If you want to understand visual storytelling, watching TV is one of the best places to start.
It’s research, honest.
If you start watching with an analytical eye, particularly during news segments, you’ll see some of the techniques that the professionals use to engage the audience and tell a story. One of the most important is the principal of shooting sequences.
When we’re new to visual storytelling, we tend to see the camera view (or slideshow, or website, or piece of paper) as an essentially static “stage” on which to present our vision. That’s understandable, but it makes for boring and one-dimensional results.
Good video journalists shoot sequences using patterns such as the Five Shot Sequence, which is explained in detail in this great slideshare deck. That gives you a systematic approach to telling the story in an engaging way, without forgetting essential context.
I’d recommend using the five shot sequence, or something like it, every time you shoot video. It’s also worth thinking about how you can apply the same principals to other forms of visual storytelling (e.g. presentations).
Remember: pros shoot sequences.