digistories Digital Storytelling

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What is a digital story?

How is a digital story made?

What skills are acquired?

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How is a digital story made?

The story is the start and the heart of the process. Each skills workshop starts with a Storycircle. Participants discover the joy of storytelling and learn the basics of script writing using simple exercises. The story they create forms the basis for the rest of the workshop.

The visual content of the story is usually based on still photographs selected and scanned during image capture. Additional material may be generated from video, scanning and digitally photographing objects, documents and simple graphics. The images are captured to the hard drive of the workshop computer in preparation for the production workshop that follows.

Voice coaching and recording come next to lay down the voice track. At this point most of the ingredients of the digital story have been gathered. The process of compiling them into a short movie is what follows. Each step begins with a short tutorial and hands on exercises in the use of the hardware and software.

image processing. The captured images are resized and cropped during the first stage of the production workshop ready to be imported into a video editing programme. Story titles and credits are created during this day too.

Video editing starts by importing the assets or ingredients - sound track, images and any video - into the video editing software. The soundtrack is placed in the timeline first and images arranged to produce the first roughcut or slideshow.

As the workshop advances new images are gathered or generated to complete the sequence on the timeline and effects are introduced to turn the slideshow into a movie.

The workshop concludes with a presentation or world premiere of the films. Friends and family are invited to join the audience as everyone applauds the hard work of the participants.

Workshop timeline

Workshop timeline


Tell Us Your Story

The tutors manual for a radio storytelling project I set up with the BBC and the Learning and Skills Councils in the North West is available on the BBC RaW site.

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* Telling Lives blog

BBC Telling Lives

BBC Capture Wales


KQED Digital Storytelling Initiative

Centre for Digital Storytelling

Australian Centre for the Moving Image

Digital Storytelling Festival

Next Exit

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