What exactly is visual storytelling? Technically, it is the incorporation of visuals (pictures, photographs, paintings, images) in a story.
We’d like to think of it more as a marriage of words and visuals when telling a story.
What makes visual storytelling so impactful? Here are three reasons:
1. Increase understanding of the message
When we look at a picture or a painting, it is often open to interpretation and one person’s interpretation might be different from another person’s interpretation. However, when a visual is accompanied by words, the words frame the picture and help the viewer to understand the artist or creator’s message behind that particular visual.
In addition, coming up with a compelling visual narrative hones different skillsets: from writing well, having an eye for gripping visuals, knowing what actions and dramatisations work well for one’s story together with knowledge of the intended audience.
2. Enhances the imagination and ‘flow’ of the story
Although one could argue that words alone are sufficient to tell a story, adding visuals can make the story come more ‘alive’. The visuals help to complement what the words are saying and vice versa. The readers or audience are able to appreciate both the visuals and the words as they are listening to or reading the story. Sometimes, visuals could also express certain things, like emotions, or paint a vivid scene better than just the words.
Planning a series of visuals accompanied by text would prompt the writer to think about the best way that a story should be structured. Visualising the story would enable the writer to improve on the logical flow of events and guide the audience throughout the story smoothly.
3. Aids in Memory
In today’s world, it is impossible not to come across visual storytelling, whether it is in the news or on social media. Visual stories take the form of infographics, website content and poster designs, just to name a few. More and more people and organisations are turning to visual storytelling because it is regarded as an effective form of persuasion and influence. After all, there has been extensive research that has shown how human beings remember information better if it is presented in a ‘visual’ way. For example, one research study shows that people remember 80% of what they see and do, only 20% of what they have read and 10% of what they hear (Holland, 2016). Source: https://www.b2bmarketing.net/
An example of an infograph:
Despite being so common, not everyone knows the skills and tools to be an adept visual storyteller. This is why it is necessary to teach visual storytelling, especially to children, because by the time they enter the workforce, they would be expected to be proficient visual storytellers.
The good news is that we will be organising a unique visual storytelling workshop on the 26th and 27th of June entitled “Moving Storytelling”. In this workshop, the students will learn how to combine scriptwriting, drama and filming to produce a moving story.