Church Communications resources and tips from Justin Dean

Developing the Theme

Christ?s Church of the Valley?s Easter theme was ?I Am the Greatest?. It was the culmination of a five-week series called The Fighter, so their Easter services used the same visuals.

The series idea lent itself to some pretty great ideas?with a lot of different options. The CCV team knew they wanted to go pretty manly with the look.

One of CCV?s main ministry philosophies is to reach men. They know that by reaching the men in their congregation, they can also reach the whole family.

So the idea they decided on for the design was a retro boxing look. They took a lot of inspiration from old boxing posters?using a lot of warm tones and colors. Stars and stripes are such an iconic look for the vintage boxing poster look, so they spread those visuals through everything they did. That included the lighting, bulletin covers, walk-in looks on the screens, lower-thirds visuals on video, handouts, invite cards, and communion slides (during the time of meditation).

The Stage Design

They also mirrored their series look for their stage design at all three campuses. Cameron Smith, the Media Arts Team Leader, designed the series art for ?The Fighter?. They sent that art to a vendor that printed large format cloth banners. For their main campus, they ordered a 25-foot by 44-foot printed cloth banner that covered the entire length of their stage.

They hung the banner on their back wall and lit it with strip lights and moving lights from a truss arch that surrounded the banner. They used the strip lights as gentle audience blinders and to create chase effects around the banner?in order to mirror the look of an old promoted boxing night.

Location Scouting

Early on in their planning they knew they wanted to shoot a couple videos to use during the service. One video was a slam poetry, spoken word video that they wanted to take place in a vintage boxing ring. The second video was a bumper video where they needed some b-roll of a boxing gym to use between photos they planned to feature.

So they got online and began looking for local boxing gyms. Cameron and another video producer scouted a few before they found the perfect one. While the others were more modern gyms?MMA style?the one they chose was very retro. It was even a bit weird. The boxing gym they found in downtown Phoenix was also a bar, a restaurant, and a clothing store. They had an upright piano in the room as well as bleachers. Very random. But it had the precise retro, old-school feel they were going for.

They rented out the location and filmed both the spoken word piece and the b-roll footage of the gym in one night.

All of these elements combined to create a great theme that reinforced the messages and themes of the series?ultimately leading up to Easter and declaring Jesus as the greatest.

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