“WOVEN: How God Shapes Us Through the Events of Our Lives” will be a month long series at Elevation Church.
Although more hours went into this artwork than I have ever done on a sermon series, the process for this was quick, we went from series concept to finished artwork within five days.
Here is a quick overview of how everything was processed:
1.Miles Paludan emailed the team for ideas based on a series about different Bible characters and the events God took them through to shape them to be the people He wanted them to be.
2. The Team responded with title suggestions. Here were some of them: Tapestry, Timeline, Interwoven, Uncommon Calendar, Indelible.
3. Speaking with a few people, Abbi Paludan (my go to if I need a faster response from Miles) suggested that I reduce ‘Interwoven’ to ‘Woven’. Miles agreed. Waiting for a response from Ross Abraham I got a little impatient so I just started on the artwork concept for Woven, in this process ‘Woven’ was agreed upon.
4. The Typeface: As always I like to have clarity in my designs and searching for a new typeface with clarity and a sense of timelessness every series can be tiring, nevertheless I still wanted to do something I had never done before. After watching the documentary ‘Helvetica’ I remember Paula Scher’s words of ‘illustrating the type’. I chose Avenir (to extend the visual identity of the Church) as the base and to go from there. When talking about weaving people will generally think handwritten/calligraphy typefaces. I’ll be real, if I want something to look like handwriting, I would write it myself, not get a typeface to mimic it!
4. Drawing: I started with this overlapping idea of lines on top of the typeface. and sometimes overflowing outside of the typeface to the edge of the page.
5. Taking it further: The concept obviously had to be done with string, seriously, calling a series ‘Woven’ and not having string, cliche but still, had to be done. So I traced the typeface onto chipboard with a white laminate, nailed 350+ pin nails into the outlines (which was very painful) and then intertwined dark red (carrying the visual identity of the church) string through the letters (with the help of my sister Jayde). The red string could also represent God’s scarlet thread through time.
6. Where the computer comes in: Anyone can open up photoshop and tinker away but the thing is (get ready for your mind to be blown), the latest version of ‘whatever program’ won’t make you or give you the principles to be a designer. The piece was then photographed, colour graded, treated and aligned in photoshop.
Reflection: Though the lines of strings intertwine in a chaotic way, they form a clean, legible word. This is similar to our life — the events that appear chaotic and unexplainable actually form a larger picture. God’s design for your life pulls together every thread of your existence in a magnificent work of art. Every thread matters and has a specific purpose.
The Artwork is available for free personal use: You can download the print, desktop and mobile versions here.
Okay so I should have posted this a few days ago but here it is:
As we gain years, there is an expectation to be a growth logically. We are suppose to progress in life and we are living in a time at the high noon of progress but the shadow of the inner ache of loneliness lingers and haunts. It seems to be a struggle within that Henry David Thoreau said, “most people live lives of quiet desperation”.
Thomas Wolfe once said, “The whole conviction of my life now rests upon the belief that loneliness, far from being a rare and curious phenomenon, peculiar to myself and to a few other solitary men, is the central and inevitable fact of human existence”
Now if you know that Thomas Wolfe was a secular voice who didn’t know the love of Christ, here are some words that are more sharp and you’ll be surprised where they come from.
“Out in the cold I stand, looking on at the world sitting tight, with its people in their nice little worlds, and the friends who don’t even know me. It really makes no difference to their world where I am. If I’m there, it keeps going. If I’m not, it goes on. While I walk around, wandering, wondering, my mind a mass of mixed-up machinery, clashing with conflicts and unanswered questions. I don’t ask the world if it is real- It sits up there on its foundations, secure, concrete, hard, stone and real. But maybe I’m not real or if I am, maybe I shouldn’t be. They answer, ‘Smile, God loves you’, but I can’t smile. I’m numbed by cold inside and out. Even the heat in the square brick buildings. Would only warm my body, nothing else. I’m alone in a world full of people, apart, shut up inside myself, cold, unfeeling, in a cold unfeeling world.”
This was found by a professor of theology at Wheaton College from a student who wrote this down during a lecture and walked out of there.
The trouble with most of us men is that we are unwilling to admit it, because it renders us vulnerable to share that we have this desperate sense of loneliness.
Jesus even went through loneliness, in the Garden of Gethsemane, where three times He comes to His disciples and says, “Is it not possible for you to stay awake with me for these last few moments of my life”. And that sudden pang of loneliness even came to Jesus.
Loneliness is real, it is pervasive, it is endemic — the Bible tells us about, experience teaches us. It is a emotional estrangement, emotionally being orphaned, there is a sense of being cut off. For some it comes in moments, for others it’s a way of life.
Now here is the common answer: If only you knew that God loves you, you would not feel lonely. If only you had a family that loved you, you would not feel lonely.
May I dare to challenge that that statement! Let’s give it greater circumference with some context.
Yes. Love is what we need. It was interesting that Bertrand Russell who was such a brilliant writer, one of the brightest minds of his time who wrote against things Christian admitted that one of the deepest longings of his heart was the longing for love and he never found it.
Let’s look at the concept of love. C.S Lewis beautifully describes four kinds of loves in his book ‘The Four Loves’.
Agape: Love of God / Storge: Parental love / Phileo: The love of friendship / Eros: Romantic love
These four break down into four types of love:
• Need Love: Wanting to belong, held.
• Gift Love: Giving of ourselves to someone.
• Need Pleasure: Pleasure you can prepare for, such as a cool glass of water after exercise.
• Appreciation Pleasure: Surprise pleasure such as suddenly seeing a beautiful sunset.
As these four ideas of experience are lived out and wrestled something arises. C.S. Lewis says: “In this struggle for existence, something is missing. Something is missing in this quadrant here. Four aspects which I understand, it didn’t just pull it together for me, I suddenly realised something was missing. Then it dawned on me almost like a flash in the inward eye. What I needed was an appreciation love. Because need pleasure is momentary, need love is selfish, gift love can be given and be momentary and you can move on, and even an appreciation pleasure can be like a flash of a moment and it’s gone. What I need is a posture in my life, a life of appreciation love, which forever lives with gratitude.”
That is the missing element, and loneliness is only dealt with when a life understands what appreciation love is and that appreciation love only comes in worship.
In the world there is no more appreciation love, when you’ve got nobody to thank, there is no worship, when there is no worship there’s a vacuum within the human heart. The vacuum is filled not just in making God your Saviour and Lord, it is filled in worship which is seeped in gratitude. The older you get, the more is takes to fill your heart with wonder and only God is big enough to fill that heart of ours.
Need love cries out to God out of our heart’s poverty. It comes to God and says, “Have mercy on me”. Gift love comes to God out of service and says, “I want to give you my life”. Appreciation love comes to God and says, “How excellent is Your name in all the Earth” in worship. When you see an attractive potential partner; need love says, “Wouldn’t it be great if I could have her/his love and share my life with them”. Gift love says, “I would love to serve them with my love”. Appreciation love says, “Even if they never belong to me he/she’s still a lovely person”. When you see that in a woman you call it admiration, when you see that in a man you call it adulation, when you see that desirability in God you call it worship.
Only those who have moved from need love to gift love to appreciation love have been able to deal with the problem of loneliness. A person who knows that God has provided his/her strength in life, is a person who can whip the problem of loneliness. If you can not worship God in the aloneness of your life I suggest that you will never be able to deal with the problem of loneliness.
I hope the light turned on for you as it did for me, that in my worship I bring my need love to God, I bring my life as gift love to Him. And in appreciation love/worship as your lifestyle, God will counter that pang of loneliness.
G E N E R O U S is a 3 week series on giving at Elevation Church Australia.
Firstly I have never struggled so much with what seemed to be such a simple task and I’m not quiet sure on the final product just yet.
Talking about money in Church can be one of the trickiest subjects — and artwork can sometimes speak louder than words. After looking for ‘inspiration’ (something to copy) there was seriously nothing good, or things that were far too cliché.
My initial thoughts were “maybe just incorporate the colour green to evoke ‘life - growth - money’” and use type on top. So after drawing it out (yes with an actual pencil) and then putting it into illustrator this is what came out…
Yuck how gross does that look!
So I threw it out. Starting again, thoughts that came were ‘expansion - breakthrough (space) - movement’
So I thought of the idea of comets moving through space but after showing a few close people (none of whom liked it because they didn’t get the thinking behind it) I decided to move on. If you’re wondering how I did this, the comets are actually balls and the white strokes are actually shadows that have been inverted and colour graded.
I really liked the typedesign I had done in the comet artwork so I decided to stick with it and I liked the spacing, evoking a sense of expansion and movement — but the comets had to go.
I spoke with a friend (the intelligent Alex Bull) about the idea of expansion and she spoke of maybe some explosion, explosion of colour. So we looked around for ideas on how to blow up paint buckets but it was simply too expensive for the project to experiment with such mediums (explosives). I was still stuck on the idea of an explosion (or just the evoking of it) so after searching through some copyright free material I found what you currently see in the artwork background.
A few of the comments on the artwork I have heard is that it looks like a flower, which I don’t mind because a blooming flower can be a symbol of growth and breakthrough — which links to some of my previous thoughts on the artwork about growth and life. I stuck with red because it carries through the brand identity of Elevation Church.
If you wish to have a copy of this artwork: either the full resolution images or the edit files free of charge:
Remember you’re far happier giving than getting…
Christopher Campbell 2013.
Okay I read, I know, how nerdy?! Sometimes I read just for the beauty of language and it’s ability to communicate ideas — weird to some, I know. One day I hope to write a book, the subject on which I still haven’t a clue. Maybe the book will have something to do with my hatred for Comic Sans, coloured fairy lights and my ‘love’ for Emma Watson.
Here’s a list of 13 top books that stood out to be throughout my reading adventures in 2012…
1. Designing Brand Identity: third edition
This book should be chained to anyone in a ‘Branding Team’ which means pretty much if you work. If you work, you’re in the branding team because every staff/team/cast member is a part of the brand.
2. Creating Magic: 10 Common Sense Leadership Strategies from a Life at Disney. - Lee Cockerell
Just get it, he worked for Disney looking after around 50,000 staff (cast) members, I think he knows a few things about how to lead people.
3. Kevin McCloud’s Principles of Home: Making a Place to Live - Kevin McCloud
This book should be made compulsory reading for anyone involved in the creating a ‘home’, which is pretty much everyone. With all the pictures it hardly feels like you’re reading.
4. The Architecture of Happiness - Alain de Botton
Brilliance on paper, I will read anything by Alain de Botton just for his beautiful use of language. This carefully argues why we as humans favour certain architecture styles over others. He also explains how we as human beings are drawn to forms/characteristics that we wish we processed in our very being.
5. I, Issac, take Thee, Rebekah: Moving from Romance to Lasting Love - Ravi Zacharias.
Now I’m not currently dating but this was an incredible read and I recommend it to anyone who wants to do life well, especially those looking into marriage or who are currently married. If anything I learnt that: “Love is much a question of the will as it is of the emotion and if you will to love someone you can”.
6. Christ and the Media - Malcolm Muggeridge
Even if you’re not a Christian this extremely short books (which is actually just the transcripts to three lectures) gives incredible perspective and a ‘big picture’ view into the world of media, it’s purpose, it’s dangers and our responsibility. Muggeridge tells a rememberable story of the cameras power over an execution that was suspended because the camera battery died.
7. On Love: A Novel - Alain de Botton
As said before, I’ll read anything by de Botton. This short read beautifully articulates the very thoughts many of us experience when beginning romance.
8. Recapture the Wonder - Ravi Zacharias
Zacharias, again, genius and I would count him as a ‘C.S Lewis’ of our day. I recommend any of his books, or if you can stand his semi-indian accent, his podcasts: “Let My People Think” and “Just Thinking”.
9. Deep & Wide: Creating Churches Unchurched People Love to Attend. - Andy Stanley
This was actually I suggested read. Being on staff at a church, this book was ‘Amen, Hallelujah’ kind of response book, none of this old, awkward and freaky church-y business.
10. How to be a Graphic Designer without losing your soul - Adrian Shaughnessy
Okay if you’re not a graphic designer, don’t bother reading this (the layout will probably annoy you). If you are a graphic designer (or even one who works with a graphic designer, this is a great read and will probably reduce you (or your graphic designer friend’s) chances of performing villainy such as murder or using comic sans.
11. Branding Faith: Why some Churches and Nonprofits Impact Culture and Others Don’t - Phil Cooke.
This book wasn’t so much an “eye-opener”, more like a ‘I wish I could shove this into a few people’s heads’ kind of book.
12. A to Z - Massimo Vignelli
Vignelli is pretty much my design hero, he’ll tell you how it should be and that “the life a designer is a life of fight, fight against the ugliness, just like a doctor fights against disease. For us, the visual disease is what we have around, and what we try to do is cure it somehow with design”. I recommend reading the previous quotation in an italian accent, it makes it a lot more official.
13. The Artist’s Way - Julia Cameron
A three month course on how to be more creative — pretty much, don’t be afraid to be wrong, go out on inspirational (artist) dates (by yourself), do brain drain (journalling, without a filter) and learn to be a child again. Okay so maybe don’t buy it and just take the previous advice. Oh and yes, Julia Cameron use to be married to James Cameron (producer/director of Avatar/Titanic)
Visual Graphic: Fonts sites and collections -
All I want is freedom ❤ liked on Polyvore
Catastrophe of Introversion ❤ liked on Polyvore
photo ❤ liked on Polyvore