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Video Projection Table of Contents Leader’s Guide..............................................................................................2 Guidelines VALUES AND POLICIES FOR SCREEN USE.............................................................3–4 Images USING STILL IMAGES by Steven Koster.......................................................................................5–6 HOW TO MAKE GREAT EYE CANDY by Len Wilson...........................................................................................7–8 CHURCH PROJECTION SOFTWARE by Kent Morris.............................................................................................9 Equipment THE SCREEN IS LIKE… by Steven Koster...................................................................................10–11 SELECT THE RIGHT SCREEN by Quentin Wagenfield.........................................................................12–13 PASS THE SCREEN TEST by John Stahlman.................................................................................14–15 PROJECTING AN IMAGE by Eric Lardner and Chris Coryell......................................................16–17 Additional Resources...............................................................................18

CHRISTIANITYTODAY I N T E R N A T I O N A L © 2007

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Show me you ways, O  Lord, teach me your  paths; Guide me in your truth  and teach me, For you are God my  savior, and my hope is  in you all day long. —Psalm 25: 4–5


LEADER’S GUIDE

How to use “Video P rojection” Welcometo BUILDING CHURCH LEADERS : Your Complete Guide to Leadership Training. You’ve purchased an innovative resource that will help you develop leaders who can think strategically and biblically about the church. Selected by the editors of Leadership Resources and Christianity Today International, the material comesfrom respected thinkers and church leaders.

“Worship Essentials” is completely flexible and designed to be easy to use. Each theme focuseson a practical area of worship ministry and comprises brief handouts on specific aspects of that ministry. The handouts give a succinct and practical overview of the issues most relevant to your goals. You may use them at the beginning of a meeting to help launch a discussion, or you may hand them out as brief primers for someone new to a particular ministry. This specific theme is designed to help you provide training to your video projection team. You may use it either for a group training session or to give individually to people who work with video images and projection equipment. Simply print the handouts you need and use them as necessary. For example, to examine a sample set of church video projection guidelines, see “Values and Policies for Screen Use” (pp. 3–4). To learn strategies for creating visually attractive images, see “How to Make Great Eye Candy” (pp. 7–8). For information on how to evaluate equipment, learn from “Select the Right Screen” (pp.12–13) and “Projecting An Image” (pp. 16–17). We hope you benefit from this theme as you equip your church to worship God in spirit, truth, and compelling imagery. Need more material, or something on a specific topic? Seeour website at www.BuildingChurchLeaders.com. To contact the editors: E-mail BCL@christianitytoday.com Mail Building Church Leaders, Christianity Today International 465 Gundersen Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188

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G UIDEL I N ES

Values and Policies for Screen Use An example of how one church drew up guidelines for video screens in worship.

1 Corinthians 14:40 Here is an example of guidelines for video screen use, adapted from the values and policies statement of Third Christian Reformed Church in Zeeland, Michigan.

Values for Screen Use 1. We value a blended style of worship. We value songs, liturgy, and worship that mixes old and new and is the kind of worship within which all may find a place. The screen will enhance the praise and worship component of our services. It will also reach a younger generation with a user-receptive medium. 2. We value teaching sermons and messagesthat hearers can follow. The screen could function as a place for sermon outlines, bulletin points, and visuals, and could aid pastors and listeners in the covenant of learning. 3. We value the nurturing and building of community, where all members can see, hear, and participate in the worship encounter. The screen should be readable and visually accessible for all members regardless of where they are seated in the sanctuary. 4. We value silent, prayerful reflective time prior to worship for preparation to meet God. The screen should function as an accompaniment to worship. It should not be used prior to worship beginning for bulletin advertisements or announcements. 5. We value the existing symbols in our worship space, including the furnishings and their placement for the sacraments and the proclamation of the Word. The screen should not be a focal point of the sanctuary. The screen and its images should be regarded as less than those things that are permanent and centrally located in worship space. 6. We value an aesthetically pleasing and liturgically appropriate worship space. The screen and projector should be discreet and should not be distracting in their placement or function. Its colors and tones should not diminish liturgical colors in our worship space. 7. We value a music-reading congregation. The screen should have a capacity to reproduce printed musical notation. 8. We value the function of books and we value the use of books in worship. We especially value teaching children to find Bible passageswith the context of a book. The screen should not replace the use of books in worship nor take away the function of turning together to books for the public hearing of Scripture. 9. We value simplicity and prudent use of resources. The screen should be uncomplicated and cost-efficient enough that its use is not expected for every service. 10. We value the time and creative energies of our current staff. We recommend a PowerPoint or screen team to create and maintain what is on the screen. Like the sound system, pastoral staff should not be responsible for the screen’s use, its success,or its failure. 11. We value the hearing of the Word through the use of relevant examples and images, recognizing the profound impact of images on our imagination. The screen’s use of images should be managed with great care. 12. We value following all copyright laws. We will explore what license or permission processesneed to be complete prior to visually reproducing a song or text. Visitors and members should be assured that we are licensed to display what appears on the screen.

Specific Criteria for Screen Use © 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


G UIDEL I N ES Artwork— Images should be soft and sensitive to our space as holy ground. Art should be sensitive to other areas in the worship space and liturgical season. Where possible, we would like to use commissioned rather than stock iconographic images. [Values 5, 6, 11] Motion— Slide transitions should be soft, and should be complete prior to a worship leader’s speaking. If the screen will be used, it should remain in the down position so its movement does not distract. There should be no graphic motion on the screen when the congregation’s attention should be devoted to other areas in the sanctuary. [Values 4, 6] Contrast— Text and images should be in sharp contrast with the background. To blend with surrounding décor, consideration should be made for darker backgrounds. The color palate selected should be aesthetically pleasing. Where possible, art and color should be coordinated and be captured as a theme. [Values 4, 6] Video and re-projection— Video clips should be thematically consistent with the worship service and should avoid excessive rapid image transitions. In skits and productions, video effect should not detract from the production participants. Use at these times is encouraged, especially if it adds value when other props are impossible or impractical. At this time, re-projection of the camera image is not advised. [Values 5, 11] Text— The use of Bibles and songbooks should be maintained. The primary text for the sermon should come from a book rather than projected on the screen. The use of the screen for accompanying passagesand other translations is encouraged. [Values 5, 8] Music—Praise songs should be promoted to the congregation. Songsthat convey supplication, submission, and other contemplations should not be accompanied by projection. Alternate colors or bold texts should indicate when the congregation should sing, particularly when alternate verses are used. The worship coordinator or pastor will indicate when a song should not be projected becauseof a desire to use musical notation. The congregation’s familiarity with a song or response should be taken into account when determining the necessity of using the screen. [Values 7, 8] Pre- and post-service—Consideration of image or art slide show or video sequencesthat set focus on the theme of the service or liturgical season and help the congregation focus on the worship are encouraged for consideration. Music tracks (but not speech tracks) are appropriate with the slides and video. [Values 4, 6] —Adapted from “Technology in Worship,” Calvin Institute for Christian Worship, www.calvin.edu/worship. Used with permission.

Discuss 1. How detailed are our values and policies for video screen projection? 2. How would we revise the documents above to match the needs of our church? 3. Who determines how video projection takes place in our church? Should anyone else be involved in these decisions?

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I MAGES

Using Still I mages Think about these four major categories when deciding what goes on the screen.

Ecclesiastes 12:10 There are four primary ways to use still imagery in worship: text, illustration, thematic metaphor, and liturgical sequence.

Text Typography can be used to convey more than the content of the words. The challenge is using the “non-verbals” of text to say more than the text itself does. One simple method is to vary the color, style, and position of simple text according to who is speaking. Another example might be using colored backgrounds that match the liturgical season. The limitation of plain text is that it does not use the full visual potential of the screen. It seemsa shame to have all the technology of a digital screen but project only text. Even so, plain text and solid backgrounds can be sophisticated enough to lead the congregation in worship.

Illustration Illustration is using a graphic, photo, or other artwork to enhance some other component of worship. One of the simplest methods is adding a visual background to reinforce, both visually and emotionally, the emotions of song lyrics. You can use just the text itself as a graphic element. For example, an artistic rendering of Psalm 23 could support a scripture reading as both a reading and a visual presentation. A multi-sensory approach leads the congregation performing a segment of worship. For example, in one treatment of the Lord’s Prayer, the congregation sings a version of the “Our Father” while performing a series of arm motions. The screen demonstrates motions that embody the words, leading the congregation in “performing” the prayer. The sermon outline can be displayed, with bullet points timed to appear as the preacher makes each point. The intention is to enhance the teaching component of the message. All of these methods and techniques are useful, but they are often abused and are inherently limited. Poor choices for backgrounds can quickly become distracting to worship rather than beneficial. A cliché sunset or awkward photograph becomesa stumbling block, particularly if it occurs often. Illustration is itself limited. It focuseson illustrating just one segment of worship. It is limited in depth becauseit is always intended to illustrate something secondary in worship. Always ask, what is the purpose of worship, and how can the screen serve it directly?

Thematic Metaphor Thematic metaphor graphics capture the theme of a service. The themes might come from the sermon, a Scripture passage,or the church calendar. The goal of the screen is to encapsulate the theme in a single image that guides the purpose underlying the entire service. This becomesthe anchor graphic that determines the backgrounds, palette, and other visual elements for the whole service. However, it’s still just one static image, which functions somewhat like a single-panel editorial cartoon, making a single point in a static image. Single-image metaphors do not make use of the dynamism and variety inherent to a computercontrolled screen or the drama built into worship. Thematic metaphor does help lead the congregation in considering worship as a whole by crystallizing the service into a single teaching point, but it doesn’t necessarily tap the full potential of the technology or what worship is all about.

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I MAGES Combining the best of text, illustration, and thematic metaphor, liturgical sequencescapture both the flexibility of the technology and the drama inherent in worship. In a sense, each slide points to something. The key question is, to what does the slide point? Single-image illustrations might point to a song or a text. But then the question is, to what does the song or reading point? What is the task of worship for the congregation? Most congregations follow a regular pattern of worship from week to week. Some churches are highly formal in these liturgical steps, while others are more informal and free flowing. This is a story we tell each week: we are gathered, nourished, and sent by God in worship. All of our choices of songs, texts, and prayers serve this story. Worship planners use this story all the time, sometimes almost unconsciously. Liturgical sequencesalso nicely incorporate thematic metaphors. If a single-image metaphor captures the overall theme of a service, a liturgical sequence can unfold and develop the metaphor over a series of images. Visually depicting the theme of the service in this way develops the metaphor more fully, and illustrates the basic tasks of worship. It also takes advantage of the power of the technology. Since the screen is controllable and flexible, able to change images easily, why limit the metaphor to one image?This dynamic power, used to develop a thematic metaphor through the drama of most fundamental tasks of worship, makes liturgical sequencesthe most powerful use of the screen for leading the congregation with light. —STEVE KOSTERFrom ; Leading With Light, www.leadingwithlight.com. Used with permission

Discuss 1. How often do we consciously plan the sequence of video images to coordinate with the worship service? 2. Which of the four ways mentioned do we use the most often? 3. What are the positives and negatives of each approach?

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I MAGES

How to M ake Great Eye Candy Simple, colorful graphics help create an attractive principal image of worship.

Psalm 84:1–2 In this visual age, we can set the scenefor powerful worship by projecting imagesthat attract the eyes.Use these techniques to brighten up the content that appears on your video screen.

Work With a Primary Image for the Event Represent the metaphor visually through a single title or headline graphic that may be used periodically to reinforce the theme. The title graphic should state the theme, either with imagery, text, or both.

Make It Eye Candy Keep your graphics simple, bold, and fun to look at, but representative of television culture rather than computer culture. Television is our dominant cultural medium. There are more homes with television sets than with computers. Use the forms of broadcast television rather than PowerPoint presentation pie charts. Chooseprimary colors over subtle variations. Keep with the small-box colors of Crayolas and use light and shadows to provide depth.

Establish a Style Pick a style and use it consistently for the duration of the service or services. Choosea consistent color scheme and typography. Use it for Scripture, sermon points, and graphic images. Make it present throughout the event in some fashion. This is called establishing an identity. Color. Color has an impact on perception and retention, and therefore shouldn’t be minimized. Cool colors like blue,

green, and purple have a calming effect, while warm colors like red, yellow, and orange are more stirring. In fact, red has been shown in studies to increasepulse and breathing rates, and blue to calm them. Many colors, in fact, have connotations with subliminal effects. Red may be associated with desire, passion, or violence. Green may be money or materialism. Blue is often a spirit color, as is white. Red, white, and blue are good for patriotic themes. Further, for screen use, high contrast is important, usually light text on dark or deep background. Good color combination examples include yellow on blue, orange on purple, and white on almost anything dark. Again, for instruction, watch TV, especially local and national news programs, which make heavy use of graphics with bright matching colors. Fonts. There are two basic types of fonts; display or headline fonts, and copy, or body fonts. Display fonts are goofy and

unusual, and copy fonts are normal, traditional fonts, and the two should never be combined. It’s not much fun to read a Scripture on screen in Cookie Cutter or Dodge City font, although that might be appropriate for the reference. Lead the eye. Western culture tracks movement left to right, top to bottom. This means that graphic elements need to be

positioned and balanced accordingly. Don’t put an image in the bottom right corner, this will lead an eye out of the frame. For example, if the background image is a landscape with a mountain in the upper left corner, and a tree in the lower right corner, then text should be placed around the tree, middle and lower left, left justified, maintaining balance with the background. The “rule of thirds” usesa grid that divides the frame into nine parts, like a tic-tac-toe board, for the purpose of composing elements. Apply the rule of thirds and make sure that the elements are distributed in even fashion. Space. Use a lot of space within and between graphic elements. Elements are each of the objects in an image, including

display headlines, images of any size, or blocks of text. Avoid visual clutter. Leave plenty of space for elements to have their being, and to insert additional elements and illustrations.

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I MAGES Lines. Random elements may be brought together in a cohesive fashion through the use of lines and frames. For example,

titles and points can rest on a semi-translucent bar. Or, absent a directional background image, a two-and-a-half-sided bar can corral the elements to the center third of the frame. A common example is the recurring trend in design to use thick black borders to create boxes for images and information. Crop images. Delete all the unnecessary data around a subject to focus the viewer’s attention to the purpose of the image.

This is particularly the casewhen using imagesfor illustrations, such as a newspaper headline, or when picking one person from a crowd. Also, don’t crop people at their joints—it is visually jarring. Leave headroom and space in front of profiled faces, to maintain continuity. Light and shadows. The primary technique that separates the amateur artist from the professional is the use of imaginary

lights on the surface of the graphic, which creates corollary shadows. Light and shadows can give a solid color depth and direct the eye to the purpose of the image. Some programs have light-producing filters; blurring light and dark areas achieves similar results. —LEN WILSON; Adapted from The Wired Church: Making Media Ministry (Abingdon Press,1999). Used by permission

Discuss 1. What are the advantagesof picking one style and maintaining it throughout the service? 2. What are the style guidelines we use to evaluate an image? 3. What specific examples from television shows can you think of that can help create slides that are “eye candy”?

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I MAGES

Chu rch P rojection Software A wide selection of programs gives your church alternatives to PowerPoint

Jeremiah 10:6–7 While Microsoft’s ubiquitous PowerPoint package will certainly work in church, it is not always the best solution for the needs of some congregations. Several alternatives are available that addressthe unique requirements of projection in the worship environment. Finding the most appropriate software requires a definition of the church’s goals and a clear understanding of the package benefits that best meet those goals. Here is a list of some popular choices designed specifically for churches.

Prologue Sunday Plus. Designed to be flexible and easy to use. A preview mode allows the operator to decide the content of the screen image prior to its viewing by the congregation, thereby eliminating missed cues and incorrect data display. www.sundayplus.com/

SongShow Plus. This is a full-spectrum ensemble that integrates with CCLI’s (Christian Copyright Licensing Inc.) SongSelect directory as well as Integrity’s Worship Software to fulfill the lyrical needs of the worship leader.

www.songshowplus.com WorshipBuilder. TakesMicrosoft Word and PowerPoint and combines them into a worship presentation package. www.worshipbuilder.com/ Church View. Teleprompting is the focal point of Church View’s system of visual reinforcement. It allows a pastor to see the Scripture reference before the congregation so he or she can segue smoothly into the reference. Choirs and soloists can also benefit by previewing the opening words of the next verse. www.churchview.net/

EasyWorship. Features text overlay onto a background, including full-text support, advanced verse searching, and adaptability to any style of worship environment. www.easyworship.com/ MediaShout. Software designed to meet the needs of preaching, Bible study, music, or drama.

www.mediashout.com/ —KENT MORRIS; Copyright © 2002 Christianity Today International. Originally appeared in YOUR CHURCH.

Discuss 1. Which church projection software do we use now, if any? 2. What are this package’s strengths and weaknessesas we use it in our church? 3. Examine the alternatives listed above. Which hold the most promise for our church?

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E QUIPMEN T

The Screen is L ike… Consider how the video screen fits with existing elements of your sanctuary.

Psalm 45:1 Many early television shows were simply photographed radio shows. It took a few years before new patterns emerged. We’re in the same position with video screens in worship. We’re still discovering what the screen is in worship becauseit is like many things but nothing in particular. Part of the problem is that the screen does not naturally have a strong model that’s already part of worship.

The Function of a Screen So, what is the screen like?

If it’s a big songbook , then we’ll project just lyrics and maybe music.

 If it’s a bulletin , we’ll project announcements, or maybe the order of worship and responsive readings. 

If it’s a television , we’ll show video programs that tell stories.

 If it’s a movie theater , we’ll make the screen the center of attention and expect to be entertained.  We might even show promotional spots before the service starts to take advantage of the captive audience and to keep them entertained before the main event.  If it’s a business presentation, then we’ll emphasize outlines and graphs, teaching and motivating people about our “product,” whatever that might be. Some of these models might offer some possibilities, but none are a direct fit. None of these models both take full advantage of the capabilities of the medium and reflect the purposesof worship.

Incorporating the Screen with Traditional Visuals One helpful approach to considering the role of visual media in worship is to look at what visuals we already use in worship. 1. Architecture. Whether your sanctuary is ornate or plain, it visually says something about what’s important in worship. If the screen is an architectural element, it should function in conjunction with the room, not compete with it. Maybe that means placing the screen in as unobtrusive-yet-visible position as possible. The perfect screen disappears when not in use, not so much by retracting but by blending into the background by using a default color palette for graphics that matches the room. When the screen should not be the focus of attention, it could display a plain, simple image that reflects the style of the room rather than leaving a stark white rectangle on the wall. 2. Liturgical furniture. Like architecture, the furniture declares something about what we value in worship. The screen is often a de facto piece of liturgical furniture, serving as a focal point for leading worship. As with architecture, the goal is to avoid having the screen compete with other elements. In many churches, for example, the most functional place for the screen is centered on the front wall, often right over a cross. Since Christ’s cross crystallizes the very reason we worship, covering it is not an insignificant problem, but neither is it insurmountable. If the cross must be covered, it should reappear somewhere else. Consider using a freestanding cross to replace the one on the wall. That removes the competition for wall spaceand also moves the cross into the action. 3. Stained glass. If the screen is like stained glass, we’ll project simple symbols or Bible stories. Stained glass is static. It provides consistency as the same images hang in the walls for years, effectively becoming part of the architecture. The screen could emulate this consistency by projecting such images repeatedly. Or the screen could expand these images somewhat by telling one story through a series of images rather than in just one. Maybe the screen could focus our © 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


E QUIPMEN T attention on particular symbols or stories depending on the time of year or special occasion. The key is seeing the role of visuals as shaping the worship experience through enduring symbols that shape our identity. 4. Banners. Of all the visual elements listed so far, the screen is most like a banner, but even more flexible. As a thought experiment, imagine someone who comes out with a pole, taking down one banner and hanging another throughout the service. Instead of simply declaring with one banner “it’s Christmas time,” a series of banners could be used to tell the Christmas story. Seeing the screen as a versatile and powerful banner that sets the tone and tells the story gets us a long way to appreciating the power of the screen for leading worship in a way that complements all the other aspects of the environment. 5. Pipe organs. If the screen functions visually like a banner on steroids, it behaves rather like a musical instrument. In fact, a pipe organ might be the best corollary for how a screen is used in worship. Like the screen, a pipe organ is a big lump of expensive technology. It needs to be installed in a worship space in a way that complements the surrounding architecture. It is used primarily to lead worship, particularly congregational actions. Just as a piano tuner is not necessarily the best person to manage a full music ministry, a “computer geek” is not necessarily the best person to run a media ministry. The same sorts of questions and thinking that go into choosing music for worship should be used to guide a visual ministry. In short, the screen is like a lot of things, both secular and religious. But maybe the best way to think about the screen is that it applies the power and preparation of a musical instrument to the visual role of an infinitely flexible banner. —STEVEN KOSTERAdapted ; from “The Screen Is Like…” Leading With Light, www.leadingwithlight.com. Used with permission

Discuss 1. Which of the roles mentioned above (songbook, television, bulletin, and so on) do our screens play? 2. How well does our screen fit with the existing visual elements of worship in our sanctuary? 3. Why is it important to have a model for how we use screens in worship?

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E QUIPMEN T

Select the Right Screen Factor in church size, screen uses, and surface material to get the big picture.

1 Thessalonians 1:4–5 All too often, the selection of a video projection screen is treated as an afterthought. However, the performance of an expensive new projector is intimately tied to the screen it projects on. The screen and the projector work interactively, and understanding the relationship between them can be complicated and highly technical.

Basic Factors Screen size is perhaps the most basic parameter. To determine screen size, use the rule of thumb from the Society of

Motion Picture Engineers: divide the screen-to-front-row distance by two—this should be the approximate width of the screen. For another width measurement, divide the screen-to-last-row distance by six—it should be about the same width as using the front row distance calculation, but use the larger size. Yet another method for determining screen width is to base it on audience size (see chart below), also from the Society of Motion Picture Engineers.

Audience Size

Screen Width

20–50

5 feet

50–200

7 feet

200–350

8 feet

350–500

10 feet

500–750

12 feet

750–1,000

14 feet

1,000 or more

20 feet or more Table formulated by the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers.

Gain is a measure of screen “brightness.” Since a screen does not generate light, gain refers to the screen’s ability to

reflect light from the projector. In the caseof rear projection, gain refers to the screen’s ability to transmit light. A higher gain means a brighter image, but the tradeoff is in a reduced viewing angle. Viewing angle is a measurement in degrees of how far to the right or left of the screen centerline you can sit and still see

the image. Typically, viewing should not be more than 45 degrees away from the centerline. Gain and viewing angle are related. High-gain screens achieve their gain by directing more of the projector’s light into a narrower viewing angle. Low-gain screens are designed to spread the image over a greater viewing angle. Depending on an application, high gain is not necessarily better than low gain.

Screen Uses Screens and their frames and mounts are designed with specific uses in mind. The main categories of use are portable, classroom, and sanctuary. Portable screensare usually five to seven feet measured diagonally, weigh from 10 to 18 pounds, fold compactly, and set up

easily. Some portable screens have a pneumatic scissors mechanism for raising and lowering the screen surface from the base. Others consist of a frame and removable/interchangeable screens. Classroom screensare usually wall-mounted or portable. Wall- and ceiling-mounted roll-up screens for classrooms are

available with either a manual or an electric lowering and retract mechanism. © 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


E QUIPMEN T Sanctuary screensare usually permanently mounted. The screens themselves can be either fixed or retractable. Most

retractable screens for sanctuaries are mounted on a wall or the ceiling, but some rise up from a floor or cabinet mount. When used in the sanctuary to support the sermon or other presentation, the screen should be close enough to the presenter so that viewers can see both the screen and the presenter without turning their heads. This usually means placing the screen over the platform. Dual screens, one on each side of the platform, may be necessary in large churches. Viewer sightlines should not be obstructed by balconies or low-hanging chandeliers. Make sure light, either natural or artificial, doesn’t fall on the screen—shadesand draperies can help. Reduce light levels when the projector is operating. Darkened rooms provide better contrast and resolution and reduce the brightness requirement of the projector—a money-saving option.

Screen Surfaces High-gain screen surfaces are useful in a fully lighted room. These screens are usually covered with beads of glassor highly reflective plastic. High-gain screens have a limited viewing angle, since they direct reflected light to a narrow, more concentrated area for increased brightness in that viewing area. A matte white screen is preferred for applications that require a large viewing angle. If the room cannot be darkened sufficiently for the wide scattering of a matte white screen, you might need to choose a more powerful projector. A rear projection application is often preferred to front projection. Screens used for rear projection are translucent and appear gray as opposed to the white surfaces of front projection screens. Rear projection screens typically have wide viewing angles and, with an appropriately bright projector, are visible even in full sanctuary lighting.

Plasma Displays and Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs) Plasma displays and liquid-crystal displays (LCDS)are not screens but they can replace them in many applications. These devices present information directly from computers, VCRand DVD players, and live video cameras. No projector is required. Plasma display devices have great image clarity and contrast, are usable in a fully lighted room, and are available up to 102 inches wide. LCDsare cheaper and not as bright, but have a longer life. The maximum width of an LCD display is about 50 inches, but future LCDdisplays will be larger. —QUENTIN WAGENFIELD; Copyright © 2005 Christianity Today International. Originally appeared in YOUR CHURCH.

Discuss 1. What feedback have we received from the congregation about our screens? 2. How closely does the size of our screen match the size of our congregation? 3. What changescan we make to the sanctuary to enable people to better view words and images projected onto a screen?

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E QUIPMEN T

Pass the Screen Test What you project on is as important as how you project it.

Psalm 36:9 A projector screen must be carefully chosen to work specifically with the projector technology, the room geometry, seating arrangements, projector placement, and level of ambient light, just to name a few of the important factors.

Screen and Projector Together Although many churches buy a projector first and then the screen, the reverse order may be better. Which will most members see—the screen or the projector? While only the technically apt can understand the specifications and features of a projector, everyone knows when the screen is too small or the images too dull. No matter how good the screen is, it cannot make a bad projector good. It is also true that even the best projector cannot overcome a mismatched or inadequate screen. Keep projector and screen as one purchase—well coordinated, balanced, compatible, and suitable. Will you use a front or rear projection system? Rear projection will generally offer higher quality images. However, the tradeoff is the necessity of space behind the screen, and control of ambient light between the projector and the screen. Many times, rear projection is not feasible in a church setting. Ambient light is the amount of light in the room before the projector is turned on, and is an important factor in selecting both the projector and the screen. Note how many windows the room has, which direction they face, and what kind of glass they have. A movie theatre has no windows and requires a different kind of screen than a church with many stained glasswindows.

All About Angles Pure scattering. The job of a projector screen is to impart the right amount of light

scattering to the projected image so that the image can be seen from many different locations in the room. A matte white screen surface is as close as you can get to this kind of pure scattering. This surface makes the image on the screen visible from anywhere in front of the screen, and the image has uniform brightness regardless of the angle of the viewer from the screen. The projector must be powerful enough to overcome ambient light and create the appropriate brightness at any angle of viewing.

Reflection and scattering

Reflection and scattering. In many cases,a combination of reflection and

scattering is useful. For example, when the projector is mounted overhead and shines down on the screen, some amount of reflection will direct more light energy to the viewers than will pure scattering. This type of screen is made by using a light-scattering coating over a reflective backing material. The density of the coating and the reflectivity of the backing determine the relative amount of scattering and reflection. Pure scattering: the image can be seen from any angle

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E QUIPMEN T Refraction and scattering. Another common situation

is where the projector and viewers are both below the screen. Here, a screen that takes advantage of “refraction” is very useful. When light travels from one medium to another, it often changesdirection. Screens are often covered with a layer of very small glass beads to provide refraction. The result is that some of the light is scattered, while some of the light is directed back in the direction from which it came. Refraction and scattering

Best viewing range. Extend a line from the center of the screen,

perpendicular to the screen’s surface, to the rear of the sanctuary. Any viewers that are more than 50 degreesaway from that line might find the image quality to be unacceptable due to reduced brightness and image distortion. That is why multiple screens at different angles or different positions may be needed when the room is very wide and a large number of seats are outside the screen’s cone of vision. Good viewing is limited to about 50 degrees either side of the projected axis.

—JOHN STAHLMAN; Copyright © 2004 by Christianity Today International. Originally appeared in YOUR CHURCH.

Discuss 1. How well do our screen and projector work together as a unit? Are they mismatched? 2. How do we presently test the viewing quality of our screen? 3. Based on this article, what improvements in our video projection system should be made?

© 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


E QUIPMEN T

P rojecting an I mage Don’t shortcut the evaluation process when choosing a new video projector.

Mark 4:21 The key to selecting the right video projector for your church is combining detailed preparation with a thorough product evaluation.

How Bright is Bright Enough? Light output. As projection lamps age, light output diminishes. Most manufacturers deem that the useful life of a lamp ends when the lamp reaches 50 percent of its “as new” performance. Therefore, it might be wise to consider only projectors that meet your minimum brightness requirements when the lamp reaches its 50 percent output level. This means you would be starting with a projector that produces more light than necessary when the lamp is new. A projector that features an adjustable lamp power supply is the ideal choice. Maximum light and usable light. Maximum projector light output is the maximum light a projector is capable of producing. Usable light output is the amount of light a projector produces through a properly set up source. Usable light output is what matters for an application, and is therefore the important criteria for selecting a projector.

Power Struggles Control the voltage. Projectors have an internal power supply that converts the ACpower from the facility (the mains power) to power needed for the lamp and internal electronics. The lamp and internal electronics require a tightly controlled voltage and current from the internal power supply. Any upsets in mains power can interrupt the operation of the internal power supply and place a considerable amount of stress on the lamp, the power supply, and other electronic components of the projector. Preventive measures. Make sure each projector has its own dedicated circuit to guard against dips in power. Be prepared for power spikes, inductive hum, and brownout conditions. To isolate the projector from these influences, use an online Universal Power Supply.

A Spotlight on Lamps Xenon or metal halide? The vast majority of projectors use either xenon or metal halide lamp systems. Xenon lamps produce a color spectrum very close to that of daylight, enabling the projector to produce accurate colors. Xenon lamps also produce a stable spectral output, assuring consistency in the color performance as the lamp ages. These projectors are excellent choices for multi-projector venues and array applications. Metal halide lamps are relatively inexpensive, long lasting, and very efficient in producing brightness. The small size of these lamps enables projectors to be comparably small, lightweight, and power efficient. Metal halide is a good choice for high-use applications where long-term maintenance costs are a concern. However, metal halide lamps don’t perform as well as xenon lamps with respect to spectral output or native white point.

A Color­full Performance Native color. Native color, also referred to as “color temperature” or the “white point,” is the color point of the projector before any user adjustments are applied. Projectors with an off-target native color point require significant adjustment, which in turn affects other performance aspects. Never employ a projector without first knowing its native white point performance, which can be defined by using a CIE1931 chromaticity chart. The right mix. A projector creates color by internally generating red, green, and blue light energy and mixing them together to form the desired color. The bulbs and filters cannot produce pure colors that would be plotted on the very edgesof the chromaticity chart. As a result, a projector will have a defined “color space” within the chart defined by a © 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


E QUIPMEN T triangle of three specific points. These three points reflect the projector’s limitations in creating “pure” red, green, and blue signals.

Fill Factor, Lenses, and Uniformity Fill factor. Fill factor is the percentage of the projected image that contains information content as opposed to dead space between pixels. A higher fill factor means less dead space. Projectors with a combination of high resolution and a high fill factor will display smooth, film-like images. Projectors with a low fill factor will appear over-pixilated. The result can resemble looking at an image through a window screen. Lenses. Pay special attention to center-to-corner pixel focus and flare, magnification errors, light output efficiency, and brightness uniformity at every point on the screen. Conduct your projector evaluations using the same lens type that you will purchase with the projector. Uniformity. Determine whether a projector has “hot spots” or “holes” in the image. From center to corner, the projected image should be uniformly bright and smooth, with no areas that are brighter or dimmer than the rest of the image. The ability to produce a uniform image, called “flat field” illumination, gives a better visual appearance. This is always beneficial, but especially on large screens or when several projected images are tiled or edge-matched. Uniformity of illumination also creates uniform color and color balance across the screen. —ERIC LARDNERAND CHRIS CORYELL; Copyright © 2004 Christianity Today International. Originally appeared in YOUR CHURCH.

Discuss 1. How well do we understand the specifications of our current projector? How well is it now performing? 2. What steps have we taken to avoid “spikes” and other potentially dangerous power fluctuations to the projector? 3. How do we evaluate the performance of our current projector? Who has the responsibility to make sure it is performing at its best?

© 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com


Fu r ther Resources Books and resources to help your church be successful in video projection.

 BuildingChurchLeaders.com : Leadership training resources from Christianity Today International. -“Worship” Training Theme and PowerPoint -“Worship Administration” Best Church Practices -“Planning the Worship Service” Practical Ministry Skills 

LeadershipJournal.net: Leadership training resources from Christianity Today International.

Faith Visuals. Visual media and training to help you worship, from Christianity Today International. http://faithvisuals.com/

Church Products and Services.com: http://www.christianitytoday.com/cbg/

Calvin Institute of Christian Worship . www.calvin.edu/worship/. Promotes the scholarly study of theology, history, and practice of Christian worship. An Hour on Sunday: Creating Moments of Transformation and Wonder by Nancy Beach. Includes ten foundational principles that unite artists and ministry leaders around a common language and empower artists and pastors to work effectively together. (Zondervan, 2004; ISBN978-0310252962) Digital Storytellers: The Art of Communicating the Gospel in Worship by Len Wilson and JasonMoore. Designed to bring church leaders up-to-date as they think about and produce worship media. DVD-ROMincluded. (Abingdon Press,2002; ISBN978-0687052134) For the Sake of the Gospel: A Media Ministry Primer by Kent V. Wilson. Examines the “why,” the “how”, and the “what” of media worship. (Augsburg Fortress Press,2006; ISBN 978-0800623425) High- Tech Worship? Using Presentational Technologies Wisely by Quentin Schultze. Provides counsel on how to best use the power of technology in your church. (Baker Books, 2004; ISBN 978-0801064807) The Wired Church by Len Wilson. A primer on how to build a media ministry at your church. Includes a CD-ROM. (Abingdon Press,1999; ISBN978-0687069156) Wired for Ministry: How the Internet, Visual Media, and Other New Technologies Can Serve Your Church by John Jewell. Helps church leaders make senseof ministry in the digital age. (Brazos Press,2004; ISBN 978-1587430756)

© 2007 • Christianity Today International BuildingChurchLeaders.com

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