First of all, we definitely don’t know it all. We have learned a bunch over the years, going from one video director to a team of almost 15. But we’re still learning and wrestling with new problems and old tensions everyday. And we love it! Below is an attempt to answer some questions that are often asked about our team and processes. Our hope is not that you see a team that has all the answers, but a team that wants to share our current processes, even as they are still evolving. We are extremely blessed to be able to do what we get to do.
Our primary responsibility are our contributions to the Sunday morning content. That includes video production (the TenBefore, Title Packages/Speaker Bumpers, special videos, etc.), graphic design (printed bulletins, computer graphics, etc.) and exporting that content afterward (DVD products, Strategic Partner exports, Your Move with Andy Stanley, etc.). For the most part, we don’t do anything live for the service, our team’s responsibilities are mainly pre-production and post-production.
Check out our team page to learn more about how we’re organized and who works on what kinds of projects.
The TenBefore is a 5–10 minute video that currently plays right before each service begins at our five churches. It is our way of taking the announcements OUT of the service and presenting them in a unique way. We want the TenBefore to do one thing really well, and that is to make people feel welcomed and comfortable as they start the service. It helps us communicate our mission statement, direct people to great next steps, and promote important events and environments around our churches.
The basic structure of the TenBefore can be broken down into three sections:
- Opening Host segment (Intro — Mission Statement — Info about about an environment)
- Commercial section (these are videos made by our team to promote upcoming events, tease a new series, or just make everyone laugh)
- Closing Host segment (Next Step Info: NEXT, Starting Point, Today’s Speaker/Current Series, website info, Recap, etc.)
We export five different versions of the TenBefore every week, one for each of our churches. We shoot our host segments once a month—sometimes in a green screen studio, sometimes on a physical location. Right now we’re rotating hosts each month between several professional actors, most of whom attend one of our churches.
No. Most of us work Monday through Friday. However, we always at least two people in the office every Sunday: one export guy, (Ryan or Cory) to make sure we record all the service content and one other media staff member, just in case there are any last-minute changes or problems.
No. We focus mainly on the Sunday morning service environment or “big church”. Most of the other departments have their own media person, or contract out their projects. If a ministry is promoting something in the TenBefore, or in the main service, we will work with them to strategize and execute the piece. But if a ministry needs a video that is not a part of Sunday morning, then media does not handle it (most of the time).
Yes. We hand out bulletins on most Sundays, but to save on printing costs, we now print one bulletin for each church every 2–3 weeks. They are designed to match our series artwork and cover upcoming events and opportunities.
The individual churches each have video directors and producers that are extremely talented. Not only do they handle all the live event production, but they also coordinate shooting baptism videos for their church. Media works together and at times separate from these guys depending on what the needs of each campus are. In general, Media is responsible for the look and feel of a series. If the campuses do a series that is different, more times than not, they will take the lead in creative, and media will support as best we can. It is all very fluid and changes with the needs and workloads of the individual campuses.
We do all our work on Macs throughout almost the entire church. Specifically in media we use Adobe CS programs (Premiere, After Effects, Photoshop, InDesign, etc.), Cinema4D, and ProTools in our studio.
The camera of choice for our shooters is the Canon 5D Mark III. We don’t currently own one, but we have really enjoyed renting it. We’re always doing research into different cameras and video equipment to try to get the best quality we can for our money.
Absolutely. It seems like there’s always more work to be done than people to do it, so we love finding reliable and affordable contracts to help us out. It’s especially important to us as we strive to make excellent products, but also understand the importance of family and balance between work and home. Contracting out people also challenges us, gives us a different perspective, and makes us better.