Story Is Everything
Video production is a complex, multi-faceted process. Things can go wrong — or right — at many different stages of production. And many of us love the technical aspects of our craft, like tinkering with the latest camera and computer technology, or the slow process of learning all the intricacies behind an obscure subject, like color science or sensor technology. You can go as deep into any rabbit hole of production as you like. Expertise has real payoffs. And it’s our job to understand the little technical details that can make or break a project.
But today I want to talk about story, and why it matters a lot more than any technical aspect of production.
Story is the reason for every other aspect of production. When dozens of hardworking crew members and talent show up on set, it’s all for the purpose of telling a story. The props are designed to suit the story. The talent play characters in the story. The crew are experts at capturing visuals and sounds, but without a good story worth capturing, our skills are futile. Would anyone watch an 8K, perfectly lit, 240fps video of paint drying?
This certainly applies to post-production as well. An animated effect will only be effective if it serves a clear purpose for the story. Audiences don’t appreciate videos from the perspective of how difficult they were to create, unless you’re James Cameron making Avatar. Viewers only care about how entertaining and enjoyable the video is for them to watch.
Look at the most-viewed videos in the world today. They aren’t recorded on cinema cameras but rather selfie cameras. The content itself is compelling enough to elevate phone footage into an immersive, entertaining experience. Meanwhile, even Hollywood levels of sheen can’t cover up the bad taste of a poor story.
Don’t get me wrong — polishing every detail of a video is important to me, and I obsess over capturing everything in the highest quality possible. But truly, I don’t believe that’s the reason people choose to work with Wonder Storytelling. I think it’s because beneath all the layers of professionalism and polish, our first priority is creating an authentic, compelling, well-structured storyline.
Let me tell you about a video I edited years ago that went viral in a big way, and how it cemented my belief in the fundamental importance of story.
Hope In Demand
Story coming soon!
As Seen On TV
Here is a non-exhaustive list of the outlets who published or wrote about the video:
List coming soon.