MacDirectory Magazine

Spring-Summer 2008 (#37)

MacDirectory magazine is the premiere creative lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts featuring interviews, in-depth tech reviews, Apple news, insights, latest Apple patents, apps, market analysis, entertainment and more.

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Page 126 of 178

126 MacDirectory CLOSER LOOK POWERPRODUCTION SOFTWARE > BRINGING VISION TO LIFE PowerProduction started out as a consulting firm, until customer questions about storyboarding caused a change of direction. PowerProduction Software co-founder and CTO Paul Clatworthy told MacDirectory, "One of my director friends said he needed something (he could) storyboard with, and I suggested he just draw and he whispered, 'But Paul, I can't draw.' So, we tried to think of a way to make a tool that would assist with storyboarding." The resulting product was called Storyboard Quick, and it was so popular that it caused PowerProduction's focus to move from consulting to software. Billed as "an easy-to-use, easy-to-learn storyboard software," Storyboard Quick has grown, since its inception, from an internal application used by film professionals to a tool that has earned a growing place in all types of industries. One reason for this tremendous success is the fact that even as Storyboard Quick has evolved, the basic concept upon which it was built, that is, to keep it user- friendly, has not been compromised. Clatworthy admitted that it was "always a challenge" to keep up with changes in technology, but stressed that Power- Production feels it is just as important to keep their tools "approachable, because even though the technology rockets along, the people who are just coming to the whole planning process still need some type of easy to use (product) so they can get to production." As for those users whose needs and skill sets have moved a bit beyond Storyboard Quick, PowerProduction also has Story- Board Artist. This tool has been designed especially "for media-savvy professionals who want to create amazing looking storyboards for film, video production, animation, broadcast, education or any type of media development." Storyboard Quick uses an easy to learn interface to provide users with props, features, character customization, and the ability to import scripts from all major screenwriting and technical applications. Storyboard Artist, meanwhile, includes all of Storyboard Quick's functionality, plus higher level features, including a timeline that creates animatic projects automatically, the ability to import and edit multiple sound tracks, a pan and zoom tool that creates in-frame motion, and the ability to export your project to a variety of formats, including HTML. Just like Storyboard Quick, Storyboard Artist came about as an answer to customer needs. "People used to be able to go to the advertiser, jump up and down, wave their arms and get the job, but those days are gone. As the customers got more savvy the producers had to get more detailed on what they showed," explained Clatworthy. "So…(customers) started asking for more multimedia type functions." It was during this time that PowerProduc- tion also saw a huge growth in the types of industries using storyboards. Suddenly, educators, business executives, and even students were looking for an easy and effective way to express their visions. It is a diversity that Clatworthy welcomes. "We see it as we've had this piece of land outside of town and now the town has grown out to meet us." As for the future, Clatworthy told MacDirectory that PowerProduction will continue to do what it does best, provide high-end, easy-to-use storyboarding tools for professionals in a wide variety of fields. WORDS BY JONE DEVLIN

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