Tuesday, May 31, 2011

no diagonals again...

Well, here is "tweek" two of Isaiah.
Didn't use diagonal hanging again.
We will see what happens for "tweek" three.
I must say I enjoy the effect of the lamps, when the house and bands lights are low.

Here is week one for comparison.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Simple. Acts = Holy Spirit

Completely created with safety pins, fishing line and cloth.

Friday, May 27, 2011

stepping back into winter…

I got sidetracked with blogging stage designs earlier this year. So much going on, but now it’s time to back track and fill in the gaps.
The series was entitled “The Kingdom”. As the story goes: the Israelites wanted God to give them an earthly king. God said “O.k.” Always remember to be careful what you ask/pray for.
The story ambles through the prophet Samuel, King Saul, King David & Absalom and more.
First two weeks of 1st & 2nd Samuel, 1st & 2nd Kings, 1st & 2nd Chronicles stage design are captured here.
Now, the last two weeks.

Within a mini-series, I will often use the same materials. But, particularly since we are a mobile church and load in and out completely each week: I tend to tweak the stage design each week within a series.

The third week’s design focused on remembering to praise God. King David was a man of many faults. But one of the things that defined David as a great leader was he accepted responsibility and remembered to praise God.
For this week, the stage design was a continuation of the crown. We added in a interactive element, where we encouraged people to re-focus on praising God. It was simple. A large piece of foam-core, with sticky notes for people to write on. We also created a space for creative people to draw or write on a large piece of paper taped to the floor. The speaking pastor also used props during his message. I always enjoy that.

Fourth week: the destruction off the Kingdom. The nation of Israel was destroyed, divided.
There seemed to be no choice but the take the crown and literally cut it up into pieces and hung it up again. This set of designs was fun for me creatively. To be able to capture the rise and fall of the nation of Israel through coroplast & cloth was exciting.

Side note: I highly recommend reading “Tale of Three Kings”, A study on brokenness (Gene Edwards). It is an amazing book on brokenness. If you have ever been hurt, broken, shattered by church, you will learn a lot from reading this book.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

complete idiot’s guide to fishing line = fiasco

Or literally “oh, snap”.
Most every stage design at XC is created with fishing line, griff clips or safety pins. These are our basic tools.
This week (Isaiah) I asked my husband if I could have “some” fishing line. What he gave me was .009 in. line, which I assume is fly line (use to create fishing lure flies). Well, what I failed to mention was that I needed a heavy test (weight) line. Generally I use 200 lb. plus in stage designing. My bad. Did some shuffling, people were contacted (thank you to some of the manly men at church) and still didn't get what I needed on time.
So the “diagonal” portions of the design didn’t go up this week.
This is what the stage looked like this week.

The lamps and red end tables are from Ikea.
The diagonal pieces are items I got from Starbucks. What you see mid-way in the slide show is from a design last year. They will be used this coming week.

We are in Isaiah for three weeks. I will use variations of this set design for two more weeks.

Lesson Learned: Remember to be more detailed when asking for something.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

if you don't get it, you don't get it...

Do you get it?
Fascinating discussion yesterday via facebook message and real time convo about QR (Quick Response) codes. Basically a QR code is a matrix bar coded with information stated by a "link" that can be snapped and captured by a reader (eg. cell phone) to receive information.
It fits right into a theory I developed several years ago. It's a demographic tag that crosses It isn’t defined by age/generation . It is defined by technology and mindset.

GEND Simply stated you either are digitally connected or not. You either get it or you don’t get it. This digitally enhanced/enabled media is re-defining the boundaries on how various social groups and generations interface with each other.
So how does play into what I do? The results of polling a multi-generational group (ages 24-54) of about 12 people:  the results showed age had NOTHING to do with who knew about QR codes. The interesting thing was, when it was explained almost everyone knew what we were talking about, they had "seen" it-then they got it.
So we started brainstorming and will are going to use a QR code linked to a message about Ezekiel. What was "seen" by Ezekiel didn't make a lot of sense until you understand what was in the message.
Looking forward to this one.

Monday, May 16, 2011

oh, no...a bikini top

This week is about stage design bloopers. Sometimes you get a lot more than you bargained for when you stand back and look at a stage design.
The scenario: I was producing and the only one working on the stage design. It makes for a very busy Sunday morning.
I quickly put the stage design up. Stood back and someone said "oh, it looks like a bikini top."
Now, in the scope of things a bikini top appearing in the stage design isn't too bad. Just not needed. It could be a distraction for some. So, it was a quick fix. I generally have extra bolts of cloth with me in my car. I just pulled some out, added an extra "swoosh". Problem solved.

Lesson Learned: "Always check with others". I know this one. Been there, done that before. If you've done any design work at all-you know that you have to be on the look out for: how shall I say this delicately? Unintended random body parts.

I think the funniest one was when the initial design looked like an uncircumcised (Philistine) body part. So glad somebody noticed THAT week!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

His ways are not our ways...

I recently revealed how much of creative stage design is work and some is just thinking & vapor…
Well this week, I had NOTHING. Absolutely NOTHING. Seriously, I read the appropriate scriptures, studied, prayed, thought...NOTHING.
Finally, I just gave up. That's right. Gave-up. I notified the Sunday morning team, I wouldn't have a stage design and would just be there for church. Hey, it was even Mother's Day. I enjoyed not having to get up at 5:00 to head in for load-in and set-up.
So, I walk into church, sat with my family, worshipped, kicked back to listen to the sermon...
then saw this...

Then I understood. (Sorry the pic to so bad. Used my really old cell phone).
There needed to NOT be a stage design this week. The entire focus was on those five music stands, with the words EVENT, UNDERSTANDING, BELIEFS, ACTION, OUTCOME.
Of course, it fit perfectly with the message. Revealing the Relevant Word: Proverbs.
Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.

I wish I could say I had the wisdom to understand what was happening beforehand. I didn't. But, I did simply trust. I didn't try to force a stage design. Lesson learned.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

blessing of thorns...

A giant stem of a rose, hanging all by itself at the back of the stage and the actually flower of the rose hanging far away, drooping. You call this a blessing?
You want a massive challenge?
At CrossCurrent, we have been reading through the entire Bible in a year.
In our creative process, when we are creating elements for the message each week, we are usually planning at least six weeks out. We agreed to read ahead, keep it up and pray about what we should do for a creative element each week.
May 1st, was Psalms 135-150.
When I was reading the scriptures for this week, I was also doing a little researching online, which I frequently do. Somehow I wound up at my previous denominations website and found a story turned into a drama entitled "Blessing of Thorns"

It just seemed to speak exactly to where David's heart was when he was writing these Psalm's. We didn't so the drama, it is really more of a story built around Thanksgiving; but the thought really worked.
So, this is what I did for the stage this week.

I made a giant rose and leaves out of  red and green tissue paper. Then I took two tubes from wrapping paper, and wrapped green floral tape around then and built in large cardboard thorns along the stem.
It sounded like a simple idea, but man, implementation was lot harder than I expected.
If you care to read the story, this is the link to the pdf online: http://www.discipleshomemissions.org/files/DW-GP-BlessingOfThorns.pdf. It is actually worth the read.
Oh well, live and learn.