Engaging Storytelling with Scroll-Triggered Techniques

The Challenge

The Telegraph's Product team aimed to find more captivating methods for storytelling. Their journalists possess compelling stories and outstanding photography; however, some narratives demanded a bespoke approach to highlight their unique aspects.

Assigned to collaborate with a designer, my task involved devising innovative methods to present traditional article content, considering the limitations of the existing Content Management System (CMS).


The optimal strategy involved authoring content as usual within the CMS, but enriching it with animations and style enhancements. This approach allowed editorial staff to maintain their standard workflow, while facilitating seamless integration of my modifications in future CMS updates.

A key objective was to enhance the visibility of imagery in articles. To achieve this, I employed a mix of grid-template-columns overrides and position: sticky, along with the IntersectionObserver() API. This technique utilized the entire viewport, ensuring images remained visible as users scrolled.

Determining the right animations required careful consideration of factors like duration, easing functions, and trigger points. These elements significantly influenced the content's tone, ranging from a somber feel with slow easing transitions to a more dynamic atmosphere with exponential curves. The most effective method for selecting appropriate values involved hands-on experimentation. Therefore, I developed an editor that allowed designers to test various settings.

Screenshot of in-browser editor
The in-browser editor enabled real-time experimentation.

The project "One Year Look Back at Covid Lockdown" was the inaugural initiative to utilize this tool. It featured transitioning photography with overlaid text, providing context to the images as they scrolled past.

Readers responded positively, appreciating the enhanced focus on imagery juxtaposed with emotionally resonant writing, and commended the inventive approach to a sensitive topic.

Project skills