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Remember transparency projectors? They were some sort of wizardry that let you project transparent slide sheets on the wall so people could follow along with the songs the worship leader was singing.

I remember being impressed when I was a kid by this one transparency operator. He had flair. He would whip one sheet off with a flourish of his wrist then add the next one seamlessly. He?d even do the ?end credit scroll? technique where it seemed like an endless supply of lyrics. The guy was ahead of his time.

This guy took what was intended to be a practical tool and made it art ??even though it was a bit distracting.

But I think there are ways to use even our modern tools in a more creative way to take our worship slides further. Here are a few concepts.

Lyrics Aren?t Always Necessary

I personally believe, a chorus of ?ohs? doesn?t need to have a slide. I catch on pretty quickly to the next lyric when it?s a round of 50 melodic ?ohs?. But I believe there are even other times when lyrics are unnecessary on your lyric screens, like when we’re singing actual words.

If it?s a hymn that?s fairly well known, leave the lyrics out. If it?s a simple chorus that repeats over and over, leave the lyrics out. If it?s a part of the song where you?d prefer people listen and let the lyrics soak over them, leave the lyrics out. You can actually be intentional about not having lyrics in order to make a stronger point.

In lieu of lyrics, you could put a single picture or a long-play video on the screen. Or just remove all visuals altogether along with the lighting. Go dark.

Just be intentional when you display?lyrics and when you don?t.[quote]Be intentional when you display?lyrics and when you don?t.[/quote]

Lyrics Don?t Have to Be Just Practical

Lyrics don?t just have to be so people can sing along. You can make them beautiful too. Get creative with typography. If you need ideas, just search ?creative typography? on Google. You don?t need to make it distracting. But when the occasion is right, do something awesome with your lyrics.[quote]Lyrics don?t just have to be so people can sing along. You can make them beautiful too.[/quote]

Maybe choose one word from the chorus and make that the central focus. Or rotate one word that?s repeated and let the changing text grow off that word.

Go simple most of the time. But every now and then the occasion will come along where you can go a bit crazy.

Again, just be intentional whatever you do.

Visuals Can Be Paced

Finally, one of the best concepts you can use in your worship slides is the idea of pacing. Start thinking of your worship service as one big story instead of just a bunch of random songs. The energy and feel doesn?t have to be the same throughout the whole set or even through a whole song. Take the group of songs as an ebb and flow of energy, and let your visuals match.

Choose still images for parts of the set. Choose bright visuals for another. Choose a black background for still another. Or set a 30-second-long transition between a dark visual and a bright visual during a bridge that goes from dark to light.

Tell a story with your visuals by pacing the energy. Don?t let it be distracting; let it enhance what?s going on in the worship service. Do for the eyes what the music does for the ears.[quote]Do for the eyes what the music does for the ears.[/quote]

I believe we?re just scratching the surface of?what can be accomplished visually in our churches. We just have to use the tools to tell stories and to enhance, not distract. I believe there?s power there.

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One reply on “3 Concepts that Will Take Your Worship Slides Further”

I couldn’t agree more, Jonathan! Good visuals can make worship better, bad visuals can kill it. I’ve been doing most of what you’re suggesting, some weeks I spend up to 10 hours designing the best possible backgrounds (still or motion or layered together) for the set of songs. I’m not a professional designer, I learned everything by doing it and checking out many tutorials. My goal is to enhance the music with my visuals to help people to enter God’s presence. Oh yes, I don’t project the “Oh-oh-ohs”, either.

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