Learn how to tell a story in your work with this free “Pixar in a Box” series of shorts

Feb 16, 2017

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Learn how to tell a story in your work with this free “Pixar in a Box” series of shorts

Feb 16, 2017

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Telling a story with our work can often be one of the most challenging things we face as creatives. But it’s also one of the most important. Whether it’s a drawing, a photograph or a film, having your work tell a story gives it meaning. It speaks to the viewer in a way that they can relate to it. According to Pixar, we are all story tellers. Every single one of us. Even if we don’t all know how to tap into it.

In this six part series, from Khan Academy Labs, directors, animators and other Pixar wizards talk to us about storytelling. How we naturally tell stories in the real world without even realising it. And how to look at some of our favourite movies and works to figure out what the story is and why it works. And, oh yes, there are activities!

YouTube video

The first video in the series is technically just the introduction. But even this short 3 minute piece gives us a lot to think about. It explains why we are all storytellers, how we can draw on what we know, and our own experiences. It starts with a simple premise. You’re talking with a friend about your day when they ask “What happened?” This is where your story begins.

It also explains why the first draft of your story may not be the best. Even for a photo shoot, your idea might take make iterations of tweaking to really tell a story and speak to the viewer.

The entire six part series covers a good range of topics to make us think about how we can tell our stories.

  • Lesson 1 : We are all storytellers
  • Lesson 2 : Your unique perspective
  • Lesson 3 : Your favourite stories
  • Lesson 4 : What if…
  • Lesson 5 : World & character
  • Lesson 6 : Storytelling advice

Activities along the way force us to challenge what we learn in each video. It’s completely free, so it’s worth checking out, even if you already feel confident in your ability to tell a story.

You can follow the entire series on the Khan Academy website.

[via No Film School]

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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