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Multimedia position filled: Video Productions

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This school year one of the new faces among the FC staff is Video Productions teacher, Evan Christensen.

Christensen will be filling a void that has been left in that position since the previous Video Productions teacher, Michael Ogden, left at the beginning of last year. Christensen also currently works as the Head Media Director for Peoples Church, a position that he has had for five years.

Originally from Southern California, Christensen?s first time living in Fresno was when his whole family moved here when he was 15. After graduating high school from Clovis West in 2000, Christensen decided to go to Fresno State and attain a degree in Electronic Video Production. After he accomplished that feat, Christensen felt a call from God to become a pastor.

At the age of 24, he started attending Fuller Seminary in Pasadena, where he attained his Masters Degree and became an ordained minister. Unsure of what to do next, and with no job opportunities in Southern California, Christensen decided to move back to Fresno.

“I sort of found myself thinking about what I should do next and I didn?t have any particular prospects at the time,” Christensen said. “So I moved back to Fresno and ended up working part time at Peoples Church.”

Although at first he was averse to the idea of working at a church, and even more averse to working at Peoples Church, Christensen?s mind was changed and he accepted a full time job there.

“The irony is that when I moved back to Fresno and I was looking for work, I was thinking that I don?t want to work for a church at all, and when I heard about Peoples Church I would say that I definitely didn?t want to work there,” Christensen said. “But after the opportunity for a full time job presented itself I took it and it has ended up being a really good fit.”

During the past five years of his employment at Peoples, Christensen has been the Head Media Director, while also filling several other roles at the church.

“I am the Media Director of Peoples Church, so most of what I do is create video content for our weekend gatherings,” said Christensen. “So I shoot and edit a lot of video during the week and create content that will be played for our worship songs, and lyric videos and things like that. I?m also on our creative team with our lead pastor here at the church and I?ve also been ordained through the church for pastoral duties as well.”

After hearing that the video productions class at FC had been primarily taught by coaches or physical education teachers in previous years, and knowing that the position was going to be up for grabs in the upcoming school year, Christensen asked Superintendent Jeremy Brown if he would be a good fit for the job.

“I just texted Jeremy Brown, who I knew was going to be the new superintendent, and I asked him what he thought about me being the new video guy at FC,” Christensen said. “I didn?t hear back for like a month and I just thought that it wasn?t going to happen. Then two days before the semester started they ended up giving me the job, so I kind of just fell into it.”

Although he has never formally taught in a classroom setting, one of Christiansen?s roles at Peoples Church consists of teaching volunteers the ins and outs of shooting video.

“Often I train volunteers to run our cameras and equipment for Sunday and any other outside events that we might be doing.” Christensen said. “I enjoy teaching people how to work with cameras and how to do all of the other things that go with shooting and editing video.”

With this love of teaching and occupational experience in his back pocket, Christensen hopes to redefine what being in video productions means and to educate his students on how to create an environment of creativity and cooperation, while also instructing them on how to make technically sound videos.

“Our mission this year is to change the video culture at FC,” Christensen said. “It?s going to be a culture of excellence and teamwork and cooperation. This starts by getting the basics down. This includes camerawork, and how to shoot something, and how to work together with other people.”

Freshman Matthew Casey, a first year video productions student, talks about what this “video culture” looks like from inside the class, and about what he is looking forward to learning this year.

“I like being able to figure out how to do all of the editing and all of just the simple things that we can do to make videos look better.” said Casey. “I think he [Christensen] is pretty experienced at what he does and he works with us and teaches us very well.”

In the long term, Christensen hopes that he can teach his students how create projects that they themselves think of and that they can do this at a high rate of quality.

“My ideal situation is that by the end of the year I?m just facilitating a bunch of talented young filmmakers and my students can do what projects they want to do,” Christensen said. “Hopefully by that time everyone in the class will feel totally empowered to individually come up with concepts and execute them, and be able to do this really well.”

Follow The Feather via Twitter: @thefeather. This writer can be reached via Twitter: @NickFontes1.

For more features, read the Sept. 29 article, Annual event encourages students to pray, worship as one

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