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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old September 25th, 2007, 04:00 PM   #1
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The 'Church Video People' thread

I shoot and edit video for my church, and curious if there are others here who do the same.

Right now we're using two Canon XL1's with stock auto lenses, feeding s-video to an ancient Videonics MX-100 switcher. Then it goes into an ATI TV Wonder in a Vista PC running a dual-core AMD X2 4400. Windows Media Encoder 9 hums along -- it'd give smoother quality if we ran two-pass, but so many are waiting for the taped services Sunday morning we go straight thru the encoder (many of our members work for the airlines). Amazingly, this Circuit City bargain PC keeps up without a hiccup.

The main sanctuary is DARK. Lights are waaaaaay up in the rafters and a single strip of 24 cans light the stage haphazardly. It's so far up there, I'm scared to try on a ladder. It's THAT high.

The cameras are at the very back of the building, so we're shooting at full zoom on tight, and wide on B-cam. I've got gain pushed to +12 just to make out faint details, and the iris wide open. Highlights blow out all the time, the pastor's got raccoon eyes and -- gee, aside from the lighting, and a busted 16xAuto that can't stay focused, it's pretty good...could be worse...

Ya'll can see what I'm talking about here:
http://church.newcc.org/sermons/Dyna...SermonList.asp

ANybody else here 'shoot the preacher' on Sundays?
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Old September 25th, 2007, 04:54 PM   #2
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Ted,

There's a site and forum dedicated to it and the issues involved - not that the principles don't apply to all kinds of production situations

http://www.churchmedia.net
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Old September 26th, 2007, 07:02 AM   #3
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budget church people

Heya,

Well, i am really resistant to imag in church. It always feels like it overstates the importance of the minister. But there are key times when its really nice. Up until a few months ago, there was a crusty pc next to the sound board playing powerpoints and if they wanted to switch to any video, it was plugged directly into the projector and switched by cycling the input source on the projector remote. (uggggh!)

I purchased and donated a copy of liveworship and pitched in half an intel imac . It has made amazing changes to the multimedia and flow of the service. While the software is really designed for existing media playback, I plumbed a sony fx1 to the imac via a long fw cable and the slide operator has the option to switch live to the feed, and even key text over the live video from within the liveworship software.

So... a pathetic setup compared to your megachurch, but I thought it was a pretty cool solution for imag on the cheap.

One sunday i spit the output of the whole lot to a darwin live streaming server so some family overseas could watch a baby dedication. It worked like a champ until the congregation arrived, then for some reason there was so much RF interference that the wifi network shut down entirely. Doh! I guess people carry around more pocket electronics than i ever would have imagined. It wasnt a major loss as I still videotaped the event and went into the office and streamed it immediately after it was over.

Thanks for the thread. Good to know there are more church video geeks out there.
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Old September 26th, 2007, 02:00 PM   #4
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Yep. We burn a DVD, and put it on local access. Mostly consumer level hardware, and castoffs donated by a member in the event production business. 32 channel soundboard, 4 channel NTSC switcher, Panasonic mini-dv cameras outputting via 1/8" video jack.
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Old September 26th, 2007, 10:39 PM   #5
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I too am a "church video geek". I'm pretty new to all of this so most of what you all are saying about your equiptment is pretty well flying right over my head.

I use a 3yr old Sony MiniDV camcorder which I edit everything on my personal Toshiba laptop. Our board is I think a 20 channel something or other. I'm trying to record the audio directly to a digital recorder to add to the video to remove alot of background noise.



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Old October 1st, 2007, 11:22 AM   #6
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Shooting both of them (pastors)

We have one Sony Z1U and someone comes with his FX1; an old consumer Sony is for general wide shots only as it has poor resolution (hopefully we get money for a second Z1 this fall). These three cameras feed into a Datavideo SE-800 switcher, sound coming from the audio board. The output goes to a PC for live streaming in Windows Media format on our website www.atlantanorthchurch.com, to a direct DVD recorder for on the spot DVD creation, and in the future to another PC for post editing. Video is monitored on Sony professional studio monitors.

A second PC runs Easy Worship for Bible text/song lyrics/Powerpoint/DVD presentations; members watch the projector, the speaker and those on the platform can look at the 37 inch LCD at the back of the sanctuary. The sattelite receiver can also be routed into the switcher and the projector/LCD. A third PC running Adobe Audition records multitrack audio via an Alesis firewire audio board but only when we have musical presentations.

Personally I would also welcome a sub-forum for church video related topics. I've been on some other fora but been turned off by the unprofessionalism, slow loading speed due to useless graphics, excessively complicated navigation, etc. There are issues that do make the subject of THIS website, as they are strictly digital video related and would be nice to find answers right here, all in the same place.
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Old October 1st, 2007, 12:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Personally I would also welcome a sub-forum for church video related topics.
The reason why I resist such a dedicated sub-forum here is pretty much the same reason that I gave several years ago to some folks who asked for a sub-forum tailored to adult video and sexually explicit content, and that is: other than the subject matter, there really isn't anything inherently different about the production. Shooting a religious service in a sanctuary faces most all of the same production issues as shooting in a theater, a concert hall or other similar venues. That's why we've lumped all of these event production topics into one big forum for Wedding and Event Videography (to which this thread has been now been moved).

As you've already noted, DV Info Net is indeed a safe, protected space in which professionalism always trumps profanity and vulgarity. And as long as I own this site, it'll always be that way.

While I'm not opposed to eventually adding a sub-forum within our Event Videography section dealing specifically with low lighting levels in sanctuary spaces (that is, should the forum traffic ever warrant it), the word "church" most likely would not be in the title, since it would seem by definition to exclude those folks facing these exact same issues, but instead are shooting video in a temple or a mosque or some other spiritual space; and such exclusions do not at all rest easy with me.

For the moment, I'm satisfied that our Event Videography forum is perfectly suited for these particular types of production issues and I warmly welcome such discussions here, especially those matters that are unique to services of *all* faiths, whether Islamic, Hindu, Jewish, etc., as long as they're *technically* related.

Hope this helps,
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Old October 1st, 2007, 01:42 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Chris Hurd View Post
The reason why I resist such a dedicated sub-forum here is pretty much the same reason that I gave several years ago to some folks who asked for a sub-forum tailored to adult video and sexually explicit content, and that is: other than the subject matter, there really isn't anything inherently different about the production.
Hope this helps,
That's a very well thoughout reason. I've done church video, infact this is how we started, and 'technically' you could be talking about the lighting, shot selection, angles, without even mentioning church and come to the same conclusions. But if you are talking about the business side of church video, that's an animal all to its own, at least in my experience. Kudos Chris, that made a lot of sense.


Although, I would not mind having a sub forum for us Elvis fans. But that's another story.
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Old October 1st, 2007, 02:15 PM   #9
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chur video is usualy a perminant install. so thats a pretty difrent aproach. allso a big issue for church vidoe is verry fast turnaround. and third it sadly often has to be as simple as posible because of volinteers that have verry limited knowledge.
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Old October 1st, 2007, 07:05 PM   #10
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Good to meet some fellow church media people. I operate the media department at our church as well..... using Media Shout, PC, video projector and hoping to get a digital recorder to run camera into.

Best,
Lisa
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Old October 1st, 2007, 07:16 PM   #11
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I do videos for my church. Mostly promo videos for different ministries and less and less lately as I have been swamped with weddings.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 07:29 AM   #12
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same here I have been so bussy lately that i havnt been able to do hardly anything. but im going to work on a comercial soon.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 11:04 AM   #13
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Hi,

I finished a commercial recently and a video for Teddies for Tots organization. I have a client asking me to do a wedding but it's been awhile since I did weddings and not my favorite projects to work on.

I prefer commercials ad trying to put a marketing plan together to find some business.

I've been working on missions trips and church videos, etc. but like I mentioned, I'm working on trying to find ways to market to get the video business going full time. My uncle is in another state and he is always busy with wedding still photography and videos.

I really need to get some video lights. I've been reading how some people have been making their own kits from worklights. I need to use some lights for a couple of projects and then I'll put out the money to buy a kit and some wireless lapel mics. Someone gave me a lapel mic that was in storage but it's missing a part.

Anyway, got to run and that's my 2 cents for now I guess.

Till Later,
Lisa
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 11:29 AM   #14
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I'm also involved with church videos and the like, though I wouldn't say it's all I do. I was recently hired by a church to do a documentary for them, and also asked me to do a short set of children's videos 'Fruity Fables' for their family Sundays. Needless to say they are keeping me busy.

Below is a link to a youtube account I set up to post some of the work I'm doing for them. You can see the fruit video and some clips from the doc too.

http://www.youtube.com/elknib
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 12:20 PM   #15
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Just curious...how many of you that are involved in your churches media department have thought of using robotic video cameras?
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