Maybe getting too theoretical…

I’m very much a visual person.

It’s how I learn. It’s how I push others to teach because I know that I’m not the only visual learner.

Some of my favorite things on the internet is when people use animation to explain an idea or a problem. Well done graphics can really make a point.

I love videos like this (I mostly like Red Letter Media and people poking fun at Adam Sandler’s blatantly terrible movies) because it visually allows me to understand a concept. However, can other things be just as animated as animation itself?

I don’t know if it would surprise anyone that I was in radio. I loved the storytelling aspect of it. However, it’s very much different than animation or anything you see with your eyes. That because it relies heavily on your ears and brain. Your imagination.

The first time I was really fascinated with audio-only storytelling was when a boyfriend gave me an MP3 of the first Harry Potter audiobook, read by Jim Dale. I never jumped on the bandwagon before when the books first came out. Yeah I watched the movies, but I wasn’t a huge fan. My usual response was, “meh”.

Then I started listening to Jim Dale in my car ride to school. Dale changed things for me. His take on different characters, the inflection in his voice, brought J.K. Rowling’s words to life for me. I wondered how Dale could, in a way, animate and bring the story to life in which the books and movies did not do for me. How can a voice do that?

Well for one thing it’s preference. I’m not much of a reader. Like I said, I’m a visual learner. But audio isn’t visual. How can this be? I believe it’s the talent that Rowling had in her writing that was made more apparent to me with Dale’s voice.

This was something that encountered when I was a theatre student. There was a certain talent that you worked on with voice. Projection and enunciation that would help others understand your story. But now here comes the shift. Theatre is much more about the ACT, thus acting. There was a lot of emphasis when I was in classes that you can’t just tell the audience what was happening. You had to show it. I feel like that’s extremely important. If you ever been to an improv show, you know how funny a scene can be when the actors are speaking complete nonsense but their actions are very exaggerated and telling. Or watching a silent film by with Charlie Chaplin.

If you look at an episode of, let’s say Family Guy, there’s not a lot of action happening in the majority of scenes. It’s usually the characters standing around occasionally lifting their hands and talking. The edgy jokes are what carry the show.

So why is it that I’m more entertained by an audio book compared to a movie, yet stimulated by an improv skit that hardly has any talking?

I believe a lot of it is practiced talent, but also knowing in context what the story needs. The Adam Sandler video above was already entertaining in the original Red Letter Media video alone, but the animation added more visuals to help me understand the ridiculousness of it all.

I believe that animation with good acting, audio wise and actual action, can make a fantastic story for anyone.


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