It’s The 25th Anniversary of Cooke Pictures!

…so we’re having a contest!

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December, 2016 is the 25th anniversary of launching our media production and consulting company Cooke Pictures! Over the years our team has had the opportunity to help thousands of churches, ministries, and nonprofits tell their story and make a greater impact through media. And now, it’s time for us to give back:

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How to Win on Social Media Today

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Last week, our team participated in Variety Magazine’s Entertainment and Technology Summit hosted at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. It featured representatives from the top media companies in the digital space today, all discussing what’s working and what’s not.  I asked Wendy Wong, our digital strategist at Cooke Pictures to share with our readers her key insights from the event.  Here’s her thoughts:

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Three Things You Need When Filming on Location

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Over the years, I’ve produced and directed programming on location in more than 50 countries around the world.  For everyone that spends lots of time on a film or video set – particularly in far away places – there are certain things you just don’t leave behind.  Novices could do well to learn what more experienced filmmakers consider “must have” items during a shoot.  For me?  The top 3 would probably be my laptop (I’m always writing), a raincoat, and a great bag.  In fact, I’m a little obsessive about bags and have way more than I should.  But on location, a bag is my office, so I’m not afraid to spend money for one that does what I need. So I asked some other experienced professionals what were the top 3 absolutely “must have” items they take to every location.  Here’s a few answers:

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How to Maximize Volunteers

The Lifeblood of a Church, Ministry, or Nonprofit

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One of the biggest challenges many of our clients face is maximizing their volunteer teams.  Some have just given up and don’t use them at all.  However, no matter how big your organization, you can stretch your resources and impact by bringing on motivated volunteers.  I asked Dan Wathen, our Executive Producer at Cooke Pictures about it because he’s been a church media director and knows just how effective great volunteers can be for an organization.  When it comes to creating a great volunteer team, here’s Dan’s suggestions:

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The Insanity of God – A Fathom Event

Coming to Theaters Near You...

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On August 30th, Fathom Events is showing our feature documentary “The Insanity of God” nationwide in theaters across America for one night only. How we got to this point might be a lesson in how the film business has changed and an encouragement to beginning independent filmmakers. It started as a

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How to Select a Great Director of Photography

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I see a great number of independent movies, reality pilots, short films, and other video work from people around the world. But in the vast majority of cases, there’s one overwhelming shortcoming with the project: It just doesn’t look very good. The truth is – even in the era of inexpensive high definition and 4K cameras – the Director of Photography matters more than the equipment. If you’re a producer, director, or investor, you need to make sure the person behind the camera knows what he or she is doing. So in the interest of a more visually compelling world, here’s a handful of criteria I use to find the right DP or camera operator for my projects:

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Globalizing Your Media Means Localizing Your Media

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Whenever I travel internationally, I’m always surprised to find that when watching American produced religious programming, the vast majority of programs do nothing related to local audiences.  In other words, the program open and close, structure, and even commercial spots were the exact same as the program that had been broadcast in Cleveland, Atlanta, or Tulsa.  It goes without saying that creating a commercial spot with an American phone number and a price in dollars is going to fail when its broadcast in Russia, South Africa, or Bolivia.  And yet,

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