A Wall of Colour: Bringing A Church Stage Design To Life

A Wall of Colour
Once a year the Jesus Army holds a national event in the north of England called “Sheffield Praise Day”, which as the name suggests is held in Sheffield. We hire out a sports hall and this gives us some flexibility with the layout. A team gets together to design the stage and then implement it, and after seeing a CSDI post about video mapping onto boxes I thought it would be interesting to try it out.

The design
After scribbling some initial ideas onto paper I handed it over to the experts to improve – Tim, Sam, and Josh, and they worked on making the panels and designing the stage. The theme for this event was “Crossing the Line”, so Josh incorporated a walkway that enabled people to go through a door in the middle of the wall, and down to the stage.

The ideas come to life in Sketchup

The ideas come to life in Sketchup

Capture Polar software

Capture Polar software was used to pre-program the lighting

Panels for the video wall
Material: correx (a coroplast equivalent) – 8’x4′ (1200 x 2400mm) sheets cut down to 4 foot squares, 4mm thick, with a bevelled edge so the squares stand out.
2″x1″ (50 x 25mm) timber on vertical sides of each panel. Panels all held together by a metal hinge to join 4 of them together in each corner.
Attached to the main top truss by velcro straps – 10m drops 50mm wide velcro. Loops on panels stuck to strap, and screw put through strap into the wood.

The panels being made in the workshop

The panels being made in the workshop

The panels are scored along the bevel lines, and then folded back

The back of the panel – each one is scored 50mm in, and then folded back into the score so that the panel slightly protrudes

Setting up

Testing the panels at our local church

Testing the panels and fixings in our local church auditorium

rigging

The usual discussion about replacing most of the PA with moving lights

http://vimeo.com/78812362

Lighting Fixtures

  • 6x ADJ ViziBeam 5R
  • 8x Martin Mac 101
  • 6x Showtec ArcBar3
  • 1x 8cell Molefay
  • 2x 4-bar ACL
  • 6x Showtec Sunstrips
  • 2x Robe 148LT & 6-Bar Par for stage wash
  • 4x StudioDuo LED600 & 6no. CYClite for audience wash

Visuals
I’m part of a team that creates visuals for events, and this year as we had a big screen to project onto we made some videos to play before and during each meeting.

The event ident video playing while the congregation gathers

The event ident video playing while the congregation crosses the line

I was particularly keen to show something of the city of Sheffield, as some people travel hundreds of miles to sit in a hall for the day which doesn’t seem very fair. So the week before I went round the city with Viv, and made a short video which encapsulates a little of what Sheffield is like.

As the panels were square and we knew their layout it meant we could map our content accurately.

Editing knowing where each of the panels would be

Editing knowing where each of the panels would be

Voilà! It fits! Peoples happy faces mapped to each panel

Voilà! It fits! People’s happy faces mapped to each panel

We used two Barco FLM-HD20 projectors at the back of the hall behind the congregation. These are full HD 20,000 lumens beasts, and made a big difference to the brightness and clarity of video on the wall. Supplied by XL video.

The projectors double stacked for extra brightness on the panels

The projectors double stacked for extra brightness on the panels, due to the width they had to cover

Resolume Arena 4 was used to map the video accurately on each panel.

Crossing the Line
band-worship
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A family goes through the door holding one of the pieces that made up a long line for people to step over

A family goes through the door holding one of the pieces that made up a long line for people to step over

Perhaps the most powerful moment in the evening, as we remembered the martyrs

Perhaps the most powerful moment in the evening, as we remembered the martyrs

A short video of a couple of songs from the event and showing the church stage design:

Hanging Banners Stage Design – Alive Festival 2013

Church Stage design - projecting onto bannersAs winter was still upon us with freezing temperatures, snow, and polar bears, the venue for the “Alive Festival” was changed to the warm and cosy Northampton Jesus Centre. For many this could have been a disappointment, as the giant marquee we usually use adds a unique flavour to our large events. So between Tim Tecno and myself we decided to change the look of the Jesus Centre stage, and add some symmetrical hanging banners (3 either side of the main screen) which we then projected onto. The image above was taken during the song “Deliverer come set me free”.

Forgiven-editedWe also tried live video onto the banners, using a Blackmagic Intensity Pro card (HDMI in from the video mixer), and routing the feed through Resolume Arena, with some outline effects added.
IMAG Resolume capture effectsIMAG effectsWe also created some footage to project before each event to set the scene, and to showcase one of the amazing aspects of our church – its people! Made by Aidan in Cinema 4D the clip below was projected so that each photo section lined up with a banner.

And in case people wandered into the venue not having a clue what was going on (which probably accounted for half the audience congregation) then this ident made by Gideon in After Effects helped:

Comp 1 (0-00-02-06) Comp 1 (0-00-03-24) Comp 1 (0-00-04-11) Comp 1 (0-00-08-02) Comp 1 (0-00-10-12) Comp 1 (0-00-10-19)

The festival was brilliant, and all the hard work by the lighting, rigging, PA, and video crews backed up the message and the Holy Spirit’s presence.
WorshipTechnical info:
2x Christie LX605 projectors
Drapes: 5 foot wide. 22, 16, 10 foot high
Resolume Arena software (with masking and keystoning on a 2160 x 1152 composition)
Blackmagic Intensity Pro card for HDMI in
Content created in After Effects CS6, Premiere Pro CS6, and Cinema 4D (R13)