bob carlton sent me a link a couple of weeks back to a new video from sigur ros. they have commissioned a series of films to go with the album valteri. this one tied in so perfectly with the wake up theme and service i outlined in the previous blog post i couldn't believe it! we showed this during the communion at the end of the service. i was so hoping that one of the people would open thier eyes towards the end and sure enough...
i have got to know jonathan simpson through his dad phil who is a good friend and who works at cms. his dad travels around asia networking, catalysing and supporting mission. his son has clearly caught the love of asia and travel and he is quite the photographer. have a look through the images on his web site which is a lovely site all round.
anyway these days if you've got a decent camera which jonathan has, you can shoot fabulous movies and there are several movies on the site as well...
jonathan has put a movie together and entered it in india is... - a competition to capture something of india in a short film. his movie is india is for skiers. go and have a look and do take the trouble to vote for him!
nick ashman has written a piece of music and created ths movie for remembrance day in memory of his grandad
another grace, another bundle of creativity and worship. the theme was bread and the service involved making yeast, making and baking bread and reflecting on and discussing various things on the way. the smell of the bread baking was great and the bread was then shared and broken at the end of the worship.
i always like the visual side of worship. and when it comes to curating i think a good question to ask as well as developing an order of service and stations and whatever else is whether you can create something that makes visual impact as a central idea. this time round we came up with the idea of getting some alphabet cutters and cutting text into bread that was suspended on washing line across the front of the space saying i am the bread of life. we toasted it so it was less floppy - grace toast!
it was simple but looked brilliant. an added bonus was projecting light onto it created a silhouette of the words on the church wall above.
when the cutters arrived they looked such fun i had to try them out at home and ended up making two video loops using some bread and my oven - grace toasted and grace grilled, both on vimeo. i made these using the canon 5d mkii whose video making potential is such a massive bonus to the camera. to get that photographic look and quality on movies is wonderful. my grill pan has never looked so good...
anyway i am making bread suspension (and related activities) worship trick 73 series 3 . well done to sarah who was curating her first ever grace and pulled off a pretty impressive grace. details will get added to the grace archive in due course i'm sure and photos will appear in the gracelondon flickr group no doubt.
i have not come across radiohead's movie for all i need before but spotted a link to it on bob's facebook page. in the simplest way it highlight's child slavery.
when i was in the usa i picked up a flip camera. couldn't be easier to record movies - press to start, press to stop, flip open the usb stick and plug in to your mac/pc and there you have it. the clips are 640x480. for me it will be great to capture a few things. i tend to focus on still photography and haven't bothered taking a movie camera as well. but this is so small and easy i may do a bit more. it's also ideal for creating some loops for arkaos or keynote or whatever...
in terms of movies i'll upload at vimeo. here's the first flip movie.
this month on proost we have two new items...
we conceived the idea of the series of pocket liturgies to try and make available prayers, liturgies, reflections and rituals that were being born out of the life of local situations. we are really pleased to add hold this space as the fifth in the series to reflect worship growing out of the soil of melbourne, australia. cheryl lawrie is wonderfully gifted in the art of crafting words - if you follow the blog you'll know i regularly link to her writing and have made several pieces worship tricks before now. as well as working in a range of spaces to curate worship events and experiences across the city, cheryl has developed worship in prisons. her prayers and liturgies for that context along with the psalms written by prisoners are powerful. it's in the books section of the site as a download or physical book. (if you are in australia the uniting church bookshop in melbourne will be stocking it).
then cloud is the first proost movie from our latest unusual suspect andi mac who is part of a community in lurgan, northern ireland called arise which is the playground for his creativity. it's a really unique piece. here's what he said when i asked him about it...
Cloud was born out of a period of heaviness amongst the Arise community. The image that resonated was of a dark cloud resting overhead. Then looking at the imagery in the Bible of a cloud as a sign of the presence of God, of reassurance and guidance, the video "Cloud" was born. You could use it as a loop in the background (would look excellent playing through a stack of old fashioned 60's TV's) but probably most likely to be used as stand alone video. Could be used for exploring themes of commitment, guidance, going through periods of darkness. The main element at the beginning and end of video of the people walking with clouds overhead is based on the urban commute, that sense of dreariness that seems to hang over everyone on their way to work.
[you can preview it in the media player on the proost site]
this cyclist awareness ad is the best i have seen in a while...
i can't quite believe we're almost in holy week... where did lent go?
anyway i'm sure the blogosphere will be full of creative reflections and links to accompany the journey this year. so to get the ball rolling have a look at holy week reflections from lifewords. jeremy williams at short film in worship put me on to this. there's is a movie/animation/reflection for each day. just click on the day number to watch the movie. i don't know what the deal is with downloading them. but if you use flock (as i do) the way i find out the address of flash movies is as follows:
click on tools - page info - select media tab - highlight the animation and you can see where the movie url is. so day 2 is at http://www.sgmlifewords.com/easter/films/easter2.swf - then click file - save as and you can save that animation so you don't have to be online to watch it. i assume that this is an ok piece of info to pass on?... if you don't use flock, find your own work around - see the source code to find the url etc...
anyway that's eight short movie reflections right there...
i have put together a movie with jon birch to go with our track space and time. it's a pretty simple idea - photos of empty seats, chairs and benches to invite the viewer to sit in god's presence and take some space. we made it thinking about lent being a time to focus on prayer. i also thought it would go well as part of my exhibit but having put it next to the photo have decided the photo is more powerful on its own.
jenny is doing a national series of training days for urban saints on contemplative prayer. and so we've recorded three tracks of her leading prayer/meditation exercises - an ignatian examen, a stilling exercise and a breathing prayer. these go to make up the contemplative prayer EP.
these are this month's proost releases and ideal for lent. you can watch and/or listen to samples in the media player. check the list of ideas on the front page of proost for other ideas.
am off to norway tomorrow for the first time for a couple of days to do some youth ministry training. looking forward to it...
this is a hard hitting ad on anorexia - might be a good discussion starter if you are in youth ministry
in february 1998 i visited palestine/israel. what i saw and heard shocked me and when i returned i recorded an angry sad album backbone telling the stories of those encounters. backbone is still one of the albums i am most proud of (and has sold the least copies!!!!).
the track is sung in two halves. the first is sung by me as a zionist jew returning to the promised land, seeing the palestinians as the equivalemnt to the canaanites to be driven out in the name of god. the second half is sung by jon as muhanna arab, a palestinian i met who had seen his house and land destroyed and then lived in a beaten up caravan which was regularly stoned by the settlers. he also sings of ibrahim who we met - i have a stone from his house that had been bulldozed by israeli soldiers after spending 5 years building it. he asked us to take a stone to remember and tell the story. the chorus is 'there's no place like home'.
sadly it seems very little has changed in nearly 10 years. this video brought it all back to me...
i was reminded of scroobius pip and dan le sac's letter from god to man yesterday. joel posted the text to it on the lent blog after we saw them. anyway it was featured in home's nine celebration this year and matt sent me a link to the youtube video of it... and you can listen to it on their myspace page
i have decided to add this as worship trick 22 in the third series...
i picked up this link via steve taylor's blog...
andy michael made three movies for advent last year for jacob's well community in kansas and they are really good quality (the kind of thing we could easily put on proost) and free to download. i think the first is my favourite. i am currently reading tim keel's book intuitive leadership. i've met tim a few times on visits to the US so. he is also at that community so that was a neat connection. i'll blog about the book when i finish it or when i get time!
on the subject of movies, bob carlton sent me a link to this quirky wonderful video vittorio cosma - passo - dopo passo . the blog that this is from no fat clips looks jam packed with stuff if movies is your thing. if you find any good ones if you have time to trawl through let me know in the comments.
[note: all these movies are fairly large]
i noticed via marko that youth specialties have made available the videos they used at the nywc for free download. it includes a family tree from adam to jesus that may come in handy for advent, a 360 panoramic loop of london in the day shot from the top of st pauls cathedral i assume, and some amusing church signs... i am adding them as a worship trick as i am sure they'll be useful in worship at some point!...
josh lyon sent me a link to animoto, which will take photos and music and create a neat movie for you. however the free movies are just 30sec long. here's one i made earler! if i were to use this and pay for it which is conceivable here's what i'd want...
a) variety in the transitions etc in the movies so they don't look too routinised too quickly.
b) the ability to download my movie in a decent resolution so that i could show it in a presentation (i.e. at least 640x480). it looks like this feature may be coming.
a neat idea with lots of potential...
at the official opening of cms house today i was asked to lead an audio visual meditation on the hinge point in the service between looking back and celebrating cms past and looking forward to the future and the changes ahead. a few people have asked where the video etc was from so i am posting it here so i can point people to it...
the video was dayvan cowboy by boards of canada which i did make a worship trick a while back. you can download it from warprecords free or get the dvd free with the EP that you can order from the same page. the text of the piece was as follows. i read it such that the line about looking into the future is before the parachutist comes through the clouds, and the baptised line fitted with him falling into the ocean...
god crossed a border, a boundary
left his world to go on a journey into ours
the word became flesh and moved into the neighbourhood
dwelt among us
we stand in a long line of ancestors
of risk takers
of those who dared to take the adventure
of following christ
to leave their known world
step off its edge
free falling with god
into unknown futures
and new worlds
to share the story of christ
and plant the seed of the gospel
as the father sent me so i am sending you
the story has been passed to us because of those
now we stand looking out into the future
will you dare?
will you dream?
will you risk?
will you follow?
will you leave your known world?
will you freefall with god?
will you join christ in the adventure?
will you be baptised into god's mission?
will you rise to surf with god into the future?
will you trust the spirit?
far we have come far must we go
here we are send us
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where i come across creative ideas, liturgies, movies, music tracks, service outlines or anything that strikes me, i add them as worship tricks. i started these in april 2002 when i first began blogging and they have built up over the years so that i am now on the third series. this has proved a pretty popular feature of the blog.