Great ideas take planning and preparation, but sometimes the best ideas come out of desperation. That was the scenario with the video team this week.  We were told a week prior that the band would be closing out our sermon series with a song by Nichole Nordeman called Legacy.  It’s an awesome song, and we tried and tried to come up with a concept for something to do visually to accompany the song and kept coming up empty handed.

Wednesday afternoon week of (gulp), I remembered a vignette I had seen a few years ago about a Roman cross builder, and started recalling how cool it looked seeing someone building a cross.  I had a clear picture in my head of the shots and images that I would like to see if we made a video adaptation. Armed with this concept I sought out our Video Producer, Josh, and pitched my thoughts to him, and we discussed it for a while until we were both sure that we had the same images in our heads.  The main thing was coming up with a way to tie this concept to the song, we both really loved the idea, but neither of us could come up with a way to tie in a cross being built to legacy. A few hours later it hit me, it literally just came to me… WE are Jesus’ legacy, and THAT was the the tie-in. FYI, I am not theologian enough to come up with that on my own, if you are pickin up what I am puttin down.

First thing the next morning (T-minus 1 1/2 day to air), we went and found the props; axe, chisel, hammer.  Then we went to a lumber yard to look for rough wood.  We settled on split rail fence posts… for a couple of reasons; 1) they were rough looking and 2) they had notches pretty much pre-cut into them.  The plus and minus on that was our talent didn’t have near as much work to do as it looked like, but we had to shot around them in the establishing shots, as you can see below.

To set up the area for the shoot we got some black fabric from our props closet and then some black fabric covered pipe and drape stands.  We basically got as much black fabric as we could and covered the saw horses and the floor, then used the pipe and drape to block the windows in the room.  After that is was all down to shooting. Gear for this shoot included 2 canon 7D’s, one with a Canon 24-70 2.4L and and the other with a Canon 50mm 1.4, 1 Lowel Rifa and 1 Lowel Omni, and two Manfrotto tripods

Josh has a Poor-Mans-Dolly, which works REALLY well, along with the Manfrotto tripod he used that had a boom feature built into it (that I did not know about).  This allowed him to get some REALLY cool shots off the dolly as pictured above. Josh built his Dolly out of 2 pieces of 1/2″ plywood, so it weights a metric ton, but for a couple of shots we had both of us and the gear on the dolly with no problem. Josh ran the A cam and I grabbed whatever he wasn’t using and got some b-roll.  The two of us managed to tango around, trading cameras as we went, to get nice complimenting shots.

The other plus of running 2 cams is it really cut down on the time we needed our talent.  We managed to get the barista from our coffee shop to be our hand model.  Which reminds me, if you are in the Raleigh/Durham area be sure and stop by the Gathering Place in Hope Community Church for the best cup of coffee around (thanks again Joe).  Turns out he was actually pretty good with the tools, plus he was a ton of fun during the shoot. After the shoot Josh spent 5 hours with it in post that night, to capture, transcode and rough cut. Luckily we spent so much time on the set up we really had tons of good footage to pick from, so after 3 hours it was already ready for the polish. The next day he added some lens flares with Knoll Light Factory in After Effects, tightened up the text transitions and it was done.

It amazed me how fast we (meaning Josh) were able to turn this one out. Most of our projects take a lot longer and aren’t nearly as fun or creative. Having a good solid concept makes the workflow so much easier, I think it has something to do with having the goal in mind, that and actually being a pretty good shooter/editor helps a little too. Easy for me to say because I didn’t edit it, but it seems like this project, once we got moving on it, practically made it self. So here is the final footage, the Legacy music was not included for copyright compliance, the current track is”Race Against Time” by Jordan Hancock.