Film - No Break for the Broken - Storyboards and Set Dressing.

Being an artist, it was easy to get carried away with over working boards. Sometimes I'd spend all night on a page, other times I'd do them the morning of the shoot.  Of course last minute boards are nothing more than rough chicken scratch.  Often just top down x and o shot planning.

Obsolete Boards, Lost Location, Set Dressing.

So what happens when you spend a lot of time doing detailed story boards?  You lose your location and have to wing it!


I thought I had landed the perfect office cube location, only for it to be pulled out from under me the last minute.  I didn't want to re-schedule so I had to find a quick replacement.  The best I could do was one of those places where you can rent an office for a day.  Unfortunately those places don't have cubicles, so we had to fake a cube space with strategic set dressing and camera angles.

In the scene above, the Boss and Nancy face each other. The WIDE 2-Shot and the bosses MEDIUM shot have cube-land backgrounds that make the scene interesting.   Unfortunately we couldn't pull off these shots with the space we had.  Instead, we positioned the actors side by side and focused most of the set dressing behind them.

lackluster rent-an-office space.

strategic placement of wall partition to fake a cubicle.

2  partitions, posters, background extras, and framing created a nice office feel.

You can make a simple set more interesting at night with the use of light and shadows.

Storyboards that worked as planned:

I did these ones after casting, so the characters on the boards match the actors more closely than the previous boards.

Boards also helped to communicate ideas with the choreographer.

Quick chicken scratch board indicating camera movement.

I changed the line of sight once on location because I preferred the shots I could get from this side. 

Next level chicken scratch 

To be cont'd - compositing


  1. awesome post man! I wish I had the talent to carry out storyboards, i can barely draw a stick figure so Im stuck not being able to communicate the shots I want


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