A group of communicators and media professionals team up to contemplate their next move as they edit their short promo on during a cinematography workshop organized by the Jamaica Union, April 4-6, 2018, in Mandeville, Jamaica. Image by Nigel Coke/IAD

April 17, 2018 | Mandeville, Jamaica | Jermaine Johnson/JAMU Communication/IAD Staff

More than two-dozen communicators and media professionals took part in a cinematography workshop led by the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s Hope Channel Inter-America. The workshop was the first of its kind hosted by the church’s communication department in the Jamaica Union, Apr. 3-4, 2018 in Mandeville, Jamaica.

Members of the East Jamaica Conference team (L-R) Errol Vaz, Chad Smith, Phillip Castell, Ruth-Ann Brown and Leon Ffrench participate in the Hope Channel program scheduling exercise on the final day of the workshop. Image by Nigel Coke/IAD

The main objective of the workshop was to train conference and church media professionals to produce contents for Hope Channel Inter-America’s English channel.

“The workshop is very important to our union as we are lagging behind in the production of content for Hope Channel Inter-America and local cable networks operated by our church,” said Nigel Coke, communication director for the church in Jamaica. “We realized that in order to produce good contents for a global station, we need to foster a closer working relationship with all the conferences and the NCU Media Group.”

The training, which involved 30 participants from the church’s five conferences and NCU Media Group, was led by Abel Márquez, communication director for the church in Inter-America and executive director of Hope Channel Inter-America, and Lizbeth Elejalde, professor of Television at Montemorelos University, and program and production assistant for Hope Channel Inter-America. The NCU Media Group is based at the church’s Northern Caribbean University in Mandeville.

Márquez challenged the participants to think globally and produce projects that can transcend classrooms, churches and countries using any format available with whatever means of communication at hand.

Abel Márquez, communication director for the church in Inter-America and executive director of Hope Channel Inter-America challenges professionals to think globally when producing projects. Image by Nigel Coke/IAD

“Show God moving in the lives of people,” said Márquez.

Márquez congratulated union leaders for organizing the cinematography workshop in Jamaica. “This type of workshop is so valuable because Hope Channel Inter-America, in addition to expanding its collaboration network with creative teams in different countries, laid the foundation for more programs and spots to be produced for Hope Channel in English.”

Elejalde said the creativity, passion and commitment she witnessed in every group during the workshop was remarkable. “No matter if we speak English or Spanish, our mission is the same and many people are waiting for content that brings hope to their lives, so this cinematography workshop was an amazing opportunity for networking between our channel in Inter-America and the five conferences on the island.”

The workshop allowed communicators to use tools like HD cameras, DSLRs, editing computers and other equipment to be part of several activities and mini projects throughout the three-day workshop.

Workshop topics included Storytelling for Film and TV, Smartphone and DSLR Filmmaking, Designing a Strategy for Your AV Projects, From Idea to Realization, and the Design of TV Contents, which involved developing ideas for TV shows, promos and spots. It also included principles to run a cinematography production and the rules for scheduling in Hope Channel.

Presenter Lizbeth Elejalde, gives suggestions on mini features to group 4 participants (L-R) Pastors Jermaine Johnson and Danielo Daniels; Anrew Johnson and Gosford Lawrence on Day 1 of the workshop. Image by Nigel Coke/IAD

Elejalde challenged participants to find out what appeals to people around them and use it to create materials that will grab their attention to make a greater impact through media ministries.

“I believe that this is the best and most productive workshop I have attended in recent times,” exclaimed Pastor Damian Chambers, communication director of the church in Central Jamaica. “Not only because of the rich content but the activities that we participated in and the vision behind the learning outcomes. We were engaged and challenged to own and be part of producing content for Hope Inter-America.”

For Pastor Jonathan Myrie, communication director of the church’s western region, the workshop was enlightening. “The workshop has transformed my mind-set when it comes to the production process, budget, and equipment required for a world class production.” Myrie now sees program ideas are within reach. “We have also gleaned new program ideas, and how to transform those ideas into reality.”

Wendy Ann Masters, a layperson who works in the video recording industry, said the workshop was very insightful and timely. “We were inspired to take a think outside the box approach to evangelism and to be innovative with what we have.”

Group of communicators and media professionals during the two-day workshop. Image by Aldane Codling

The workshop ended with field communication and media group leaders pledging to use the training to implement several new programs and initiatives for Hope Channel Inter-America and their local fields.
Coke looks forward to seeing programs featured on Hope Channel Inter-America soon.

“NCU Media Group will be completing three series of 36 episodes after gleaning ideas and further understanding on the time required for items to fit into the Hope Channel’s specification for scheduling from the workshop,” Coke added.

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