In the final chapter of Liz Blazer’s book Animated Storytelling, she explains what we should do with our freshly completed project. It’s time to put our baby out into the world and share it with others—right after we package and prepare it, of course.
Packaging Your Project
First, you need to create a few assets to help you more quickly and consistently tell your story. Consider preparing the following:
Title Logo and Still Image
Create a legible logo of your story title and pair it with an image from your film that “embodies your story.” Think of this as your project poster or hero image. It will promote your film and will appear on all sorts of promotional materials. Most importantly, it will most likely be the first thing many people see of your work.
The synopsis is a short description of your project. In only 2-3 sentences, it summarizes your project. It will also be used repeatedly, so take the time to get it right.
Now that you’ve told the world about your project tell them more about yourself. Include any accomplishments related to your field or a fun fact.
Lastly, talk about your motivation to create your film and tell this particular story. Whether your inspiration was personal or inquisitory, the story behind your work will come up often. This pre-written description will help you explain it to others.
Build Your Network
Now that you’ve created your assets, it’s time to build your network. Networking can happen both online and in-person so take advantage of the opportunities in both. Join online organizations related to your field, make new friends and reach out to groups who might be interested in your work for the craft and the content. The trick is not just to join these online communities but to become an active and engaged member. Show appreciation for other people’s work, share information you find interesting, and reach out to people.
When networking in person, don’t be afraid to be yourself. These scenarios can be awkward, but being you can help take the edge off and help you form meaningful connections.
Share and Repeat
Once you’ve built your online community, start sharing your work in doses. Instead of having one big reveal, create interest by posting articles about your work first or behind-the-scenes photos or storyboard sketches. Let your new network grow their interest first, then share the project.
Alright! You’ve built your network and share your hard work. That’s an awesome feeling! Blazer leaves us with one last piece of advice, which is to repeat the whole process. In a documentary about Paul McCartney, he speaks of having little regrets about the work he’s created in the past because there is so much more new music to make. Instead of living in a state of constant reflection, he “forges ahead.” Creatives have this drive to create, and the best way to keep up the momentum is by dreaming up future ideas versus analyzing the past. Of course, take breaks when you need them, and don’t be afraid to jump back when you are ready.
Liz Blazer’s book and my recent motion graphic design experiences have been creatively intimidating and invigorating. I’ve learned so much from each project, and those lessons have fueled my interest in pursuing new creative endeavors. I’ve learned the power of the creative process, and the possibilities storytelling offers through various motion graphic styles. My brain is tired from the fast pace of learning and intensive work over the past seven weeks. So now that I’ve wrapped up my last project I’ll give it what it needs: a break. Then I’ll be creatively charged for the next endeavor. I’ll continue to make, share, rest and repeat, because nothing brings me more joy than this equally energizing and exhausting process.
Animated Storytelling: Simple Steps For Creating Animation and Motion Graphics. 1st Edition. by Liz Blazer. https://www.amazon.com/Animated-Storytelling-Creating-Animation-Graphics/dp/013413365X