Wednesday, December 28, 2016

creating Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you still reading my blog!  I haven't been writing, again!

This morning I've had time to think back over Christmas@Crossroads and realized again that creating involves layers of work, an idea doesn't just happen - first the concept;
Amazing CREATIVE TEAM: Dan Fleming - Head Worship Leader; Jocelyn Nicolas - Asst. Worship leader/
Asst. Creative Arts Leader; Lori Biddle -  Creative Arts Director; Aaron Nicolas - Young Adult Pastor
& Front of House Sound Engineer; Lead Pastor Dave Vance; Eric Biddle - Creative Arts Specialist;
Arnie Clawson - Technical Director;
(not pictured)  Milo Sgambellone - Asst. Worship Leader and Brandon Magers - Multi-Media Coordinator
after the concept, second is developing the idea into music that supports the movement through the story; working on every single transition between songs and videos; storyboarding video shoots; meeting on locations with all the supplies to shoot; experimenting this year with lit steel wool spinning and sparklers to create one of the videos; editing videos; creating a stage layout so the team can set the stage; creating the icon for advertising; multiple rehearsals; organizing meals for rehearsals and performances; choosing clothing for the singers/musicians; recruiting the Crossroads Artist Group to help hang everything in our lobby and asking a close friend to create the picture taking backgrounds, everything making sure that we flow toward Pastor Dave's messages; advertising; and now, major clean-up!

Re-aiming lights and setting up platforms - step #1 on the stage
I cannot remember the last day I got to wake up and read and think without a current deadline looming over me!  That's just the nature of my job - to create and finish well so everyone else can do their job. I was very stressed at one point the week leading up to the performances and realized it was the point in the process when I no longer had ANY control - the process had physically begun, so I finally just released it to the Lord and fell back in love with it again!

Pastor Dave and I are already discussing next Christmas and we may have the theme, I'll know for sure after we develop the concept just a little bit further.  That would allow us to plan a summer shoot that would resemble the climate Jesus was born in.  Making the service as true to the story as possible.

This year's Christmas@Crossroads was the most original video work we've ever done, and I loved every minute of it!  In fact I'm pretty sure that the moving background on the worship songs clear at the end of the service, was the only thing we purchased!  So we're making progress!!

One of our favorite concepts was shooting forward moving video and then using a treadmill to make it look like 'Ruth' was walking!

A big shout-out to all the videos in which
Mya Taylor portrayed Ruth!

Even though creating Christmas is a whole lot of work, perhaps the most difficult thing about creating is to release that concept to others.

When you own an idea and have 'stewed' over it for so long, you form a tight concept for what everything should look like and sound like.  But, as you invite others into the process you have to consider their ideas and play to their strengths.  That's where covering everything with prayer and trust comes into play.

As I stood back and watched what the worship staff, musicians, technical staff and Pastor Dave's messages' brought to Christmas, I praised the Lord for such talent and dedication!  I watched as their ideas brought more depth and creative expression to the services and was so thankful to be at Crossroads where we have such creative freedom!

I'm pretty pumped that IKEA is coming to Columbus -
the stars were a hit!

I talked to several staff members who got to minister to those who stayed after the services to pray and I rejoiced as they had this honor.  These decisions or prayers to the Lord, and the richness that the service brought to families that just want to keep Christ first,  paid huge dividends and reminded us once again - this is why we do our jobs!

My on-going prayer is that our work brings additional dimension to the services we create, not changing the message, but adding visual and technical support that helps you remember what's being taught!

Hide God's word deeply in your souls - and thank you for allowing us to be part of your lives!

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