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Visuals: Ten Vital Areas

By Michael Schilf · January 22, 2010

Scenes require visual movement. And scene description should include detailed information concerning one or more of the following areas: 

1. The physical location of the scene.

2. Indications about the world of the story.

3. Which characters are present, and indications of their physical condition or appearance. 

4. The specific actions of the various characters. 

5. An indication of the image size, motion of the camera or the character, and/or a hint at the compositions of visuals within the frame, without directing on the page.

6. Clues about the style of story being told and about the style of the individual scenes when there are changes from present to flashback, from reality to fantasy, from surreal to lucid. 

7. Contrasts between scenes or between various moments within scenes. 

8. Indications about changes in pace and rhythm. 

9. Indications of light, texture, and color. 

10. Indications of sounds, both objective and subjective.