How prioritizing previsualization saves you time and money.

Almost every producer has gotten feedback like, “We built this beautiful set, but I don’t see any of it!” It happens, and it’s usually because of unclear communication in the planning stages :/

Prioritizing Previz PAYS, and it can even be painless! Here’s why we advise spending lavish attention on the previsualization process—photography, storyboards, animatics, and the like:

Why is Previz so important?

Previz provides structure. Previz gives collaborators a necessary framework where everyone can see what’s planned and respond accordingly. Proper Previz doesn’t preclude “happy accidents”, but it does, however, ensure that resources be used strategically. This way, creativity can flow through every phase of production—not just onset, when pressure is high, and time is limited.

Previz is approachable.

Don’t be intimidated! Previsualization can be easy-to-learn, affordable, and as low- or high-tech as you like! You can do a photomatic or animatic of the concept. Choose the application that matches your needs keeping in mind the time you can devote to mastering it. More complex concepts with many moving parts require more robust functionality, so start by identifying the variables in the shoot that need to be worked out.

Get the right help.

Leverage people, tools and training to make the Previz process as productive and painless as possible. Start by picking the Previz method that gives you the best value. You’ve probably heard of SketchUp, and you can find training, trainers and forums on their website to help you get started. There are other programs, too. Each has its own set of features and commensurate learning curve. Take a look at Previz, Moviestorm, FrameForge and Storyboarder, and see which meets your needs. Then, you can either take a DIY approach, or if you don’t have the right tools and experience, find someone who does.

The Takeaway

To make the most of resources, time and budget, Previz is your best friend. Elevate every project you work on by getting familiar with your Previz options; by getting firsthand experience using them; or by cultivating relationships with people who can help. (And be sure to check out our video, up top, which goes into more detail about SketchUp!)