Posts tagged ‘storytelling’

8 Tips for Creating Great Stories from George R. R. Martin, Junot Diaz, and Other Top Storytellers

Jeff Vandermeer’s Wonderbook: The Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction is jammed with storytelling wisdom from some of world’s top fantasy writers. Here’s some of it.

What the hell is a Story Lizard? In Wonderbook: The Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction (Abrams Books, October 15), Story Lizards join Prologue Fish and other infographic helpmates designed to banish dry textual analysis in favor of a kicking, screaming, slithering approach to storytelling creativity.

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5 Things UX And UI Designers Could Learn From Wes Anderson

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Director Wes Anderson has always been distinguished for his visual artistry, detail-rich sets, and storybook-like imagery. From the whimsical, campy feel of Moonrise Kingdom to the carefully crafted sets and miniatures in The Grand Budapest Hotel, Anderson’s movies are visual masterpieces.

The design-conscious filmmaker has some practices in common with successful mobile user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) designers. Professional designers can learn to improve their apps by studying the director’s techniques and implementing such practices within their creative processes. Here are five key tips:

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We’re losing all our Strong Female Characters to Trinity Syndrome

“…the Strong Female Character With Nothing To Do—is becoming more and more common.” Interesting read.

DreamWorks’ How To Train Your Dragon 2 considerably expands the world introduced in the first film, and that expansion includes a significant new presence: Valka, the long-lost mother of dragon-riding protagonist Hiccup, voiced by Cate Blanchett. The film devotes much of its sweet, sensitive middle act to introducing her, and building her up into a complicated, nuanced character. She’s mysterious and formidable, capable of taking Hiccup and his dragon partner Toothless out of the sky with casual ease. She’s knowledgable: Two decades of studying dragons means she knows Toothless’ anatomy better than he does. She’s wise. She’s principled. She’s joyous. She’s divided. She’s damaged. She’s vulnerable. She’s something female characters so often aren’t in action/adventure films with male protagonists: She’s interesting.

Too bad the story gives her absolutely nothing to do.

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How Stories Change the Brain

Great article about storytelling via the Greater Good Science Center at Berkley.

By Paul J. Zak | December 17, 2013

Ben’s dying.

That’s what Ben’s father says to the camera as we see Ben play in the background. Ben is two years old and doesn’t know that a brain tumor will take his life in a matter of months.

Ben’s father tells us how difficult it is to be joyful around Ben because the father knows what is coming. But in the end he resolves to find the strength to be genuinely happy for Ben’s sake, right up to Ben’s last breath.

Everyone can relate to this story. An innocent treated unfairly, and a protector who seeks to right the wrong—but can only do so by finding the courage to change himself and become a better person.

recent analysis identifies this “hero’s journey” story as the foundation for more than half of the movies that come out of Hollywood, and countless books of fiction and nonfiction. And, if you take a look, this structure is in the majority of the most-watched TED talks.

Why are we so attracted to stories? My lab has spent the last several years seeking to understand why stories can move us to tears, change our attitudes, opinions and behaviors, and even inspire us—and how stories change our brains, often for the better. Here’s what we’ve learned. Continue reading…

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Science, Storytelling, and “Gut Churn”: Jad Abumrad on the Secrets of Creative Success

On diving head-first into the unknown.

Since 2004, Radiolab has been sparking a singular kind of magic at the intersection of science and storytelling, redefining not only public radio but also the “role of scientific culture in modern society,” to borrow Richard Feynman’s words.

In this fantastic talk from The 99% ConferenceRadiolab mastermind and MacArthur genius Jad Abumrad takes us behind the scenes to explore the tribulations and triumphs of building a novel paradigm from the ground up. Continue reading…

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A Six Year Old’s Imagination Becomes Adorable Viral Short Film

This is just so freaking adorable and happy, I have to share.
[vimeo http://vimeo.com/58659769 w=600&h=381]

We all get a little scared sometimes. Scared of graduating school without a plan; scared of monsters. One six year old has a remedy: think of something else until the “nervous has gone out of you.” Think of juice, pizza, and a piano shaped chocolate chip cookie. In other words, he says, “when the scared feeling comes into you, the scared is scared of things you like.” This is all advice told to filmmaker Bianca Giaever, who asked one very clever child to tell her a story…about anything…so that she could turn it into a movie.

The story she heard was as brilliant as the film she created to go along with the narrative. Giaever explains on her Vimeo, “I asked a six year old what my movie should be about, and this is what he told me.” Watching the finished product leaves you wondering what other genius we’d learn of if children’s voices were heard a little bit more often. And the good news is that given the internet success her short has already had, Giaever probably doesn’t need to be scared about graduating school anymore.

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The Future of Storytelling: Immersion, Integration, Interactivity, Impact

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A new study from research consultancy Latitude lays out “The Future of Storytelling.”

As technology becomes more advanced and more accessible across multiple platforms, it’s only natural for consumers to expect increasingly higher standards of creativity and engagement from content creators. However, with social media, apps, tablets, smartphones, websites, TV, etc. all part of the audience’s viewing habit, learning how stories should be evolving and how to make narratives work across platforms is a complicated matter. A new study offers some perspectives on what audiences may be looking for in their stories. Continue reading…

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From Rapunzel to The Little Red Riding Hood, Beloved Children’s Classics as Minimalist Posters

These are just fun. (Via Brain Pickings)

Visual hyper-distillation of iconic storytelling.

As a lover of children’s books, especially classic ones with timeless wisdom for grown-ups, and an admirer of minimalist posters that distill complex stories or ideas in clean graphic elements, I am infinitely delighted by these hyper-minimalist takes on beloved children’s classics by designer Christian Jackson.

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