Banner stage set

In August, our sermon series was “Choose Joy.” Because of time limitation, we went with a super-simple set, just hanging banners that echoed the sermon series logo.

Usually I develop the stage independently from the sermon graphics, but this time  I went about the design of this stage backwards, by working on the video sermon bumper first. The sermon bumper is the transition video that plays between the offering and the sermon. It was a bit awkward for the speaker to walk up and start talking while the baskets were being passed so we have tried out using a sermon bumper as a transition piece.

To save time, I went to Digital Juice and used one of their After Effects Templates (called Space Threads). I altered the template so that the words reflected our theme of “Choose Joy.”

Because I don’t know how to use After Effects very well and time was limited, I chose to pretty much keep the template the way it was and change up the words. I also changed up the design of the final logo a little. Here are some screen shots to give you an idea of what the sequence looked like.



For the final graphic, I did a screen capture of one of the frames.




For the banners, I used one of the sequences, changed type sizes and overlapped until I got a look I liked. I used different parts of the sequence so that the banners could be put together and look like a swoosh crossed over from the left banner to the right banner, thus unifying the two banners.


I also changed the size and opacity of the text so that I could get two different looks, even though I was using the same After Effects sequence.

Because the banners were large, I expanded the video to the largest size possible on my Apple Cinema Display (a nice 2560 x 1440 pixels!) and did a screen capture.

I did a mock-up in Adobe Illustrator to create a to-scale drawing using a lower resolution version of the screen captures. This gave me the freedom to play with different sizes to see what would work best on our stage. (In the picture above, the people look much larger because they are standing further to the front of the stage. The people in the back are more along the same plane as the banners.)



The banners were each 10 feet wide by 5 feet high. They were output at 100 dpi, plenty of resolution for banners that would be seen from far away. We ordered them with pockets along the top and bottom. Metal rods were strung through both pockets, a small hole punched in the middle and fishing line strung to the ceiling. Without the fishing line, the banners sagged and looked terrible! Just that one fix made all the difference.

I think this was one of our fastest projects in terms of stage design!


A Yee

Angela Yee is a professional designer (graphic design, stage design, interior design — and teaches leadership skills at

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