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Video production timelines

One of the most common questions we get at Key West Video is about timelines. People want to know: How long will it take to complete my video? The answer to this question depends on a lot of factors. What kind of video are we producing? What’s the target run time of the video? Are we taking care of casting? If we’re shooting live-action, will the shoot take place at your business, in our studio, or in some other location? Is there travel involved?

When we get an inquiry about a new video, we work with each client on an individual basis to determine how long that project will take. Once we have a better idea of what the client is after, we can provide an estimated timeline. We also do our best to work within the timeframe that suits a client. If there’s a set deadline, we try to work backwards to determine the best way to meet the drop-dead date. If there’s more flexibility, we let the client decide how quickly they want to proceed.

Live-Action Projects

When we work on a video project that involves shooting, this is referred to as a live-action project. A shot list is needed for this kind of production, while most of the other pre-production steps are similar to an animation timeline. The production stage is focused on the actual shoot day or days. Post-production covers all the elements that are involved during an edit. Click below for a sample timeline showing the progression of a live-action project.

man shooting video
Live-action projects include shoot time

Live-Action Sample Timeline

Animation Projects

An animation project timeline looks slightly different. While a live-action project may have an associated storyboard, an animation project always has a storyboard. During pre-production, the animator uses the storyboard to show the client how the characters, background, and colours will look according to their input. Once these elements are approved, we can move on to production. The actual animation doesn’t happen until post-production when the client has approved the storyboard and the script has been recorded.  Click below to see a sample timeline for an animation project.

storyboard with images and descriptions, timelines
Storyboard from one of our projects

Animation Sample Timeline

Timing is Everything

As you can see from the timelines above, projects are divided into three main segments. The amount of time spent on each stage is affected by the particulars of a project. Typically, projects are either live-action or animation but not a combination of the two. However, many live-action projects include text or graphic elements.

The producers at Key West Video work closely with clients in their best effort to stick to the timeline established at the start of a project. We’re proud to say that our team is agile enough to meet even tight deadlines without sacrificing quality. Call us today for a free quote.

This blog was originally posted in 2011 and has been updated to reflect current practices.

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