God isn't bland. The Church shouldn't be, either.
Simple Way to Pitch Creative Concepts to the Pastor

Your pastor casts vision. It becomes our job to creatively communicate that vision (or church initiative, sermon series, small group curriculum, etc.) I imagine it’s hard for pastors to trust their vision in the hands of others, so my approach of pitching creative direction is ever-evolving.

Here’s an idea that is most helpful to those of us who work in a really high-paced environment because it saves me hours of time for each new idea – without sacrificing quality.

I’ve tried everything from starting with literally a hundred ideas and drilling down to a couple… to pitching a few good ideas with rough mock-ups… to presenting creative ideas with no imagery at all – only thoughts and concepts on paper.

When all of those failed, including spending hours and hours of creative energy with teams of highly creative people, I went back to the drawing board.

I should clarify what I mean by “failed”. It seemed that our senior pastors were never fully satisfied because their ideas were not coming to life, and our creative team wasn’t fully satisfied because we felt like our best ideas were either never chosen or watered-down

Smashing Magazine Calendars

A couple of months ago, I was doing some creative research for some ideas for a new church-wide branding video. I wanted to find a way to present ideas that kept them conceptual – including energy/tone, font style, color schemes, trends, etc. I started searching through the Smashing Magazine monthly desktop wallpaper calendars.

These calendars are great for several reasons:

  1. They are always widely varied since they come from different designers all over the world.
  2. They are pretty conceptual and consistent because they’re simply calendars – not tied to any other use.
  3. They are current, and if you’re looking for an idea to fit a particular season – just search that time of year.
  4. You have 60-80 choices every month (plus months/years of archives).

I printed probably 40 different calendars for the purpose of choosing an art direction for this video. I taped them all to the conference room white board in an order that kept everything categorized (i.e. super trendy together, minimalist design together, warm and cozy together, etc.)


The result was amazing! Not only did we land on a direction and I learned what my pastor liked – I learned what he did NOT like and why. I only presented ideas I was comfortable with my team executing, so I had no fear going into the conversation.

I felt empowered, and he felt heard.

More inspiration

Smashing calendars have become a wonderful tool for me, but we also still use magazines, tv and movies, websites, other churches… the list could go on and on… for inspiration to reach our church also.

What about you?

Today’s post was written by Katie Persinger (@mrspersinger), Cleve’s wife and Communications Director for The Chapel.

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  1. Danny Bixby (Reply) on April 6th, 2010

    Neat concept. I like it, thanks for sharing :)

  2. Stacy Goebel (Reply) on April 6th, 2010

    I think, too, that every success you have like this breeds more trust.

    Love it!!

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