Virginia PBS station launches weekly newscast from FX set

Richmond, Virginia’s PBS member station WCVE has debuted a new weekly news program featuring a flexible set and bold graphics package.

WCVE, which brands on air as VPM, short for Virginia Public Media, launched “VPM News Focal Point” on Feb. 24, 2022, hosted by Angie Miles.

WCVE hired FX Design Group to design and light a set for the new program that uses a blend of backlit and solid surfaces with display technology to create a flexible studio space for the new show that lets its storytelling and imagery of the region shine through. 

The set features an L-shaped desk with a gray and brown wood framework and two segments of backlit panels. 

Although the show is solo anchored, the desk allows for a variety of anchor configurations along with in studio guests and panels. 

Camera left features a large vertically mounted video panel while a row of smaller, also vertically mounted, low profile panels, all integrated by Digital Video Group, creates a curved video wall background that spans the corner of the space.

The show often uses the far left panel to showcase its logo while the curved array features segmented scenic graphics from around the region but can also display a blue branded graphic.

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The video array ends in a wide wall segment of backlit panels, with the ability to light different segments in different shades before transitioning to a narrower dark, solid wall segment with backlit reveal lines.

Additional backlit header segments and columns wrap the entire set while an additional space features a 3 × 3 low profile video wall framed out with a gray wall with backlit reveals, a wood toned shoot off wall and backlit elements with the option to splash a linear gobo across these surfaces.

The set also includes a circular standing pod desk created with a strong wood toned plinth and contrasted with open metal framework that can be positioned around the space, including in front of the set for wide shots that incorporate the empty anchor desk as well as the set walls in the background. 

The show also features a graphics package that uses a blend of clean rectangular and square elements with circular segments, the latter of which is a nod to the “focal” part of the show’s name.

The graphics from Mad Box Made use an off-white, black, bright blue and yellow color palette with various parts of the intersecting shapes serving as windows into topical and regional imagery. 

The show’s logo features its name in a sans serif with a blue circle replacing the “O” in “Point” and set inside of a black box. The typography is placed in the upper left corner of the box, leaving extra padding around on the right and along the bottom.

Meanwhile, the existing VPM News logo, which is set in a condensed typeface, is often placed outside the box to the left set flush right and with each line of that logotype aligned precisely with “Focal” and “Point.”

The show uses theme music from Red Amp Audio.

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