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How Filmmaking & Animated Explainers Are Similar Art Forms

At The Bear’s Den, we are always stretching our visual and verbal storytelling skills with client video projects, new content, and most recently a short film. Back in December, we filmed a short film titled Waffle, written and directed by our co-owner Victor Vargas. We filmed it in Arizona with a great team of local filmmakers and actors.

The story of Waffle follows Jay, a twenty-year-old who finds his first love, Michelle. From the moment they lock eyes they instantly click and we get to see their relationship unfold, peaking at a point where Jay gives Michelle a special gift; a rescue dog named Waffle. Their relationship is beautiful, funny, young and exciting, but unfortunately, after some major ups and downs, Michelle decides to end it and Jay is left with Waffle.


Working on a short film is similar to working on a company animated explainer in many ways. The process of telling the story is the same from script, storyboard, to then going into the action with filming or animating.

When writing a script for an animated explainer, it usually includes narration that sets the scene, introduces you to the main problem and solution. When writing a script for a narrative film like Waffle, the formatting is a bit different, but you are building the story in the same way by introducing characters, conflict, and creating a resolution.


When working with a team of filmmakers or a team of clients, communicating the vision and look of a film/video is extremely important.

We’ve written a few blog posts on Storyboarding and how we create them and use them for our animated explainer videos, but they are just as important in filmmaking.

It helps communicate to all the creative heads what the shot will look like from cinematography to lighting and staging for the actors.


There’s not a whole lot of filming in animated explainer videos, but you do press record when working with voice actors. When working with any actor - the script comes to life and the director steers the ship for how the actors do and say certain lines to be able to tell the whole story.

When directing voice actors for animated explainer videos, it’s always important to communicate with them as you would to an actor on set, giving descriptive directions concerning emotion, situational circumstances, and providing the right thematic elements to get them to perform in the way the story calls for.

Filming a live-action narrative film involves a lot of moving pieces - especially when one of your actors is a dog! In this Behind-the-Scenes video find out some of our stories filming the short film.


Editing for both animated explainers and narrative films is usually what takes the most time. It requires a lot of fine-tuning and can make or break a film/video. This is why revisions are so important. Getting constructive and creative feedback in the editing phase makes it easier for editors/animators to enhance each draft and get the final film/video to the “standing-ovation” stage.

In filmmaking and in animated explainers, not only are you editing each piece of the project together, but you are also editing the timing and pacing, a clear conflict and resolution, clear characters and environment, what emotions it creates in the viewers, and if the story is told completely.

Waffle is still in the editing phase of the process. We’re very eager to show you the final film but till then, enjoy this photo of our main star dressed as Santa!

black lab mix in santa clothes

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