Showing all posts tagged #video:


Volunteer Celebration

Posted on May 29th, 2019

Event Producing
The request was to find a way to show appreciation to >900 volunteers. I was offered the support of the other directors on the staff and a budget of $10,000. At first glance that sounds like a lot of money, but I had to use that for catering for dinner and desert, decorations, entertainment, awards...as well as invitations, childcare, photography, table hosting, setup, strike, dishwashing; also what presenters and MCs would be responsible for what communication...

I took survey of all the stakeholders - directors and key leaders. I learned what worked well with similar events in the past. I assembled a team of key partners whom I could brainstorm with and develop concepts. We did research to figure out what our ideas might cost. We met again and leaned into what had good value and scrapped what didn’t. We surveyed and used statistics to determine how many we thought would actually show up; and how many might. We put it on the calendar and after figuring out a brand for the night we sent out invitations. We worked through details with the caterer and the band. We made certain sacrifices from our ideal hopes, but ended up with remarkably clever innovations to our plan. We created a signup sheet for directors to own delegated chores and presented the vision to the staff with the request for ownership… In addition to my team of co-leaders, our whole staff stepped up and helped make a really special evening. The video above shows a few of the highlights.Download PDFDownload PDF


Volunteering as part of the Troy Production & Arts team

Posted on May 18th, 2018

Lot’s of you ask about what volunteering as part of the Troy Production & Arts team is like. This video let’s some of our volunteers tell you in their own words!


serving artistic leadership and the thrill of live production

Posted on March 29th, 2018

I snapped this passage from a magazine to share with my team. Beyond just being for a video director, these are good thoughts to contemplate regardless of our position - serving the artistic vision and the thrill of live production when supporting and enhancing art and communication

  • Be flexible
  • Give up your ego
  • Collaboration and comfort

  • The thrill of being live and having the eyes on your work can be quite rewarding
  • Don’t go over the top, but rather enjoy being fully in the moment
  • We get to have joy in what we produce!




Troy Live Production Volunteer Positions

Posted on February 21st, 2017

We love providing the opportunity for volunteers to use their skills and passions to support and enhance art and communication. *no experience necessary! We have four entry area options to join our team:

  • Stage Crew
    • Assistant Stage Manager
  • Audio & Lighting Crew
    • Setup of Staging & Equipment
    • Programming & Operation
  • Live Video Crew
    • Camera
    • Control Room
    • Multimedia and Graphics
  • KKids Crew
    • Audio
    • Lighting
    • Multimedia and Graphics

Please do connect with us and join our great team!



Lite Brite and Elf Houses

Posted on January 19th, 2016


There was a lot of prototyping and iteration as well as complexity in leadership of multiple departments to achieve the success in this Production Design.

The process was really fun to nerd out with research into classic toys and some surveying of people who grew up in that era. Along the way, we kept coming back to the movie Elf.

We began with an idea of what classic toys might bring nostalgia. The LiteBrite was a fun idea. I liked it for multiple reasons:
  • The chance to design with layers of texture in with the cups. The real magic for them came when we created a new template for all the video work flow to have to be inside a hexagon based grid rather than the typical square.
  • The build process of hot glue in sheets of PVC that were cut on a CNC machine was tedious, but proved to look great when the projection was focused correctly.
We design the Elf inspired Houses:
  • Minimal wooden frame
  • Cardboard and Paper
  • Visqueen and Lights

A problem became an opportunity when we figured out how to hide the set behind the main traveler and tell a prelude story based in Nepal and using chalk art to tell about partners all over the globe.Fun too, to coach blocking for a the broadcast into during the countdown. My friend snapped this photo of yours truly that he used to coach the crew in duplicating the shot composition.


Thoughts to Remember When Creating a Space for Worship

Posted on September 30th, 2014

I rattled off a stream of thought in response to my friend asking me what things I think about when designing. He took that email and compiled it into this list; which his organization now uses this as part of their planing meetings. Perhaps it is a helpful guide for you to consider as well...


Thoughts to Remember When Creating a Space for Worship

  • The end goal of the services that happens in the space.
  • The vibe/feeling you want to help communicate.
  • Who is the target demographic?
  • Who in the audience will be reached regardless of the branding, environment, and artistry? These are not people to design for. Do not be influenced by them.
  • Who might only be opened up to the communication by the environment you present? This is who you must go after.
  • How might you use resources you already have available to support your vision?
  • What alternative ideas might convey such themes with increased beauty/power/depth?
  • What ideas might work well because of how clear the symbolism might be?
  • What of those ideas would be so cliché that it would actually turn off the artist in the audience?
  • What metaphors can you weave into the design to add depth of beauty (and meaning) ...even if only for you?
  • How long do you want to live in the look? A series? A season? A weekend? Indefinitely?
  • How will you light the set? How will you light the art and communication? Will the lighting on both feel unified?
  • Make sure to design scenic elements that will be enhanced with the lighting tools available. Also, design scenic with consideration of who is designing/operating lights. Try to play to their strengths.
  • It needs to look good in the room, to be certain. Are you broadcasting ever - stream, IMAG, record for later release?
  • Lighting for video requires thinking beyond what looks good to the naked eye; and lighting for both video and still having everything look good in the room requires some real finesse…
  • Think through positioning of each person who will be on stage. Where they stand/sit/dance should feel like it connects with the scenic elements and help visually connect the guests with the communication on stage. Break the 4th wall.
  • What scenic and/or lighting might be considered in the room? In the lobby? Before and after the event with advertising, social media, etc. How does the branding transcend the stage experience?
  • Think through everything that people might see. Certainly do not let anything be a distraction; also push into every opportunity to help enhance the story...

Thoughts on Telling Story with Live Video Capture or Be Visibly Engaged

Posted on January 22nd, 2014

On my way home from our Production Core retreat, our conversation turned to the topic of how we shoot for broadcast and IMAG. We were referencing a video link we saw on Twitter that a TD from another church had posted. They took a shot of the audience that struck us as odd. A perfect example of a distraction that pulls us out of a moment. It lead to us talking about how we shot our Christmas service; particularly our candle-lighting moment…

I said something at some point that struck a coworker in such a way as he finally caught a glimpse of what I mean when I say, "use production to help tell the story."

The short version of the conversation is, I think there can be a legitimate place for taking shots of the audience - at least for broadcast. If the audience is on the side screens, it can take them out of the moment (similar to the Heisenberg effect) - Anyway, I was saying how it would be better to live on (spend longer time with the same shot of) a well composed shot of the lead singer (or the guitar player if he's playing a lead line that is carrying the moment) then to show a shot of the audience or background vocal if they are not engaged in the music and having unexpressive smile to go along with their singing. If a backing musician or section of the crowd is visibly engaged in the moment, then take the shot; if not, then definitely don't.

Furthermore, I'd encourage our Producer and leadership to step in to the leadership moment with any person on stage who isn't practicing the discipline of being visibly engaged in the moment.

Translucent Coroplast Cubes

Posted on August 10th, 2013

So I wanted to share a blog about our new design. I was alone in the auditorium, and on a whim I decided to point my phone at myself and take you on a video tour of this weekend's design.

Please excuse my stutter and the not-broadcast-legal colors. Hopefully my off-the-cuff content makes sense and the camera shots are somewhat helpful. Ask me questions about anything I wasn't clear on.


Please also give me feedback:
  • Should I do this again?
  • I know I should definitely light it differently - if I had known that I would have the thought of shooting video, I would've adjusted the lighting…
  • I'll also want to use the good camera on the back of the phone instead of the front facing camera. Biggest benefit is that I'll actually know what the shot composition is when I'm doing my walk and talk...
  • Do I change the format? This was obviously an unscripted single take with no edits. I suppose I could put some forethought into it (as I am a veteran video producer) perhaps shooting a standup, then voicing over an edited tour of properly composed shots…
  • I didn't share any typed details about the design in this post. Should I?

Eric Wolfe

Creative Director and Coach. Production Designer and Consultant. Developer of Ideas. Maximizer of Resources. Strategic Thinker. Creative Innovator. Visual Artist and Leader. Husband. Father. Philosopher. Photographer. Backpacker. Athlete. Cook. Artisan. Eric shares thoughts here about all of the above. He would love to connect to partner in coaching and revealing beauty to enhance story and experience. Please do reach out!