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Digital Storytelling 101
Digital Storytelling 101
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Digital Storytelling uses digital media to create media-rich stories to tell, to share, and to preserve. Digital stories derive their power through weaving images, music, narrative and voice together, thereby giving deep dimension and vivid color to characters, situations, and insights............
Digital Storytelling Association
Digital storytelling challenges students to take their written ideas and translate them into a visual medium.
What is a Digital Story?
Digital storytelling is the combining of the ancient art of oral storytelling and the modern multimedia tools to deliver tales using images, sound, music, and voice.
Basically, the stories the students already have written on paper or orally tell are transformed into digital format through the use of computers and digital cameras
The Center for Digital Storytelling
has defined seven elements for creating effective and interesting multimedia stories.
A Point (of View)
Stories are told to make a point and should not be presented as a recitation of mere facts. Define the premise of your story so that all parts can serve to make the point. Consider your audience and direct the point to them.
A Dramatic Question
You want to capture your audience’s attention at the beginning of the piece and hold their interest throughout. Typically you want to pose the dramatic question in the opening lines and resolve it in the closing lines.
Emotional content can help hold your audiences attention. The images, effects, music and tone of voice all lend to contributing emotion to the piece. Try to keep the elements consistent with the emotion of the moment.
The Gift of Your Voice
Your voice is a great gift and even thought you don’t like to hear it, others do. If you “read” your script your audience will not know how to react. Take time to learn and practice your script so you can speak in a conversational voice. Record several takes and select the best one. Trust that your audience will think it is perfect.
The Power of The Soundtrack
Music is a big plus to a digital story. The right music can set the story in time and can convey emotion. Play music behind an image and a specific emotion is generated. Change the music behind the same image and an entirely different emotion is experienced. Sound effects can add tension and excitement to a piece, but be careful, they can be a distraction too.
Plan to leave some of your work on the “cutting room floor”. A compact, fast moving digital story will contain only those elements necessary to move the audience from beginning to end. We know that our brains are constantly filling in (from our own experiences) details from suggestions made by sights and sounds. Don’t give every minute detail to clarify your story, let your audience fill in some of the blanks.
The rhythm of the piece is what keeps your audience’s interest in the story. Changing pace within the story can facilitate moving the audience from one emotion to another. Music tempo, speech rate, image duration, and panning and zooming speed all work to establish pace. Generally pace will be consistent, but one in a while it will pause, accelerate, decelerate, stop or blast-off. Trust your own senses, we all move at our own pace.
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