Monday, May 12, 2008

Tell a story in 5 frames - Visual story telling with Flickr

Flickr is probably my favorite Web 2.0 application. A previous post on this Blog covers Flickr’s basics, but there is a clever use of this Web tool related to storytelling. A group exists for Flickr users who want to meet this challenge: can you tell a story with just five images?

The guidelines for having your story accepted for inclusion in this group state:

A good story has characters in action with a beginning, middle, and an ending. Fortunately a lot of information can be given in a single photograph, enhancing the limitations of five photographs for your story. Location, time, and atmosphere aid viewer imagination. Keep standards of pictorial beauty, but pack as many story telling elements in one photograph as possible to develop an action.

1st photo: establish characters and location.

2nd photo: create a situation with possibilities of what might happen.

3rd photo: involve the characters in the situation.

4th photo: build to probable outcomes

5th photo: have a logical, but surprising, end.

This is a real challenge – the brevity and succinctness of the stories that are accepted into the pool are truly impressive. Sure, there are some that are lame, or at least puny, but try it yourself. Teachers might consider this as a possible student project.