Concept development is a broad area of creative arts but generally refers to the planning process of creating the design (both aesthetic and functional) of space, service, digital property, or cultural experience. However, creating the perfect concept isn’t quite as simple as its definition. The perfect concept is out there, but claiming it is going to succeed will mean a higher degree of patience and a whole lot of hard work. In filmmaking, concept development is almost always a hybrid of art and science. As such, there are rules that must be followed. But beyond those, the possibilities are limitless.
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Before arriving at the “perfect” concept, one must learn what the rules are. The first rule is that there should only be one benefit per concept. Thinking about arriving with multiple benefits will only make the concept ambiguous. Second, the description should clearly describe the idea behind it. The rule is that the audience must be able to picture what it entails even without an image. For example, a short video promoting a restaurant may focus on how and where the ingredients are sourced from instead of showing the dish itself. This way, customers can have a mental experience of how fresh, rich, and flavorful the product is.
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Another thing to consider is starting out with a killer insight. It should be a compelling belief (e.g. why organic farming is better than conventional agriculture), a perceived truth about the principles of the main subject (e.g. a celebrity endorsing a skincare brand), and a state of being that the audience can relate to (e.g. capitalizing on fads and crazes while developing a new trend). It must motivate the target audience to believe that they will be able to actually get what the idea is trying to promote or convey. Finally, editing is essential. Do not get complacent on editing and never cut corners during this phase.
Steven Sorensen’s the name. I’m a freelance photographer and independent filmmaker from Manhattan, New York. I used to work in production for television commercials but soon decided to do things my way, and so far, life’s never been happier. See you on Twitter.