Creating the Paradox

I thought it would be cool to run down the process that goes behind message series creation. Well, no the whole series, but the look that will go along with it.

Our pastor gave us an updated speaking schedule. Our next series is on Philippians; specifically on several phrases that Paul uses that appear to be contradictions or paradoxes. The topics include “chained yet free”, “to live is Christ, to die is gain” and “success is at the bottom”. This concept of paradox needs to visually show “duality”. It needs contrast. Maybe reflection. Light and dark. A visible divide.

This initial concepting is typically a challenge for me, and this series is no different. I needed to start with an understanding of a paradox. I reviewed definitions, read Wikipedia articles and did Google web and image searches to see if I could find anything that visually spoke to a paradox.

No luck.

I needed to start somewhere, so I tried a few typographic solutions.

I wasn’t happy with any of these directions. I just couldn’t connect with them, and I really wanted to be the one to push this forward (instead of conferring with my boss). It’s fun to own a project every now and then, and this challenge was important to me since I’m weak in this area.

I finally broke down and requested help from the Church Marketing Lab. I posted a discussion topic asking for ideas. I received only one response, but it was all I needed. One guy posted an image they had done for a series of the same name. He posted it as “creative inspiration” for me.

That was enough to get me going. I had, flitting in the back of my mind, a similar idea; using one image twice. My problem was I didn’t know how to show that contrast and duality. The CCV image was very helpful, and so simple, in illustrating the duality I was after.

Now, the line between creative inspiration and ripping-off an idea can be pretty fine. A difficult balance. I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to separate them enough, but started moving this direction anyway. I picked an image out of our stock photo library (stuff we’ve used or purchased already). I simply looked for an image that was simple, had room for text, and was easy enough to reflect.

The tree I selected was perfect. There was plenty of room for the title, and a nice clean horizon that made reflection easy.

After that, it was just playing around. I knew one needed to be light, and the other dark (duality/contrast), but other than that, I wasn’t sure what I wanted. I played with colors (that I picked with Adobe Kuler) and levels.

I landed on these three options, and submitted them to the Lab again.

The votes were an even mix, but I was partial to F. Mike (my boss) suggested removing the cross bars of the As, and we landed here.

If I skipped over any part that you want to hear about, feel free to ask in the comments.

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~ by mitchbolton on May 29, 2008.

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