Since PowerPoint is itself a means to create final presentations, it’s no surprise that you can use it to apply a wide range of storyboard techniques for your business’s videos. These techniques span all phases of storyboard development, from writing specs for each panel to drawing panel images. Additional techniques that use PowerPoint’s audio and animation tools let you visualize your final video with a clarity that paper-based storyboards can’t approach.
Create Specs With Notes Pane
Use PowerPoint’s Notes pane to indicate what a storyboard panel should show, and also to indicate any sounds that will accompany the panel’s imagery. For example, type “[Business-suited man runs toward burning house. Sounds: suspenseful music, crackling fire.]” The Notes pane appears in Normal view, below the slide that holds the storyboard panel’s images. The Notes Page view also shows the Notes pane. You can select this view or Normal view by clicking the appropriate button in the Presentation Views group of the View tab.
PowerPoint lets you apply imagery-creation techniques that aren’t limited by your artistic skill. Use existing content to create a storyboard panel’s images, including shapes from the Shape and SmartArt galleries, and clip art from the Clip Art pane. You can also insert videos and still images into a storyboard panel, with commands in the Insert tab. If you do want to draw freehand, do so with the Scribble shape of the Shapes gallery, whose icon is a squiggly curve.
Use PowerPoint’s Rehearse Timings command to make a storyboard panel last as long as the final video sequence it represents. Doing so provides a much better sense of how the final sequence will look compared to a text description of the sequence’s duration. After you’ve drawn the storyboard’s panels, click the Slide Show tab’s “Rehearse timings” button to make PowerPoint display your storyboard as a slide show. As you thumb through the storyboard panels, PowerPoint records the time you spend on each one. After the slide show ends, check the “Use Timings” check box, and then play the show again. PowerPoint displays each panel for the duration you specified in the first showing.
Use the Record Audio tool to add a draft version of the story’s soundtrack, including its dialog and sound effects. Alternatively, use the “Audio from File” and “Insert Audio” commands to apply existing audio to your storyboard panels. These commands are located under the Insert tab’s Audio button.
PowerPoint’s animation commands let you apply techniques that bring your storyboard one step away from the final video. For example, use the Animation tab’s Custom Path command to make an image of a person move toward the image of a burning house: after selecting the person’s image, click the “Custom Path” button in the Animation gallery, and then drag a line from the person to the burning house.
Use the Animation tab’s gallery to apply the same sequence or scene transitions that you want to appear in the final video. For example, run the Fade command on the current storyboard panel to make the panel’s imagery dissolve dramatically into the background.
Information in this article applies to PowerPoint 2010. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.