A couple of weeks back, I took my son to London’s Science Museum, to their fantastic exhibition about the first 20 years of the Pixar film/animation studio. Benedict was enthralled by the original sketches of from Nemo, Toy Story and more; I was captivated by the descriptions of their storyboarding process.
Compare and contrast with many proposal teams. Proposal storyboarding is often accomplished via group discussion of a particular section / question; the team’s subsequent ability to stand back from their own work to bring creative new ideas is inevitably inhibited. We need to remember to bring in fresh pairs of eyes if we want to generate those constructively critical comments and to maximise the creative potential from proposal storyboarding.
The other obvious difference is that Pixar’s storyboards are pictorial: after all, their ultimate deliverable is a cartoon. Proposal teams deliver text-heavy documents, and therefore their storyboards are often very textual (even filled in on pre-printed forms). “Draw me a picture” can be an incredibly powerful intervention when you’re trying to get content contributors to design cool answers, even if you’re not going to use the graphic in the final document.
If you’re interested, the exhibition’s only on until the 11 June. It’s well worth a trip across town, if you happen to be in London.