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Multimedia Project Guidelines: Pre-Production

multimedia, filming, editing


So you want to start a media project?

The first step called "Pre-Production" is important in laying out a plan and preparing all that is necessary to film your project. Here is the overview of the major steps that will need to be done:

  1. Research - Think about what will be needed in a broad sense.  Do you need to do some fact-finding in order to convey what is needed?
  2. Script/Storyboarding/Interview - You might think that ad-libbing might work, but in most cases, it appears like rambling.  Organizing your thoughts in words before you say them is the key to a polished piece.  Use storyboarding if you need to set up scenes in different locations.  
  3. Equipment - Be familiar with what you have access to.  Don't assume the Media Center has what you need.  What equipment to you have and have access to? Do you know how to use it and what the limitations are?




Once you have an idea of what you want to film, you need to be able to answer some basic questions.

  • Who is my audience?
  • What message am I trying to convey with my project?
  • Where is this project going to be seen?
  • Roughly how much time should I plan out for this?
  • What equipment do I need to complete this?

In the research part of the pre-production stage, this is when you layout what exactly needs to happen to get the project done.




Finally, you will need to make sure you have the proper equipment to create your project. The Trible Library Media Center has a wonderful selection of equipment that you may choose to use if you do not have your own. It is free, and available to all of Christopher Newport's students, faculty and staff.

  • Look at the Circulating Equipment page, to see all of what we have to offer.  If you are unsure, visit the service desk of the Media Center to ask what would be best for what you are doing.
  • Before a person can check out our equipment, be familiar with the loan policy as well as due dates.
  • Some equipment is frequently checked out. Our Reservation Page allows you to place an item on hold so that it is available when you are ready to work on your project.


Creating the Video

There are several methods of creating video:

  • Recording original footage
  • Using other produced video clips together to create something new
  • Using still images with narration or subtitles
  • Using a combination of the above

Make sure you have reviewed a rubric so you know what is expected.  Be sure to refer back to these occasionally.

Digital Audio


A great digital audio primer.  This can be helpful if you want to know more technical aspects of audio.



This article from the Writer's Store may help you in formatting and articulating yourself.  It may even give you confidence and inspiration in creating your script.  Of course, it does not have to be formal.  Sketching out notes and lines of dialog helps to put thoughts down so others can see.  Have a classmate or friend look over what you have to see if it makes sense.


Storyboarding is very useful in planning your media project. You are able to organize your thoughts, and gain better focus on making your vision unfold panel by panel. It allows you to center on what you want to have in each scene, giving a better perception of what your media project will look like.

Image taken from: Storyboard Example

Several things to have in your storyboard include:

  • dialog
  • camera movements/angles
  • lighting
  • soundtrack/sounds/foleys/zingers
  • brief summary of action

There are several ways to make your storyboard, including using those that are pre-made, creating one in a word processor, or even drawing it freehand.

Printable Paper provides free downloadable templates to use at no expense.


If you are filming an interview, all you need to do is write down your interview questions. Make sure they are clear and concise.
If this is for research purposes, make sure to avoid certain questions that will throw your information off track.

If your potential interviewee tends to keep up a busy schedule, make sure you make an arrangement with them in advance and be aware of any mobility issues they have.  Their time is precious and you may not be able to get a second chance if you fail.  Also, if you have to travel to your subject, be respectful of their time as they are probably on the clock!

Trible Library provides links to other websites to aid in research and is not responsible for the content or privacy policy of those sites.