This article is continued from our series about Lighting up your performance, click here to see the previous article on this topic or click here to view the entire list of articles.
Blinders are intense lights that shoot out at the audience seemingly lighting up the whole venue. The lights momentarily “blind” you hence the name of the effect. These are normally set up behind the band or on both sides of the stage pointing directly into the audience. Don’t leave those on too long otherwise your effect is too intense and it becomes annoying for the audience.
Strobes are intense white lights that flash fast and are used in short bursts during the performance to create the dramatic effect of slow-motion or during a crescendo or short drumming feature during the piece. Don’t use for more than a few seconds otherwise it can also become annoying.
Lasers are another perfect effect. You can place a couple of lasers behind the performers pointing up in diverging directions (like a V shape for example) and combined with fog will create a really awesome effect.
9. Moving heads
Moving heads are a fantastic option to add to your performance. They add movement, colour and shapes (gobos) to the overall effect making it look like a top notch production. You can place two or four moving heads on both sides of the stage around or behind you. The ideal way to program them is mirroring (see more about that in our previous post about lighting control shortcuts). They can rapidly change colours and direction as well as point to the backdrop and project gobos (shapes) which could rotate or prism depending on the capabilities of the moving head you’ve got.
Moving heads are typically more expensive than the average lighting fixture, so you can hire them if your budget does not allow it.
If using moving heads, smoke would really make the effect even more impressive.
10. Who’s in Control?
Most intelligent stage lights have DMX control capability on board and advanced control features on offer. A lighting technician or designer is usually used to operate the lighting rig in much the same way as a sound engineer, however there are simpler options. Running your lights sound active can look superb while some bands synchronise their lights to a drummer or keyboardist’s midi click track. Sound active can have its limits however and cannot be used with all types of music. It mainly applies to music with higher tempo and a good share of bass.
And Finally: Get Creative!
The best thing about lighting up your band or performance is that there are no hard and fast rules to follow. Creativity and practicality are the best ways to ensure that your band not only looks the bomb but also enhances the overall show. When the bands rocking out and the light show’s in harmony with the whole performance, it’s almost like a religious experience.
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