drawing or sketching the storyboard in papers or on computers. For story making they need a space to create a story in their mind and represent it in the sheet. Sometimes it is hard for storyboard artists to create a story because storyboarding is hard work as it is a creative work, which needs the time and effort of the artist. 

Types of storyboard artist? 

Their are majorly 3 main types of storyboard artists;

  1. Traditional storyboards Artist  – 

These artists create conceptual pencil sketches which are hand drawn, which is the most traditional form of storyboarding, that provides an idea to write about the visuals after which the final filming is proceed. This type of storyboard artists mainly work for animations,T.V and movies that allows necessary changes to be made in case something is improper.

  1. Thumbnail storyboard Artist  –  

These artists create quick sketches which are the first step of storyboarding and are not bigger than your thumbnail. That’s why these are called thumbnail storyboard artists. Mostly they create tiny stick finger drawings or small images and sketches serving as a guide for a large image.

  1. Digital storyboard Artist  – 

These are storyboard artists, who create drawings in digital softwares. The images are also created with the help of these softwares. In simple words these are the Traditional storyboard artists but also know how to operate a software rather than just creativity of pencil and paper.

Who is the best storyboard artist?

Here are top 3 storyboard artists whose work and story inspires every individual artist today:

  1. Glen Kean 

Glen Kean is an American animator, author and illustrator. He was a character animator at Walt Disney Animation for feature films including “The little Mermaid”, “Beauty and the Beast”, “Aladdin”, “Pocahontas”, “Tarzan” and “Tangled”. He received the 1992 Annie Award for character animation and the 2007 Winsor McCay Award for the lifetime contribution to the field of animation. He was named a Disney Legend in the year 2013.  

  1. Chris Sanders

Chris Sanders also known as Christopher Michael Sanders is an American director, screenwriter, producer, illustrator, and voice actor. His works includes, “Lilo & Stitch” and “How to Train Your Dragon”, both of which he co-wrote and co-directed with Dean DeBlois, The Croods with Krick DeMicco and The Call of the Wall. he is also known for creating the story behind Lilo 7 Stitch and for creating and voicing its characters in the film and its franchises.

  1. Brenda Chapman 

Brenda Chapman is an American animator, screenwriter, storyboard artist, and director. In the year 1998, she became the first woman to direct an animated feature from a major studio, Dreamwork Animation’s The Princess of Egypt. In the year 2012, she co-directed the Disney/Pixar film “Brave” with Mark Andrews and Steve Purcell, becoming the first woman to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. 

List of female storyboard artist 

Here are some well known female storyboard artists:

  1. Bianca Majolie –

Bianca Majoli was an Italian-born in America in 1900. She was a concept artist, and writer. In 1935, she was the first woman to become a storyboard artist for Walt Disney Production. She is an inspiration for many women today at that time she stood for herself and became one of the known personalities of her times.

  1. Retta Scott 

Retta Scott was an American artist born in the year 1916. She was the first woman to receive screen credit. She was an animator at the Walt Disney Animation studios. She completed her education in art & music and soon joined the field of storyboard artists. 

  1. Rosana Sullivan –

Rosana Sullivan is an American director, storyboard artist, writer, and executive producer. Since 2011, she has worked for Pixar Animation Studios. In 2019 she wrote and directed her first animation short film, Kitbull, for which she received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Animator Short Film at the 92nd Academy Awards.   

  1. Shion Takeuchi – 

Shion Takeuchi is an American animator, screenwriter, storyboard artist, and showrunner. She is the creator of the Netflix television series Inside Job and has written and produced for shows “Regular Show”, “Gravity Falls”, “Disenchantment” and others. She was nominated twice for shows such as Annie Award in “writing in an Animation Television/Broadcast Production”, in the year 2016 and 2017, she worked on Gravity Falls. 

  1. Sylvia Moberly-Holland –

Sylvia Moberly-Holland was a British-born concept artist, and the second woman to become a storyboard artist for Walt Disney Production. She worked for disney in the year 1930s and 1940s and is especially known for her work on the 1940s film “Fantasia”

Best software and apps used by storyboard artists:

Software/Apps used by storyboard artists are:

  • Canva 
  • studioBinder Inc
  • FrameForge 3D Studio
  • Animation
  • StoryBoard Quick
  • Toon Boom Animation
  •  Clip Studio Paint
  • Celtx
  • Moviestorm

Books popular among storyboard artist:

  1. Storyboards: Motion in Art –


This publication teaches you how to properly storyboard both traditionally and digitally. You’ll also learn how and where to network and gain clients, how to demand your work, and how to charge accurately for your services. Expert storyboard artists can earn six figures per year. This market is all about connections, but you need to be good at them before you can turn them into business leads.This is one of the best guides to the storyboarding learning process, and the author is not some failed art teacher writing about storyboarding. He does this for a living, and you can put your trust in him.

  1. Drawing and Composition for Visual Storytellers – 

 In this book  you will know that,this is an incredibly technical book that teaches all of the various directorial shots and poses. You’ll learn how to draw characters with emotions and how to frame a scene so that the viewer feels the same way.This is primarily designed for visual artists working on comic books or graphic novels. However, it is also an important book for anyone interested in storyboarding because many of the concepts apply to moving pictures.

  1. The Storyboard Artist: A Guide to Freelancing in Film, TV, and Advertising


Artist Giuseppe Cristiano has been involved with the industry in a wide range of roles, including storyboarding and directing. These two skill sets overlap significantly, and he put his knowledge into print with his book The Storyboard Artist: A Guide to Freelancing in Film, TV, and Advertising.Giuseppe reaches this topic from the viewpoint of a complete novice, making this a great book for anyone with no prior knowledge of the storyboarding industry.For the professional storyboard artist, each chapter introduces new concepts and workflows. Giuseppe also provides a plethora of illustrations that showcase the various styles of boards from movies to animated shows and commercials. A fantastic book for beginners who want to delve into the world of professional storyboarding.

  1. Dynamic Life Drawing for Animators –

Drawing realistic storyboards naturally involves specific shots and directorial perspectives. However, it also includes characters with believable expressions and poses. Dynamic Life Drawing for Animators is the best book for practising exaggerated  poses. Storyboarding necessitates a more exaggerated style to demonstrate what each character is doing in the scene.

  1. Professional Storyboarding: Rules of Thumb –

Opening chapter initiate basic tips with snippet examples to assist with comprehending proper storyboard artists decorum. This is especially important for young artists with no industry experience because your portfolio must appear as professional as possible. You’ll learn about basic camera positions, camera movements, and how to board complicated scenes like fight sequences or car chases.

  1. Exploring Storyboarding –


Actually directors, artists, and occasionally writers, storyboard artists are. You must work hard to get this trifecta, and it does not come naturally.But, Wendy’s book will teach you all the principles of camera panning, jump cuts, and other more technical aspects frequently only seen in the field of film directing. This isn’t the best introduction for someone who wants to quickly put pen to paper because Wendy doesn’t get into technical aspects of storyboarding. But, this will show you how storyboarding functions, explain why you’re doing it, and provide important context for the entire creative process. The theory in this book can be combined with practical information in a more hands-on book like Storyboard Design Course.

Is storyboarding free?

Before spending money on production, a storyboarding tool may help you plan every shot and scenario of your making video. The best aspect is that you can get started without spending any money and that you frequently don’t even need to draw. Which states, you can start your career without an investment but  as time passes and you grow in your field, your earning will start thoroughly.