Motion Graphics In Worship Key To Creating Right Visual Atmosphere

Great visual atmospheres don’t just happen; they are birthed out of proper preparation and plenty of rehearsal.

Motion Graphics In Worship Key To Creating Right Visual Atmosphere
An image from the front section of the Infinite Energy Arena in Gwinnett, Ga., at the Orange Conference held April 26-28, during the song "Alive" by Hillsong.

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Motion Graphics In Worship Key To Creating Right Visual Atmosphere

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Motion Graphics In Worship Key To Creating Right Visual Atmosphere

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Last week, I found myself surrounded by 8,000 church leaders in an arena located northeast of Atlanta, Ga. Our live events team was hired to run all the motion graphics during worship at the Orange Conference, a conference designed for entire family ministry teams.

The video setup was the focus of the stage design; a larger-than-life LED wall display that consisted of six distinct 1920x1080 outputs. All of this video was being played from one single media server. The LED wall was 40 feet wide by 20 feet tall, and had more than 5.7 million pixels, which required an inordinate amount of attention to the details.

I view (motion graphics) as powerful visual chords, when combined together effectively, have the opportunity to enhance the worship atmosphere…

Motion backgrounds in worship play a tremendous role in creating the right visual atmosphere. In turn, they also have the likelihood of distraction.

Here are a few things I did at the Orange Conference to prevent distraction as much as possible.

1. Don’t overload a song with too many graphics.

For the most part, I would use two (maybe three) different motion graphics per song. Most of the time, I was changing a motion to add just a slightly different texture or color to match the shift in musical emotion. For example, I may have a collection of media from a single producer and use three different motions; one for the verses, one for the chorus and one for the bridge. Each of these areas is musically unique enough that it helps to elevate the energy and emotion by pairing them with a different visual.

2. Always match the lighting and motion background colors.

No matter how large the video setup, I always work hand in hand with the lighting designer to create a cohesive visual story. The larger the display, the more important this rule becomes. Distraction comes about when something feels out of order visually, and this is why matching color is such an important principle. As a band member must play the same chords for us to not be distracted by the horrendous music, technicians and visual worship leaders must also play the same creative chord.

3. Be OK with nothing on the screens.

On numerous occasions, I would let all or most of the song to be void of a motion graphic. When you have a wall with 5.7 million pixels, it’s a lot to take in visually. And thus, the right motion background can be incredibly effective.  On the counter, it’s just as effective when there is nothing on the wall, because it provides visual rest and contrast to the rest of the design.

More About Luke McElroy
Luke McElroy is the founder and visionary behind Orange Thread Media, the parent company to Orange Thread Live Events, TripleWide Media and SALT Conferences. Beyond his ability to cast vision for creativity in live events and worship environments, he’s passionate about mentoring, leadership and teamwork. Luke got his start in creative arts as a content producer creating animations for live events and worship services around the world. Some of the work he and his team created have been used by American Idol, Blake Shelton, Atlanta Falcons, and thousands of churches around the entire world.
Get in Touch:    More by Luke McElroy

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Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.

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Visual Arts · Environmental Projection · Gwinett · LED walls · Lighting Designer · Motion Graphics · Orange Conference · Video · All Topics

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