With that in mind, my comments may be a little slanted this time. I was focused on my detailed responsibilities and not so much the overall production, which Ben and Josh were leading. Ben has agreed to write another Overdrive response to the weekend, so keep your eye out for that in the near future. Nevertheless, I thought I'd take share some thoughts from this Sunday.
This was an unusual Sunday, to put it lightly. We ordained five pastors this weekend. You can listen to the ceremony if you missed it. Here's a reminder of what happened:
- Bob Kauflin led us in three songs.
- Joshua Harris shared announcements.
- Kenneth Maresco taught us about ordination.
- Each pastor spoke about one of his favorite passages of scripture, then we watched a video of someone in the congregation honoring him. (This happened five times)
- Josh charged the pastors to fulfill their responsibilities before the Lord.
- CJ Mahaney, Robin Boisvert, and Pastor Lee (Joe Lee's Dad) prayer for them and their wives.
- Bob led us in one more song.
Two notes from the mix position:
- We definitely have a 250Hz ring problem in the room, especially with E6 mics. I've heard it before, and now I've created it. The big problem is that the ring is inaudible at mix position. For safety sake, we should just notch a little 250 on all E6s automatically.
- We had an interesting anomaly in the audio feed for the video this week. The audio for video was created in stereo by a professional post-production mixer from our church, Dallas Taylor. The music - written and performed by Roger Hooper, also of the church - was in stereo. I began with the left and right channels hard-panned to each side. As a result, I didn't realize the channels were out of polarity from each other. It sounded great in the room; it even sounded great up in the video control room; but when the left and right signals were combined for the audio recording and the mono feed to RF video land, the speech disappeared. As a result, we'll be adding a note to the mixer checklist to make sure to check a video's audio polarity by putting both channels in the mono cluster and listening carefully. (Note: the polarity problem is likely a wiring issue that I've yet to locate. It is not the mistake of those creating the videos.)
I want to say a special thanks to Josh for taking the time to watch each of the five videos and write down the last two or three sentences of each segment. Having this information allowed us to synchronize lights, video, and sound and get out of each video as smoothly as possible. I want to make this an ongoing practice, especially when we have multiple videos on the same Sunday.
I had only two thoughts for improvement about video on Sunday:
- Stay Calm. Act Carefully. I saw one DVD menu, one mouse cursor, and one edge of a Keynote window throughout the morning. With all that was going on, it's fantastic that those were the only things that happened. The key to avoiding littlegotchas like these is to stay calm and act carefully, even in the midst of "urgent" requests.
- Watch the waverform monitors closely. Many of the shots looked dark on the screen, especially during the charge and the prayer in the second meeting. This made it more difficult for the camera ops to get locked in on focus, so some shots were soft at the same time. On active Sundays like this one, everyone needs to be actively participating in getting these nuances of the shots correct from the tech director all the way to the camear operators.
Craig did a great job with the lighting. I noticed that he made one mistake, though. He left the warm downlights on during several of the sermon cues. What's more? I thought it was a wonderful mistake. It added another level of separation between the cool background and the warm front-lighting, making the IMAG video look better. Let's keep doing this each week.
I did wish that the lighting for the charge had been more even. On the videos, and even in the still pictures, the two guys in the middle were clearly brighter than the rest. I think this was a small moment where we missed an opportunity to really excel. You can watch a slideshow from Sunday that demonstrates what I mean.
Your Turn. What did you think of Sunday's ordination ceremony?
Photo Credit: Bryan Fenstermacher