Sermon Graphics: Don’t Just Sit There

This weekend my Pastor is talking about Don’t Just Sit There…Do Something. The premise of the message is we naturally seek comfort in our lives. But God wants us to get out of our comfort zone and do something that requires faith.

Here’s the title slide.
Don’t Just Sit There Title

Here’s the sermon slide.
Don’t just sit there sermon

It’s a simple design. The graphic came from iStockPhoto.com. And I just added the text. Font is Rosewood. And the title bar on the bottom was from an illustrator file I had from vecteezy.com

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October 26, 2007. Graphic Design. Leave a comment.

Eye Exam Sermon Graphics

Here’s the graphics we used last weekend. Topic was Everyone Needs an Eye Exam. The background is a gradient with a pattern brush. The phoroptor (yea that’s a big word) is from iStockphoto.com

Design was clean and easy during a hectic week. The blue for the title slides was too dark for our projectors. Didn’t give enough contrast between the background and the letters.

Title Slide:
Eye Exam Title

Sermon Slides:
eye-exam-sermon.jpg

October 24, 2007. Graphic Design. Leave a comment.

My Naked iPhone

I let my iPhone be a streaker for about a month. I couldn’t decide/ find a case/cover I liked for it. I’ve kept my cell phones in my front left pocket with nothing else in the pocket for years. So I wasn’t worried about it being scratched. I was more concerned about me dropping it as I pulled it from my pocket.

Anyway at one of my 3 trips to the Apple store last week I picked up this case from incase. I was hesitant to get a case because I really like the look of the phone. I was concerned about it sticking in my pocket like my iPod does. I really like using the dock to charge my phone. My fear of dropping the phone one. I really like the look and feel of the iPhone in this case. I gave up using the dock so I don’t remove the case which I read can get loose over time.

I also got a headphone adapter from Monster. I’ve found myself using my iPhone more and more to listen to music instead of my 5G iPod video. So now I can use my Shure e4 headphones. Down side is I have to pull the headphones out to talk on the phone. I was wanting to get the Shure phone adapter. But that would make for a really long headphone cable.

October 24, 2007. Tech Stuff. Leave a comment.

The Simple Things: Thomas Kemper Soda

Last year while visiting my family in California I discovered Thomas Kemper Ginger Ale. It’s a local soda from Seattle. You may laugh but this Ginger Ale is the bomb. This is not your normal ginger ale. It has a slight bite but a very smooth taste.

Anyway I found it along with some other great food at Central Market.

October 24, 2007. Random. Leave a comment.

ProVideoPlayer: How To Delete From A Playlist

Just wanted to post a quick update. Brad from Renewed Vision let me know how to delete a file from a playlist. Basically there are two ways:
-Command click on the clip(s) and click on the – button at the bottom of the window
-Option + Click + Delete

I’ve learned that the command button is the secret weapon in PVP and PP3. By command click and drag you can rearrange clips. You can command drag a background element to a foreground element to create a background cue. So when in doubt I’ll be command clicking to see what it does.

October 24, 2007. Tech Stuff. Leave a comment.

Goodbye Easy Worship. Hello ProPresenter

I’ve been using EasyWorship for a long time. At one point they were the only software that we knew of that would do text over video. We probably have 8 or so venues or rooms that are being powered by Easy Worship. Gotta love site licenses. It’s been a stable program but I’ve been frustrated by some of it’s shortcomings:

-No way to sort, organize or search backgrounds. We have around 800 motion loops not including stills so this can be a huge pain in the but.
-Edits in schedule are not automatically reflected in the database. I understand why you would want this, but it’s not the way I like to work.
-Editing a song takes way to many steps
-Goofy behavior when copying and pasting text. Text auto resizes. And returns are not always recognized.
-Video playback of foreground elements has never been stable. I think this has to do with the computer scaling the video up.
-Windows based.
-Can’t delete multiple files from the database or background bins.

I’ve been messing around with ProPresenter from Renewed Vision for awhile now. And I’ve been very impressed. I was waiting for a time to justify the switch and this plasma instal was just what I’ve been waiting for.

We played a game of musical macs.

We bought a new 20″ iMac to run ProPresenter. It’s the base model 2.0 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo, 1 GB Ram, 250 GB HD, ATI Radeon HD 2400 XT video card with 128 MB. Can I just say this is one good looking machine! The display is awesome. I loaded ProPresenter, our backgrounds (all 90GB of them) and our music sheets.

Our worship team keeps their music/lead sheets in txt files with song info and chord charts in {} or []. I used Text Wrangler to do a batch proccess GREP search to find any and all text between [] or {} and delete it. So now I have 2 folders. 1 with the music teams lead sheets so I know what part of the song is what. And I have a folder of cleaned up lyrics ready to import into ProPresenter.

We also bought a MacPro Two 2.66 Ghz Dual Core Xeon Processors, NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT graphics with 256MB memory
250GB and 1 GB Ram. But I added 8 GB of RAM from OWC and a 500 GB media drive. This MacPro will replace a Dual 2.0 Ghz G5 PowerMac in our media room. The G5 has been moved into the sanctuary to run ProVideoPlayer

Both ProVideoPlayer and ProPresenter were easy to setup on and get up and running. Most of the time was just spent on formating the song slides for this weekend. I wish they came with better documentation or a better quick start guide. It’s hidden in the help menu under features you need to know about. I design our sermon gfx in Photoshop so I used bridge to batch process them into JPEGs and import them as a presentation into ProPresenter.

ProPresenter:
+ I like being able to change background elements on the fly, either during a service or just to preview
+ Sorting my BKG elements into various bins (color and speed, high energy, theme etc…)
+ WYSIWYG editing of slides
+ Smooth transitions. I like it a .5 seconds
+ Simple click on what you want live. No having to fire a cue. Cuts out lots of extra clicks during a service.
+ Told an upgrade is on the way to add some other features.
+ Good as tape video playback via firewire output. I haven’t tried it but I’m going to. I have an old Sony firewire media converter that we used to use before we got a DSR-11.

ProVideo Player:
+ This program is the bomb!!!
+ Adjust the speed, hue, saturation, brightness and contrast on a global or individual basis
+ Group video clips
– I can’t figure how to delete a clip from a playlist without deleting it from the library. I have an email into Renewed Vision.

We got a module that allows ProVideoPlayer to control the background elements in ProPresenter. This is very cool. Basically you set up a playlist in each program. And when you click on an item in ProVideoPlayer it triggers a background item in ProPresenter. Example if each playlist as 5 items. When you click on the 3rd item in PVP it triggers the 3rd item in PP3. Very cool and easy

Well I think this post is getting long enough. I’m sure I’ll have some more thoughts
-dave

October 22, 2007. Tech Stuff. 11 comments.

Plamsa Install

One of the projects I’ve been working on over the last few weeks was to install a few plasmas on our stage. We wanted to get rid of the fake plants we had. We also wanted to add some color to the stage. Here’s a picture from my phone.

Plasma Install

Overall I’m happy with how the project came out. I’m not 100% happy with the location of the upper plasma. I also don’t have a workflow and system setup for how we are playing the content out to the plasmas. We’ve had one person run Easy Worship, light cues and video playback. We don’t do a lot of video or light changes so that’s been fine. I don’t like having to add another computer for that person to have to make changes on for the plasmas. I need to find a way to automate this or find space in my booth for another person.

If you really want to get into the details..
-The plasmas are 50″ vizios that we spray painted the bottom to get rid of the silver speaker cover. Wonder if that’ll void the warranty?
-Main screens are run by Easy Worship. Our backgrounds are from Digital Juice and 12″ Designs.
-Plasmas were fed from my Mac Book Pro running a program called QLab.
-Interesting thing Quicktime has a problem looping MPEG 1 or MPEG 2 videos. I used MOV files with the NTSC compression.

I’m looking into ProPresenter and Pro Video Player from Renewed Vision. I’ll let you know more as we work on how to control these screens.

October 15, 2007. Tech Stuff. 2 comments.

Mind Games Week 3

Here’s the video we showed this weekend. Pretty much the same as week 2. I just changed the last 15-20 seconds to tie it into this weeks message.

October 15, 2007. Video. Leave a comment.

Mind Games Week 2

We had our second week of Mind Games. I have to saw it’s nice to have a series that I really like the graphics I did. Here’s the second video we showed. The first minute is identical to week 1. But I tightened up the animation. Most the movements are in 4 to 7 frames instead of 20. From this week I think some of the sound fx were too low. I’ll tweak them this week. I’ll change the brain teaser and the tag (where the couple is arguing) to fit next week’s message.

October 8, 2007. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

How Much Time Is Too Much Time

Like I said in my last post I got a lot of positive feedback from the video. But I ran out of time to include more content. I cut about half of the script I have.

I know I have a tendency to focus on working out a technical or artistic detail that 95% of people won’t notice. When I first was learning to edit video it was painfully slow. I remember it would take my almost 4 hours to edit 1 minute of video. Some of it was learning the program. Some of it was learning the basic fundamentals of editing. Some of it was learning how to handle the technical difficulties that always arise.

Motion Graphics is much more time intensive than video editing. Both in the learning curve of the program (After Effects), creative use of the tools and in the time it takes to pull of a project. A motion graphics project by it’s nature is more complex.

So how much time is too much time to spend on a project? This Mind Game project I spent about 25 hours on a 1 minute and 15 second spot. That was writing the script, searching for the elements and animating. I don’t know how much of my time spent on this project was due to: 85% of the time I spent on this I was not able to focus, deciding on a creative decision, I don’t know AE as well as I know Final Cut Pro.

But did the extra animation I put in add that much more to the project? If I would have set up the scenes and use a transition between each scene compared to animating the red bar around, would it have hurt the project? It would have cut my time down to about 10 hours instead of 25?

These are just my thought process. I need to make sure I’m being a good steward of my time since I’m the only media guy at my church.

October 2, 2007. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

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