Pixar has had over two decades of captivating storytelling. The films they have produced have touched hearts and created characters that have become household friends. It’s been a running joke that their films are about giving feelings to items and creatures that we don’t think normally have emotions. But, their stories have much more to them than that. Pixar is now offering a way to learn how to tell stories like they do.
Khanacademy.org is a site that lets anyone learn in a non-classroom setting. They have partnerships with groups like NASA and Pixar to educate on a variety of subjects. Math, science, art, and other forms of learning are offered.
Pixar has had a few “courses” offered previous to the storytelling one that involve the technology side of movie making. This is the first time that they are offering something outside of technology.
Through a few videos, Pixar film makers describe how they come up with the stories of the films. The introductory video was very insightful and gave a quick lesson on telling “what you know.” Subsequent videos are titled “Your Unique Perspective,” “Your favorite stories,” “What if…,” “World and Character,” and finally “Storytelling advice.” After each video is an activity to try out. The site also tracks your progress, letting you know how far you are in the course.
The course isn’t to make you a complete master, or to get a job at Pixar itself. But, it’s a unique way to teach making stories to people who are curious. It’s fascinating to see the process and even to think out a story of your own as you learn. The overall series – Pixar In A Box – teaches how to make a movie from a story you come up with, and it’s interesting that they didn’t start with the storytelling process. It’s teased that a series on making characters will be coming soon as well.
If you want to learn to make your own stories or just curious about the Pixar process, this is a course for you! Check it out here.