Digital Storytelling

“Digital” storytelling refers to the media used to convey the story. The digital stories are simply stories that are created and disseminated by using digital media. They are actually real experiences of their creators – written, narrated and illustrated by the person who has experienced the story.

Through digital storytelling, people who don’t have any technical knowledge are able to use the information communication technologies for creating a video of their story. The product is often a 2-5 minute film which is a combination of a narrative part from a personal story, photographs and music.

The process of creating a digital story consists of several steps:

Step 1:  Story planning

The first step is to select a story that you want to tell. The story should be a personal experience that you will share with the others and indirectly enable them to experience the things that have happened to you. A good story could have a dramatic effect on the viewer, cause laughter or fear, but it is best if the viewer identifies himself in the story.

Step 2: Writing the script

The second step consists of finalizing the story, writing the script that will actually be the narration for the story and the starting point for the digital story.

Step 3: Creating audio from the script

After the script has been written, the creator should make an audio record in which he will read the finalized story. These records will be the basis of the story. The tool that can be used for this step is Audacity, an open source application used for audio editing.

Step 4: Building the story

Upon the completion of the story and the narration, the photographs appearing in the video should be planned. The selected photographs don’t have to literally represent what the narrator is talking about, so any kind of illustration can be used for the story. Before they are imported in the video of the story, the selected photographs are edited with the Gimp application.

Step 5: Preparing the video

This step requires the most technical knowledge. Here we import all the graphics and sounds in a video editing application and initiate the creation of the video from the story. In the application, all the graphics are sequenced according to the narration, and effects and transitions are added. Video editing applications are not very user friendly for a user without sufficient technical knowledge, therefore open source applications are not used here. Use of simple tools, such as Windows Movie Maker or Adobe Premier Elements is recommended. The Sinelerra application is an option that can be used in the Linux operative system.

Step 6: Completing and sharing the video

After the video has been completed, it is exported and prepared for sharing.Often, the creators of digital stories are not willing to share their stories online or they decide to do it under a certain nickname. There are several specialized websites for sharing digital stories, such as the Center for Digital Storytelling and StoryBox.

Recently, training for digital storytelling was held in Saraevo, during which the participants were trained for holding trainings of this kind. Metamorphosis Foundation participated in this training with two of its representatives: Irina Shumadieva and Elena Ignatova.The Metamorphosis Foundation plans to hold this type of trainings and include them in future activities.

Elena Ignatova

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