Pre-Production: Ladapaw Letters

Newsletter 1 Storyboard

When I began my design career, I was surprised that creativity wasn’t the center of all of it. Being technical is a large part of the process, if not to say at least half of it. 

Pre-production is technical. It’s the gathering of research, planning, and organizing that makes the project come to a whole. To go into a project without drafting content, scheduling locations, times, materials, and so much more is setting it up for failure. 


This week, I created and distributed a survey to help me better understand what my audience is truly interested in. The survey was short and to the point – letting the users effectively communicate their wants. 

Additionally, the survey was a way to gather emails as my first group of audience members for the newsletters. 

I’ll now dig into what the questions were and the responses they got. 

Question 1:

“Ladapaw Letters is a bi-weekly email newsletter that informs the recipients about individual aspects of pet adoption. The concept will bring to attention statistics, details, and helpful tips focused on rescuing animals. Each newsletter will have a different topic – specific and based heavily on research, i.e. training a timid [recently adopted] dog or the benefits and


Yes = 11

No = 0

Maybe (please specify) = 2

  • I am not in a position to adopt an animal
  • Rescuing self propagates puppy mills

Question 2:

“Out of these topics, which, if any, interests you? (select all that apply)

  • General adoption facts & statistics
  • General fostering facts & statistics
  • Puppy mills – what are they and how do they work?
  • Shelters – what are they and how do they work?
  • Rescues – what are they and how do they work?
  • Things to expect when adopting pets
  • Things to expect when fostering pets
  • Food health
  • Basic training
  • Rescues vs purebred vs “purebred” rescues. 

Are any topics missing? Is there any specific topic you’d like to learn more about?”



  • Preparation for adoption/fostering; Consideration for success on your first adoption/foster; Challenges/Success when handling your first adoption/foster
  • I can’t think of anything else
  • What about telling a specific story of someone who’s adopted a pet and their experience?

Question 3:

“Ladapaw Letters may expand to display its newsletters on an additional platform than email. Is email a good way to reach you? Would you prefer viewing your newsletters a different way, like a Facebook page or Instagram account?”


  • Email works just fine for me! = 10
  • I don’t really look at my email, but I will for Ladapaw Letters. = 1
  • I’d rather see the newsletters somewhere other than my email. = 2

Final Parting:

“If you feel ready to start receiving emailed newsletters from Ladapaw Letters, please enter your email address here. Thank you for your time!”


11 emails out of 13 responses. 

With the results came a few surprises. I was a little bit shocked to see that food health was one of the least-liked topics of the ones listed, although it is the topic that appears to be the least related to rescue. Food head is a broad topic, but can be directly related to animal adoption. 

I was also surprised to see a comment in the first “maybe” section of the question – “rescuing self propagates puppy mills.” But, this is exactly the reason why we need more awareness on the subject – to break false stigmas. Receiving this answer helped me to add a potential newsletter topic called false “stigmas of rescuing.”

Ladapaw Letters Pre-Production

On top of my additional research, I defined each of the three newsletters that I plan to create within the next few weeks. This includes the topic, information, and resources, developing a draft outline, storyboarding, and planning the animations. 

Pre-Production Tasks – same list for all three newsletters


From a deeper understanding after more research and the survey, I chose the three topics I’d use for the three newsletters:

  1. General adoption facts & stats
  2. Rescues – what are they and how do they work?
  3. Rescues vs purebred, vs purebred rescues. 

While two of the three topics listed were not the highest-rated topics (but a close second), I had to think about what kind of order of operations would make the most sense for the newsletter – particularly at the beginning. Beyond these three newsletters, the fourth one would be things to expect when adopting pets, and the fifth would be basic training. This order of topics allows a smooth transition from one to the other. 


The outlines for each of the three newsletters use color-coded references so that I can easily cite back to the source of each. Within the outlines, I wrote out specific details that pertain to the topic – that I will then rewrite into my written content during production starting next week. 

Storyboard with Animation Planning

Storyboards are a great way to visually illustrate what happens within each frame – something that’s commonly used for video planning or motion graphics. Because the newsletters are animated, it was appropriate for me to create a storyboard with planned animations for each newsletter.

Newsletter 1 Storyboard – Pet Adoption
Newsletter 2 Storyboard – Rescues
Newsletter 3 Storyboard – Rescues vs purebred vs purebred rescues

I fully expect that these will change as I get to the production stage throughout the next few weeks. As the written content is finalized, and I go to Adobe After Effects to begin animating, there’s no doubt I’ll come across details that require modification for a better outcome. Either way, the storyboards are going to be a valuable resource for me to reference when I get to the animations. We’ll see when I get there!

Email Content

Lastly, I’ve written the draft email content for each of the three newsletters which include the subject and body paragraph. During post-production, I will edit these for the final content and send them out. 

This week proved to be a ton of technical planning with my pre-production tasks! And with that, I feel very organized and READY for the creation of each newsletter. Next week is production for newsletter 1 – pet adoption – looking forward to it!

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