Blaming The Medium
When it comes to environmental projection, projection mapping, or any other production that is heavily dependent on technology, we tend to get lost in the gadgets. We rely so much on these wonderful tools that we expect them to do 100% of the work. When in reality, the only way our technology will seem amazing, is if our content is great. Let’s avoid blaming the medium and look at some other factors that affect environmental projection.
You can have all the tools in the world, but without the right content, at the right moment, and at the right speed, it’ll all be for nothing. Environmental projection is supposed to enhance, not to distract. So to make sure we don’t put all the blame on the medium, we have to start remember that the story lies in the content.
So to make sure avoid the trap of blaming the medium, here are 5 rules to follow that will help create powerful visual worship moments, along with a life changing experiences for your audience.
Your media will appear to play faster on a larger surface.
When initially picking your content/motion, it usually takes a while to find the right one. The fact that it takes you that long means that you are intentional about what will work for your project. Which usually means you’re less likely to pick media that doesn’t relate to the feeling you’re trying to convey, so kudos to you! BUT even as we think we found the right piece of content, it just might not be that perfect one. Sometimes tiny particles move about effortlessly in the background harmlessly until you put the motion on the walls, and that tiny particle just grew ten times larger than you would like it to be. That tiny particle is now a meteor streaking across the sky at a phenomenal rate of speed. Size increases speed.
You don’t always need motions.
There is misconception that still images can’t create a transformative environment in the ways motions can, and that just simply isn’t true. All it takes for a still image to be just as powerful is the texture and the ambiance it exudes. A still image with texture adds depth to the atmosphere and allows the audience to feel immersed without being distracted by motion. In addition to that, still images are way more cost efficient. It is absolutely possible to have just as much as an impact on smaller budget.
Emotion and energy are elaborated upon with color.
With all that’s been said, there is still a third characteristic about media you need to keep an eye on: color. It has been proven by studies that color can/does evoke certain emotions from us. This is good news! With this information, we can control the literal feeling that is displayed in our projects. We can pinpoint how our audience will feel without having to go through a guessing game. This can also be very helpful when creating a media library. Color coding your library can help you know for certain what feelings will be conveyed. You can read which specific emotions are linked with each color here.
Make sure the message is stickier than the media.
If you’re using environmental projection for visual worship, the goal has to be more that a “wow” moment. The transformative environment should move people to be changed and given a space to connect with their Father. You need to evaluate every piece of media to make sure the message is being shared, is stronger than what you’re presenting. “Your media can’t be more ‘tweetbable’ than your message.” – Luke McElroy, Environmental Projection Book.
Less is more.
Along with the amazing rises and falls, speed, large text, and popping colors, at some point allow everything to get really small and intimate. Some of the greatest moments come from those quite contemplative seconds. That winding down is like a visual breath. We have to know when to turn it down so that environmental doesn’t become something so regular that no one appreciates and recognizes the climax of this art. Stillness speaks. It is its own environmental projection.
All in all, content will always be your first and last priority. It might be the shortest part of the process, but its not the smallest. Don’t blame the tech!
Content for Environmental Projection
Stop blaming the medium in your services and find great content that tells your stories. Check out the series below for the best environmental projection content anywhere!
Want to Learn More?
If you are seriously considering implementing environmental projection for a service, event, or permanent installation, then you need to get this book: Environmental Projection: The Collision of Modern Technology and Sacred Spaces from Luke McElroy (Founder of TripleWide Media.) This book takes a look at every aspect of environmental projection and walks you through the above steps in complete detail.