LIGHTING DESIGN

Lighting brings a performance together and adds depth to scenes, stories, happenings and even to characters within the plot. 

Where are lights used?

When we're talking about lighting, we're primarily referring to stage lighting - which is used in all different forms across a theatre in a way. Though, let's start with the bare basics - where are lights actually used in theatre & what different types or lights are there?

A theatre lighting rig is usually composed of 4 different types of lights, these are Spots (or spotlights), Fresnel Lanterns, Flood Lights and Strobe Lights. Most theatres and touring shows are now utilizing LED RGB lights, which allow the use of the large majority of the colour spectrum, with some even offering a UV colour which can be used for effects. These RGBs can be implemented into any of the above lights, and some are merged together (like some RGB lanterns include an effects system which allows them to strobe, meaning you don't need a separate strober for effects.)

What are gobos and filters?

Gobos are usually metal plates that get inserted into profile spotlights which then display a shape such as a window or perhaps a pattern to add texture and depth to a scene. They're basically 'light templates' in simpler terms, they direct light in a certain fashion to show an image. These gobos can be combined with a filter to add colour to the image displayed as well. Filters or 'gels' are coloured sheets of plastic which are put into a filter holder / gel frame - these sheets change the colour of light which is being thrown by the lantern.

What do light designers do & what opportunities are there?

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Jobs within lighting

Here's our top resource categories so you can find what you are looking for quickly, browse relevant resources below.

Additional Resources and Software

Here's our top resource categories so you can find what you are looking for quickly, browse relevant resources below.

BBC Bitesize

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Capture Design Software

Capture allows you to experiment with lighting settings, styles & angles all from an in-build visualization software and modelling suite.

LightLabs

LightLabs is a series of digital resources created by Matt Kizer which allows you to mess with lighting from your browser, anywhere.

View Resources

Colour and Lighting

Colours add depth to your scenes and help show the mood during a performance. For example, if the scene was at night or dusk - you would possibly light the stage in a darker colour such as blue whereas you'd light it in a lighter color, such as a warm white during the day.

These colour changes are crucial to show what is happening during a scene, when the scene is taking place and to highlight both the actors and certain scenery parts during the scene's sequence.

Lighting on a Budget

Product Type
Eurolite LED PARty Spot
LED PAR Buy
Cameo Control 54
Controller Buy

These tools are extremely basic and as you begin to focus on more advanced lighting setups, you may want to look at upgrading these.

Understandably if you want to build a small rig at home for mainly testing purposes, you'd want to stick to a smaller budget. We've found some affordable lighting supplies which you can use & we've linked them up to make it easier for you to compile a list of stuff you can test with.

If any of the links no longer work, drop us an email so we can resolve that.

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