With the addition of flickr video, there’s a new idea floating around called “long portraits. I posted about it on my twitter account yesterday, and since then I’ve been thinking about it and what we could do with it in youth ministry.

A long portrait is basically a video snapshot that lasts less than a minute (or around 30 seconds) where you capture a single moment of a person in that time and place. It’s like a photo that can talk, where the person answers a simple question (click here for some great sample questions.) Photojojo has a great post on what it is and how to do it.

Here are some suggestions I have for using long portraits in youth ministry:

  • High School Seniors – Could talk about their last year in the youth ministry and what they learned, etc.
  • Small groups/classes – Could use long portraits to capture a key idea from the series (or year, or however long the small groups meet). Students could also talk about the one thing they remembered the most about the group.
  • Commitments or memories from camps/mission trips – Record students talking about their commitments. Have them send themselves a message to be watched again in 1 year or more. Have them tell stories about the impact the camp or trip had on their life.
  • Recruitment of volunteers – Use this idea to record students talking about how their small group leader or other volunteer in your ministry has had an impact on their life. Then show it to appreciate volunteers or recruit new volunteers.