CFC Blog

Discussion: Best Video Editing Program

July 12th, 2013

Best Video Editing Programs Logos

After lots of hard work, you finally have all the footage needed to create your first video. It's when you sit down a look through all the footage that the problem comes to you - which video editing software is the right one? Upon searching, you will find that there aren't one or two video editing programs, but several dozen for you to choose from. One may have all the features you need, but it might be way out of your price range. Or, one might be very cheap, but has absolutely no features in it. Which one is right for you? Let us know in the comments below about your favorite (or even least-favorite) video editing software, and tell us a little bit about them. We'd love to know what your favorite program is!

Hope for Hurting Hearts Released

July 10th, 2013

Hope for Hurting Hearts, a new Christian film released by Harvest Ministries has been released today to begin premiering at churches all around the country. If you haven't heard about this new movie, here's the synopsis:

Everyone has to deal with crises in life, including Christians. And sometimes, the reality of life can seem unbearable. But we can rest in the knowledge that God loves us, He weeps in our times of pain, and He can be glorified through suffering. Narrated by Dr. James Dobson, Hope for Hurting Hearts tells the stories of how Greg and Cathe Laurie, Jeremy Camp, Nick Vujicic, and their families dealt with times of trial. Each of these individuals has stood at a "spiritual crossroads" marked by challenging and painful circumstances, and each has chosen the road of trusting, following, and glorifying God.

You will be encouraged by these intimate accounts, which give a glimpse into God's perspective on suffering, and declare that there truly is Hope for Hurting Hearts.

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If you want to premiere Hope for Hurting Hearts at your church, find out how here. Or, find out more about this movie in our new movies section. If you want to pre-order Hope for Hurting Hearts, (releasing September 3rd) go to their website to find out how!

Tutorial: Frugal Lighting Equipment

July 8th, 2013

Frugal Lighting Equipment Tutorial

For anyone looking to learn more about lighting equipment (What kind to use, how to make it, where to put it, etc.) There's a great post about all of this over on Jordan Hake's Hub Page. If you want to know more about the ins and outs of lighting, he has some great suggestions for you to try. Jordan Hake (whom we spotlighted a while back) has a number of interesting hubs and tutorials useful for film making. Be sure to read his post here to learn more about lighting techniques and tricks, and explore for more information on his page!

Interview: Pat Roy

July 5th, 2013

Jonathan Park - Interview with the creator, Pat Roy

Several years ago for my birthday, I received "Jonathan Park -- The Adventure Begins", a creation-adventure audio series produced by Vision Forum. Not really knowing exactly what to expect, I popped it in and started listening to it. About 6 months later, I owned every single album and was an avid Jonathan Park fan. Then, just about a month ago, at the homeschool conference, i got to meet the creator of this audio drama, Pat Roy, a very helpful and encouraging man. Mr. Roy was kind enough to do an interview for CFC and share some of the insights he has learned through making Jonathan Park. Please read on to hear what he has to say:

Q: First of all, can you tell us a little bit about the Jonathan Park audio drama?

A: Jonathan Park is produced by the Vision Forum. It is designed to present the scientific evidence that’s in harmony with God’s Word. Each half-hour adventure is packed with action, and follows the lives of the Creation Response Team, a group of family and friends who love to find the evidence for creation. You can learn more about it at www.JonathanPark.com

Q: What originally inspired you to go into Christian media?

A: When I was 16 years old, I got my first job at a Christian radio station. Right away I learned the power of Christian media. Think about it, if you walked up to a stranger and confronted them about their sin, and then told them they needed to repent and follow the Lord, they may put up an instant wall. Yet, with Christian media, you can go into thousands and thousands of homes simultaneously, and tell the truth without offense.

At last year’s San Antonio Independent Christian Film Academy, Stephen Kendrick recounted the story of writing the script for the movie Courageous sometimes while sitting by a pool with his laptop. He said only a short time later, he sat in a theater, and watched the very lines he wrote. Then he thought about the millions who had seen it. Then he asked the academy crowd something like, “How many Churches would I have to preach in to reach that many people?” He couldn’t preach to that many if he talked at a different Church every weekend for the rest of his life! Understand, he wasn’t downplaying the importance of Church. But I agree with him when he talks about the power of Christian media! It is the ability to reach lots of people with an eternal message!

Q:How did Jonathan Park get started?

A:My wife, Sandy, and I were both working for the Institute for Creation Research. Even though I was the radio producer there, I would occasionally go out to speak at Churches on behalf of ICR. After the presentations, my wife and I would be at the book table, and parents would often ask for materials for their children. We realized that, at the time (about 15 years ago), there weren’t many materials available to teach children about creation, and they were the ones getting hit the hardest by evolutionary thinking!

So my wife and I started praying and brainstorming about what we could do. And since we both had a background in radio, we decided to try a radio drama. ICR was kind enough to take it on as an official broadcast. And then a few years later, Vision Forum gave the project new life!

Q:What has been your favorite thing about making Jonathan Park?

A:My Favorite? I love it all! I love working with my wife as my writing partner. I love working with my family. I love that the JP team has become some of my best friends! I love recording days. I love production. I’m grateful for the chance to work with Vision Forum. But most of all, I love hearing all the stories about what the Lord has done in the hearts of so many people!

Q:And on the other side, what has been the biggest challenge in making Jonathan Park?

A:It takes a LOT of time to produce an album of Jonathan Park – more than a year of my time goes into each one (and then think about all the hours from the rest of the team). My biggest challenge is, as a husband and a father, to balance my time.

Q:What have you learned through making the Jonathan Park series?

A:Wow! That could fill a book! Of course I’ve learned a lot about writing and production, and have so much more to learn. Also, I’ve spent years of my life researching all the material on Jonathan Park – the evidence that’s in harmony with God’s Word is never-ending. I should mention that we have scientists that review every script, and I learn a lot from them. Also, my supervisor, Michael Gobart, reviews every script for biblical content – and often suggests ways to communicate spiritual truths, so I learn then, as well.

I guess I’ve also learned that it’s okay to dream big for the Lord, and if He says “no”, we thank Him for His direction. But if He says, “yes”, that He is a God of adventure, and will do things beyond our wildest imagination! I’ve also learned that God works how and when He wants. Thirteen years ago, my wife and I had no idea that our silly idea would still be going to this very day!

Q:Can you talk some about the album you are working on now?

A:This is the first album that was written entirely (except parts of the teaching) by another family. Duane and Andrew Riffenburgh wrote half the episodes in Jonathan Park and the Voyage Beyond. This father/son team did such a great job that we invited them to write this entire album. It is called, The Whispering Sphinx. And the Riffenburghs have packed more action and humor into this album than ever before. It’s an exciting adventure that will take you on a journey through Egypt. Think passageways under pyramids, motorcycle chases, cobras, mummies, boat rides on the Nile, and so much more!

Q:When is it expected to come out?

A:I believe Vision Forum plans to release it sometime in August.

Q:Just for fun, what is your favorite episode of Jonathan Park?

A:I think my favorite episode will always be Hidden Cave because it was the first big writing project with my wife. My favorite album to write was The Journey Never Taken because I enjoyed researching all the history behind evolutionary thinking. But my favorite to listen to is The Voyage Beyond. I love the high-tech submarine and the spaceship. That was also my favorite to sound-design. We have a whole team that does production (anywhere from 2 – 10 people depending on how fast we are working). I told them to make the Manta Submarine sound like a starship. And when it came to the spaceflight, it was so much fun trying to create a space launch that sounded similar to something you’d hear at NASA.

Q:And finally, what advice would you have for young people aspiring to go into Christian media?

A:Four things, I guess:

- Go for it! Dream big, but follow the Lord! If He says “no”, thank Him for it. If He says “yes”, give it your all! And at all times, hold your project with a loose grip. I’ve notice the Lord will often test us to see if we are more about following Him, or about our project! As a matter of fact, He will often kill a dream, and then rebuild it His way.

- Don’t worry if you don’t know how! When the JP Team first started, we had absolutely NO idea of how to do what we dreamed of doing. But we prayed everyday as a team, and learned as much as we could – and much of that was through trial and error. So go for it, and if you do something wrong, you’ll figure out a better way! It’s better to try and fail, so you can correct, than to never do anything at all. And remember, there is incredible power in learning from others.

- If you’re going to make a production, make it something that counts with a strong eternal message! We’ve got enough entertainment out there. We need young people who are willing to be used by the Lord to change lives!

- Remember that whatever happens, work for the Lord’s glory, not your own! At the end of your life, if you built your own kingdom, it will have no value. But using your talents for His glory… ahhhh, there’s nothing better than that!

A special thanks to Mr. Roy for taking the time to answer these questions for us. To find out more about Jonathan Park, go to www.jonathanpark.com to find out more. Also, who would you like us to interview next? Please let us know who you want us to interview next at noah@christianfilmcentral.com.

New Movie - The Redemption of Henry Myers

July 4th, 2013

Happy Fourth of July, everybody! Sorry this is a day late!

As you may have noticed, we have added yet another video to our New Movies section, The Redemption of Henry Myers. This is a new Christian film produced by Echolight Studios, which we mentioned a few days back. The synopsis reads:

Henry Myers lives a hard life. Getting through life on the frontier however he can… even if it means robbing a bank. After his latest heist goes wrong and his partners betray him and leave him for dead, Henry is surprised to find extraordinary kindness from a widow and her children. With the influence of this family, Henry begins to question the choices he’s made in his life. Just when things begin to make sense again, it’s all ripped away from him when his old partners show up. Will he seek the revenge he desires or finally find his redemption?

This looks like a very interesting movie, and it should be a lot of fun to see when it comes out. The Redemption of Henry Myers is set to premiere in theaters soon, so keep checking back to see when this new film is released. To learn more about The Redemption of Henry Myers, visit their website, or read more about in our New Movies section.

Also, be sure to check back on Friday, July 5th, for a very special interview!

Behind the Scenes: Courageous

July 1st, 2013

Today, we bring you another Behind the Scenes compilation, which is always a lot of fun to watch. One of the best ways to learn about movie making, in my opinion, is to just watch behind the scenes clips of movies and see how they do it. I've learned a lot this way, and it's definitely a fun way to learn little things about how to create good films. Today we have a compilation of behind the scenes clips from Courageous, and I really encourage you to watch these and learn. Enjoy!

Behind the Scenes - Stunts



A Look Behind the Music



Alex Kendrick Describes How He Edits



Behind the Scenes with the Cast and Crew of Courageous #1

Note - There are about 20 more of these on this Youtube channel. Be sure to check them out!

A Funny Thing (or Two) Happened During Filming...



Ken Bevel Returns to the Big Screen



The Heart of Courageous



What do you think of these Behind the Scenes posts? What movie would you like to see behind the scenes next?

Review: Olympus VN-702PC Recorder

June 29th, 2013

For anyone looking for a good recorder to use with a microphone, such as a lapel microphone, look no further than the Olympus VN-702PC. We got this recorder a few months ago to record sermons at church, and it seems to be working okay now. We had a few problems at first, but that turned out to be a problem with the sound board, and not the recorder. I also tried doing a test of plugging my lapel microphone directly into the recorder through the 3.5mm mic jack and it came through in great quality.

The recorder has a record button, stop button, along with controls to go to the menu, rewind, fast forward, etc. It has a microphone jack so you can plug in an external mic or audio source. It also contains a convenient headphone jack so you can make sure the audio quality is coming through well. It has a slider power button on the side and also a slot to plug in a Micro SD card, although it contains so much internal memory we have not had reason to buy one yet.

We've been using it every Saturday for several hours for the past few months and have not yet had to change batteries, so battery life does not seem to be a problem. If you look carefully, you can find this recorder for under $50, so it won't break the bank either. So, if you're planning on simply plugging in a microphone into the recorder for whatever reason, this recorder should work perfectly for you.

You can find this recorder on Amazon or on the Olympus website. I would recommend this recorder very highly!

Rick Santorum CEO of Echolight Studios

June 27th, 2013

Rick Santorum - New CEO of Echolight Studios

Rick Santorum, former senator of Pennsylvania, announced a few days ago that he is becoming the CEO of Echolight Studios, a Christian film company. This is a surprising change for Santorum, but it should be very interesting to see what comes of this. Santorum said in a news release, "We know the power that movies have to impact our lives, and there is a big market out there that wants films that reaffirm the values most American families share. EchoLight is a new door into that movie excellence and to more of it. This is a chance to support and cultivate filmmakers within the faith community to develop cinema for wider audiences."

Echolight Studios has made a variety of Christian films, and has a new film coming to theaters soon, The Redemption of Henry Myers. Learn more about it on our website, or find out more about Echolight Studios on their website.

What do you think of Rick Santorum going into the movie business? Let us know in the comments below!

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