Spirituality and creative process are partners. Spirituality most often reveals itself to me through creative process or my experience of nature. This proved to be true as I began the challenge of communicating through this new form of artistic expression. I’ve never done much in the way of video editing. I have a simple app I’ve used. It allows me to do basic things like crop a video or add some sound: no transparencies, fading, layering, etc. It was very challenging to have a vision and discover that I didn’t have the tools or knowledge to make it come together quite the way I imagined it. But then, I’d play around, or get an inspiration, and make a discovery that said it better than I intended. I had a collection of video and still images that were inherently spiritual for me: things that pointed me to God and Jesus with simplicity and beauty. I set out to weave this “collection” together- starting with the images and video and then adding the audio once I identified my theme. Shotcut was an adventure in what’s actually possible for giving my “collection” a voice. The most magical part was when I layered the audio track to the menagerie of videos and stills. I was surprised that, somehow, I did manage to pull it all together in a way that made sense for me. It said something I had previously been unable to articulate. When I started layering other sounds with the audio track (the sounds of the birds, the wind, and other creatures), my theme became even clearer. I’ve replayed the video several times, and I find it centers me more and more with each viewing. Yes, for me, “This is God.” How rich it is to have new ways to say this and reexperience this. Spirituality and creative process partnered on this video editing journey, and I am moved by how the dovetailing of these two elements gave me clarity and greater expression.
This Is God: Moments of Beauty is my first film made using video editing software (Shotcut) to create a short film. This short film is about my spiritual journey and the role that beauty, nature, and human connection plays in it. After participating in ECVA’s (Episcopal Church and Visual Arts) four-part Photography & Smartphone Short-film conversation, I spent many hours playing with the possiblities Shotcut offers, and this is what resulted from my study. I have a long way to go before I have mastered this art, but what a wonderful introduction to all the power packed into video editing. Thanks to Jorin Hood and Sally Brower for making this exploration possible and pushing all of us to find a voice for our spiritual story through video. This video editing journey was therapeutic and inspirational. I am grateful.
Consider the power of video editing. It can be a tool for entwining spirituality and creative process in ways that provide a new and fresh voice for personal expression and spiritual experience. If this seems daunting to you, start with a simple video editing app. I’ve been using Video Guru on my Pixel 6 Pro android phone for a couple of years. I have no idea if this is the best option out there, but I find it easy to use. It does most of what I need for simple posts and show submissions. An intermediate move might be to try Shotcut. This can be used on your PC and gives you many tools and options for creating special effects and adding layers of sound, text, and imagery to your videos. This is my advice as I see it, but remember that I am a beginner. If you find better tools, please come back to Journey On Canvas Blog and share. We’d love to learn more about the power of video to better share our spiritual journey.