Many youth workers use PowerPoint, MediaShout, or other presentation software in their ministry to display sermon/talk notes, song lyrics, game slides, etc.  The truth is, I have seen some BAD media over the years in youth groups.  It's easy though, when pointed to the right resources, to take your presentations to the next level.  There are two quick ways to spice up your visuals - fonts and backgrounds.

Let's cover fonts first.  A lot of youth workers will build their presentations using only the fonts that are preloaded on their computer.  Here's a simple slide I made using "Comic Sans" - the go-to font for children's and youth ministries:
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It's not awful, but there's certainly room for improvement.  Let's see what we can do if I take a few minutes to download a free font from one of the MANY websites that offer them.  My favorite is www.1001freefonts.com

Now, here's the same slide, but I switched the font to a free one I found called "Dead Secretary" (not crazy about the name):
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A HUGE improvement!  Downloading a few eye-catching font sets will vastly improve your presentations and add some flair to what could be some drab visuals.

Here's a few more quick font tips:

1. Don't be afraid to use two different fonts in a presentation (NO MORE THAN TWO!).  Use an elaborate font for the title/headline, and another easier-to-read font for the body.  For example, type your Scripture up using a large, elaborate font for the reference (i.e. John 3:16), and a smaller simpler font for the text.

2.  Try moving the font around on the slide.  Align it left, right, center, top, and bottom to see where it is the most eye-catching.

3.  If it works, make the font slightly transparent.  Allowing a little bit of the background to seep through can add some texture to your words and makes it look more like a custom graphic instead of something you typed up on your own.

Good luck, and get creative!
 
 
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Thought I'd post a few great downloadable church media websites for you.  These sites provide videos for multiple uses - message illustrations/intros, worship transitions, just for fun, etc. A lot of them also offer free monthly downloads if you subscribe to their newsletters, so it's definitely worth checking out!

This list isn't exhaustive, but it does contain sites I've used as least once or twice.

Bluefish TV
Igniter Media
Highway Media
The Work of the People
Sermon Spice
Worship Films
Student Life

- Tim B.