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Light for the stage and principles of its placement

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Art today manifests itself in a wide variety of forms. One of its frequent attributes is the price at which, for example, performances are staged in a theater or a group plays a concert. And here, the lighting itself becomes a part of art, it can and does affect the power of perception by the audience of what they see.

Stage lighting requires a competent and professional approach, which includes not only the proper placement of fixtures, but also the selection of the required equipment (spotlights, spotlights, etc.). Without this, it will not be possible to create with your own hands the illumination of the stage either in the theater, or for the assembly hall or the whole house of culture. Our today's article will tell you what you should be guided by when independently organizing the lighting of the stage of a wide variety of structures.

Principles to Follow

Stage lighting is an artificial type of illumination, but there are a large number of nuances worth knowing about. In order for the lighting on the stage of the house of cultures or the concert hall to comply with the rules and regulations, there are specific principles that must be followed. These include:

  • light lighting is not a separate element here. It serves as the basis for creating with its help a visual image. This image should emphasize in the most favorable light everything that happens on the stage of any cultural structure (assembly or concert hall of the house of culture, etc.),
  • the scheme according to which lighting equipment is placed (ceiling lamps, spotlights, searchlights, etc.) should take into account the specifics of what is happening on the stage,

Note! Stage lighting should always reflect what is happening on it. Otherwise, it will be inappropriate and will not be able to fully cover what is happening. For example, you cannot use the same lighting scheme for a rock concert and folk artists.

Concert Stage Lighting

  • dimensional assessment. For the assembly hall, the house of culture and other small venues, it is worth using not very powerful lighting equipment (spotlights, spotlights, etc.). But for huge halls a multi-level lighting system can be created, consisting of a large number of equipment,
  • lack of monotony during a performance or concert. In order to diversify stage lighting, different equipment is used. For example, spotlights, ceiling or wall spotlights, etc. In this case, it is necessary to take into account the features of the stage of the assembly or concert hall. Thanks to this principle, it turns out for a long time to keep the attention of the audience on what is happening.

It should be noted that for the house of culture and the assembly hall, lighting can be both the main and additional element. For example, when the musicians perform, the acoustics of the room will play a greater role, and the light accompaniment will be only an addition.

Stage Lighting Assignment

Focusing on the above principles, you can do it yourself do the right lighting for various kinds of performances, theatrical performances or concerts.
First of all, you need to know that the equipment used (spotlights, spotlights, etc.) must meet certain requirements:

  • create the necessary level of illumination,
  • comply with the requirements of GOST,
  • be safe for people
  • have easy maintenance
  • have a high definition backlight, which, if necessary, allows you to consider even minor details,
  • consume a minimum of electricity.

Stage Lighting Equipment

In this case, all equipment, including spotlights and searchlights, must perform the appropriate functions:

  • create high-quality and powerful light flux,
  • to create the necessary atmosphere in order to achieve the right mood among the public,

Note! Light lighting on the stage and in the hall should be able to shift light accents as the action unfolds.

  • emphasize all the actions taking place on the stage so that they are visible from all angles and angles,
  • clearly highlight various elements: sets, performers, orchestra, etc. At the same time, the equipment itself (spotlights and spotlights) can highlight various stage elements, depending on the need. For example, the light operator during the performance can change the direction of the light flux that the projectors emit.

As you can see, equipment and everything related to its placement and use play a large role in the organization of lighting on the stage.

Lighting options

Today, depending on various factors, lighting design can be implemented in the following ways:

  • using a single light source. It can be one powerful spotlight,
  • with the help of several, if not a whole group, light sources. Typically, a variety of equipment is used in this situation (for example, spotlights and spotlights).

The use of a particular lighting method is determined by several parameters:

  • dimensions of the room (assembly or concert hall),

Assembly Hall Lighting

  • mission: for concerts, children's parties, theatrical performances, etc.,
  • illumination levels prescribed in the regulatory documentation for this type of room (assembly or concert hall, etc.),
  • technical characteristics of the equipment used (spotlights, floodlights, etc.),
  • power of the used light sources. Here you can use a variety of light sources: LED, fluorescent, halogen and other types of bulbs.

Consider each option backlight in more detail.

Single light source

Single light source

This option has a rather complicated implementation, as it requires a scrupulous selection of equipment for power.

In order to fully illuminate the area of ​​any hall, lighting equipment in the form of a single lamp (for example, a searchlight) should be placed at a considerable distance from it. In this case, the luminous flux emitted by such a lamp will be uncontrollable. Therefore, there is no need to talk about any light accents in this case.

Note! The most effective reception using one light source will look when there is one performer on the site. In such a situation, it will be possible to accentuate the whole world on it, realizing all the tasks.

But a more relevant and common option for organizing the illumination of a concert or assembly hall is the use of several light sources.

Lighting with multiple light sources

The main principle of stage lighting is the correct ratio of the size of the lighting fixture to the shadow that results from it. This, to the fullest extent possible, can be achieved only in a situation where several types of lighting equipment are used in the lighting system (for example, spotlights and spotlights).

Note! The smaller the light source, the sharper the shadow will turn out and vice versa. The sharpness of the shadow will increase with increasing distance from the light source.

Lighting with multiple light sources

Full coverage of scenes has several plans:

  • front and rear
  • upper and lower
  • side,
  • combining.

Each lighting system plan can be implemented by the following types of lighting equipment:

  • Spotlights. It can be spotlights, scanners, searchlights, devices of full rotation and others,
  • light panels where several light sources are mounted, which also have the ability to give light flux in the desired direction.

The work of the artist in the world

The use of several types of fixtures enables the lighting designer to create a specific suspension scheme for each particular case. Thanks to the mobility of lighting devices, it can quickly change accents, create shadows or vice versa, illuminate the entire space, etc. Such opportunities are indispensable in almost all scenic activities.

Lighting Approaches

In order to create high-grade lighting on the stage, there are several approaches to using several types of lighting devices at once:

  • the use of a certain group of fixtures for each individual scene,
  • application of one lighting design for all scenes,
  • the use of additional groups of lamps along with the main backlight.

Stage Lighting Option

The use of different options of fixtures will allow the artist to choose the best lighting option for the light.

Who and what needs to be covered

On the stages, depending on the type of premises in which they are installed (cultural center, concert or assembly hall), various actions can take place. But, despite this, it is necessary to cover:

  • main characters. If there are several performers, they should be evenly lit, regardless of their movement,
  • solo performers. They are illuminated by an additional group of lighting fixtures and are also “led” when the placement is changed.

Note! Lighting schemes for soloists and performers for concerts, assembly halls and theaters will be different, as they are intended for different purposes.

Backlighting a soloist on stage

Along with this, it is necessary to create separate lighting for the scene. It includes the front of the site, as well as its middle and rear. Very often they are further divided into separate sections.

Note! It is desirable that the number of these sites be odd.

As a result of this division, a matrix structure is obtained, which can consist of 9 or more sections. It all depends on the area of ​​space - the number of plots can reach several hundred. Such a division is necessary so that each light fixture can illuminate its specific area.

Stage Lighting Options

As noted earlier, the scene lighting scheme may be different. It all depends on the size of the room where it is located, as well as on the number of installed fixtures. As an example of the main type of lighting, the following scheme can be used.

The scheme of organization of the main lighting of the scene

As you can see, in this situation, the following lighting options were used:

  • backlight for highlighting the performer,
  • ramp - to highlight the artist’s face,
  • spotlights - they are placed above the site, providing shadowless lighting,
  • backdrops - create a backdrop.

A side lighting can be organized according to this scheme:

This scheme is implemented by the following equipment:

  • box - illuminates the foreground of the scene,
  • portal - illuminate the depth of the stage,
  • side lights - complement the portals, providing surround lighting.

These are basic, basic options, but along with them there are other schemes that are also successfully used.

Conclusion

In order to qualitatively and, most importantly, correctly organize lighting on the stage, it is necessary to adhere to certain principles and also recommendations. It is also worth choosing the right lighting equipment and arranging it according to a certain pattern. Only in this way can you achieve high-quality illumination of the scene in any situation.

How to choose the angle of incidence of light

There are five main options for the location and angle of the lamps in relation to the illuminated area:

Horizontal - goes straight ahead and matches the way the viewer looks.

Rear - highlights the object behind, can be hidden behind it.

Side - comes from the side, possibly from behind the curtains.

Upper - located on the ceiling or beam.

Ramp - comes from below, sometimes literally from under the feet of an object or in front of it.

Upper Front - Combined

Diagonal - goes to the side and above or below.


Now we will analyze each corner and try to understand what mood can be conveyed to them.

Flat light is the base, such a picture is usually of little interest and serves rather as a service one.

The back light complements the picture, in its pure form can produce an unnecessarily frightening or dramatic impression, clearly highlighting the silhouette.

The light from the side looks interesting and unusual, practically never occurs in ordinary life.

The upper flare seems to press, it looks monumental.

Rampovy considers it a more concert option and looks quite artificially on stage.

The upper front creates natural lighting, helps the viewer plunge and believe in what is happening.

The diagonal forms interesting shadows, expresses the sacredness or unusualness of what is happening.


Studio Features

If you have already begun to master the art of photo and video shooting, you should perfectly understand that working in natural light conditions, especially when it comes to indoor sessions, is an extremely difficult task and only real professionals can do.

Interesting to know! Let’s cite the movie “Survivor” with Leonardo DiCaprio, for which he finally won an Oscar. The production of the picture is noteworthy in that the entire film was shot in natural light. Director Alejandro González Iñárritu and cameraman Emmanuel Lübecki did a really great job.

  • In order to make a beautiful photo in the room, you will need several light sources, several devices for its reflection and scattering, as well as knowledge of how to position this light.
  • Taking into account all the nuances, the novice photographer will receive very high-quality images, unlike what he does on the street, or without using additional equipment.
  • Another feature of studio shooting is the fact that with the right skill, the artist can not only create the desired level of lighting, but also recreate certain conditions, simulating, for example, an evening or, say, a darkened room, while maintaining the volume in the photos received.

At the same time, you can organize a photo studio in absolutely any room, without restrictions.

Studio Lighting Types

In order for any photograph of a person, animal or objects to turn out beautiful, for shooting, several light sources will be required, which will make the picture voluminous, emphasize the right places and create the necessary transitions of shadows. Using only one source, even of scattered light, the picture will be quite tough due to a sharp transition from light to shadow, which is applicable only in certain styles of photography.

In confirmation of his words, we bring here this photo with a girl. Look, on the right, it looks much more attractive simply because the photographer softened especially dark areas on the face: the shadow under the lips, nose and eyes, from the chin.

The transition from light to shadow has become softer, while maintaining volume. In this case, a single light source and a diffuser or photo umbrella are enough, but the photo can be even more beautiful. How to do this we will describe further.

Lighting schemes in photo studios may differ, depending on the tasks that the photographer has set for himself, but there is a basis, so to speak, of a classic that is unchanged, and is used in photography from the dawn of this art. Let's list the main sources of light that are used in the construction of circuits.

  • The main light on the site is called paint. Its task is to give the main illumination of the subject and create the main shadows on it. They usually place it at a certain angle, slightly above the head of the model so that the shadow from the nose is directed to the corner of the mouth.

Advice! As a budget source of paint, you can use sunlight from a window, if any, in your studio.

  • The painting light usually needs to be very intense in order to sufficiently illuminate the model, however, high brightness is the main reason for the hard shadows on the face, which we already demonstrated in one of the photos. To avoid such an effect, it must be dispersed to the desired degree.
  • This can be done with the help of various diffusers (photo-umbrella for clearance) and softboxes, and if we are talking about shooting under natural light, then clouds can play their role in cloudy weather.

  • You can also soften the light and direct it to the subject at a certain angle using reflectors, as shown in the diagram with the girl above. In general, reflectors are very effective and inexpensive devices with which you can realize the backlight of the model from different sides, having in fact only one light source.

  • The next light source is called fill light. It is usually located on the other side of the drawer, as shown in the diagram above. Its purpose is to soften the shadows. The brightness of this source should not be large otherwise the picture will lose in volume. Also, the light should be soft, so reflectors or softboxes are used.
  • Backlight or, as they say, accent is the last of the main ones. Располагают его позади объекта съемки, чтобы создать вокруг него легкий световой ареал, с целью отделить визуально модель от заднего фона.

Помимо основы применяются еще два источника света:

  1. Фоновый – не сложно догадаться из названия, что направляют его на задний фон, чтобы его подсветить, сделать красочнее и ярче и еще сильнее отделить объект съемки от него.
  2. Modeling - his task is to create certain accents in the composition, emphasize spectacular highlights or soften pointwise shadows. The light itself is narrowly focused and not very powerful.

What you need to know about the world itself

We have already said that light can be hard and soft. In the first case, the image is characterized by the presence of sharp contrasts, which looks especially impressive when creating black and white images, as in the example above.

At the same time, the photo comes out saturated and bright, without an abundance of halftones. Shadows turn out sharp, very deep, going black, and glare - as bright and expressive as possible.

  • Hard light is the real enemy of novice photographers who do not understand how to use it correctly. Light sources giving this effect are the sun or a flash directly directed at the model.
  • It can also be obtained with the help of certain reflector surfaces and with nozzles such as, tube, honeycomb and others.

  • Soft light is a maximum of half tones and smooth gradients from light to shadow. Such a backlight will not give bright glare, therefore, in combination with it, a modeling backlight is good. He will not give deep shadows. Photos with such lighting look very nice and beautiful, therefore, in portrait shooting they are most often used precisely.

How to create such a light, we casually said. Now let's talk a little more.

  • So, the easiest way to make the light softer is to place some translucent barrier on its way, for example, through a tulle on a window. Softboxes operate on this principle, inside of which lamps or flash units are placed. The price of such equipment is low, and ordering it from China, you can give ridiculous money.

Advice! The advantage of studio shooting is that you can use constant light sources for work and not waste money on equipment that synchronizes flashes and the shutter of the camera. In other words, we put a lamp of the required power inside the softbox, turn it on and enjoy life.

  • If you want to build something like this, you can do it yourself.

  • You can soften the light with the help of reflectors. The photo above shows their set. Pay attention to different surfaces - we are interested in matte ones that will give the desired effect. Metallized, on the contrary, will make the lighting tougher.
  • The color of the reflector is also important, since the highlighted model will be painted in the same tone.
  • These devices also do not cost a lot of money and can come in handy even in the "field". If there are no funds at all, then a regular white wall, a stretched sheet or a piece of polystyrene will be suitable as a reflector.

Advice! Correct work with reflectors contains many nuances; the video in this article will tell about how this is done correctly.

  • The next studio fixture is the photo umbrella. In fact, this is still the same reflector, however, due to the dome-shaped shape, the light is directed. The reflective surface may also vary. In some embodiments, photo umbrellas are fitted with a translucent fabric and work like softboxes.

These devices and their alternatives are required when creating any studio. Add here the light sources themselves (lamps and flashes) and you can proceed to the first tests and exposure of light schemes.

Sources of light

Studio lighting, as we have already found out, is somewhat peculiar, and different types of light sources can be used to create it.

All of them are divided into two categories:

  • Pulse sources - that is, flashes that are used only in photography. A feature of this equipment is that they are capable of producing a very powerful luminous flux for a short time and brightly illuminate the subject and some surrounding space.
  • The disadvantage of such a source is that the photographer cannot see the result until he takes the picture, that is, he must first imagine how the light will reflect and fill the exposition, which is possible only with experience.
  • The advantages include independence from electrical networks (not important for studio work) and greater brightness.

Interesting to know! Photographers never direct flash light from a model. Usually it is reflected from the surrounding planes (walls, ceiling), and in studios, flashes are placed in softboxes that soften direct light, eliminating glare and too dark areas.

  • The second type is fixtures that provide constant light. Usually this is a rather bulky equipment that is equally effective for both photo and video shooting.
  • The source for this is ordinary lamps that are installed in softboxes on tripods, umbrellas, spotlights, monoblocks and more.
  • As for the lamps, the approach to their selection is very important, since each type is distinguished by the color rendering quality. Above any competitor in this parameter are incandescent and halogen lamps, since they give light due to temperature, as our sun does, however, these sources consume a lot of electricity and heat up very much, which is not suitable for any equipment.
  • As an alternative, they use high-quality fluorescent and LED lamps - the color rendition is slightly worse, but otherwise solid advantages.

How to set the light

In the second part of the article we will tell you what studio lighting schemes can be. Of course, we can’t talk about each, because there are a huge number of them, and experienced masters of photography are constantly experimenting, trying to invent something new, but we will mention a few interesting options that any serious photographer must be able to use. So, here is a short but very useful instruction.

Hollywood Scheme or Butterfly

This scheme is called Hollywood because most of the classic movie stars for posters and posters were made in this way. The portrait turns out to be expressive, despite the fact that it is very simple and quick to set up a scheme.

  • For work you will need only two light sources: painting and background. The first is installed either directly above the camera, or on the side of it at the closest possible distance, as shown in the picture.
  • A pulsed flash is usually used, which must be placed in a softbox to obtain soft shadows.
  • Background light is placed behind the model to the side, and is directed at an angle of about 45 degrees behind her back. Naturally, we look so that the device does not fall into the frame. Lighting power should be low.

Advice! It is impossible to give an exact recommendation here, so we advise you to try everything on your own experience. Believe me, you will find the optimal result for yourself very quickly.

  • The background itself is better to use a dark color, which will give the image more depth and mystery.
  • Alternatively, you can complicate the scheme a bit and add a third modeling light source, placing it slightly below the camera, and directing it from below to the model’s face. The main thing here is not to overdo it, since you can "kill" all the shadows on your face, which will make the picture flat.

Option with one and two light sources

If you have a window in the studio through which enough natural light enters the room, then using a light background, you can make a beautiful portrait with just one light fixture.

As can be seen from the photo presented, the photographer used a flash on a stand, on top of which he installed a softbox. The artificial light source is located slightly to the side, slightly below the head of the subject, and the stream from it will be directed to the nearest shoulder of the model (slightly below the face).

At the same time, the model itself turns to face the light, which allows you to gently illuminate it, getting soft shadows on the back side.

Here is the result.

Without going far from the scheme just described, let's complicate it a bit by adding another spotlight in the softbox, which must be placed exactly opposite the first. He rises above his head and also heads towards the model.

As you understand, we added backlight, but due to the fact that it is located not lower but higher than the object, a halo will not be created around it, but interesting highlights will appear on the face, arm and shoulder, which will significantly add photos of the volume.

Advice! When installing backlight, do not forget that its power should always be weaker than that of the painter.

If you have only a dark background at your disposal, then shooting with only one light source, you should understand that the model will merge with it, especially if the clothes on it are also dark. Such pictures are also beautiful in their own way, but the volume in them will not be enough. Here, look at the following photo to see this.

To separate an object from the background, what do we need to do? Correctly, either put backlight, or background, or both! And if you put and fill, you get a classic three-point scheme.

High Key and Low Key Schemes

Two more options for creating unusual, beautiful and memorable shots. In fact, these are two opposites. In the first case, you can create something similar to beautiful angels or majestic elves in the style of the movie “Lord of the Rings”.

  • The setting of light in a "high key" is not much different from Hollywood. The model’s face also illuminates a single light source located above or at the side of the camera at close range.

  • The difference lies in the background lighting - a second source is added, which is also set at an angle of 45 degrees to the background, but on the other hand. At the same time, the intensity of background lighting should be 1-2 steps higher in exposure than that of the painting light.
  • The background itself should be light in order to enhance the glow effect.

As a result, we get a powerful and bright halo of translucent hair and giving beautiful highlights on the sides of the subject. The volume in the image is saved due to the darker face of the model.

“Low Key” is, on the contrary, a realm of contrast with a minimum of light. We already saw something similar when shooting with a single light source on a dark background, but there was a lot of light there, which made it possible to illuminate in detail the face of the model.

But we need a dim image with clearly expressed basic details, that is, a minimum amount of light, without the risk of plunging everything into complete darkness.

  • Such a photograph is characterized by the deepest black color of the background, which means that its illumination is used extremely rarely.
  • The photographed model is illuminated by a single source and is corrected by reflectors with metallized coatings that give hard light.
  • Such a shooting is more suitable for photographing men, as it adorns their faces. At the same time, women's looks become rougher, which is realized by artists only in certain cases.

The light scheme is extremely simple.

The main job of the photographer is to choose the intensity of the light flux and adjust the exposure in the camera. By the way, it’s worth talking about the second separately, devoting a separate article to this.

Rembrandt Scheme

If you or your client wants to create a light portrait with a piece of drama and some epicity, then the Rembrandt scheme is what you need.

Such a scheme is set as follows:

  • The monoblock on a tripod is connected to an umbrella with a silver inner surface,
  • The light source is placed on the side of the camera and is sent to the model at an angle of 45 degrees,
  • Light on the object should fall from above, from the side, so the stand rises about a meter above her head,
  • On the other hand, a reflector is installed, the light from which is sent to the darkened part of the face of the model, in order to slightly align the shadows.

A classic Rembrandt portrait is considered correct if you get a light spot in the shape of a triangle above the darkened cheekbone. Whoever drew in this style, we think, there is no need to tell.

The scheme "Shell"

If the goal is to show every detail on the face, then this scheme is what you need, as it creates the most uniform lighting. By the way, such a setting looks very nice on wedding portraits of happy brides.

The picture is pretty flat, but for portraits in the power of "beauty" is exactly what you need.

The scheme is very simple:

  • Two monoblocks are installed in front and on the sides of the model at the level of her face,
  • Sources are placed in softboxes,
  • The angle of incidence of light is about 45 degrees,
  • It’s important that the softboxes are the same and are one distance from the subject,
  • Below, at the level of the belt, a reflector is placed, which will illuminate the lower part of the face.

Advice! By the way, the reflector can calmly hold the model itself, which allows not to use extra racks.

A similar portrait can be made somewhat differently.

  • Position the main light source just above the model and directly in front of it. It is convenient to use the crane stand so that it does not interfere with the photographer.
  • Put the source in the octobox.
  • From below, directly on the floor, put a second light in the strip box. The light from it is directed up to the face of the model, as shown in the photo above. Alternatively, you can use the reflector.

Here is the result. We think that absolutely any girl will be glad of such a picture in her collection.

This, perhaps, will end our excursion into the world of studio light. As you can see, lighting a photo studio is not so complicated, but it requires the availability of equipment and, of course, knowledge and author's vision. Study, try yourself, and you will succeed. The main thing is patience and work! Good luck!

How to combine different angles of stage lighting

Different angles of illumination reveal new facets of the object or interact with the image of the actor. You can choose dramatic and contrasting spotlights, placing them at different angles for a complete image. Also, different sides of the site will illuminate the dynamic light music.

Make one light source the main, let the rest echo it, complementing the overall light picture. It will turn out more expressively and without a mess. Do not be afraid to weaken the intensity of the auxiliary lamps. The main spotlight can imitate the moon or the sun, or simply highlight the character.

Do not overdo it with a combination of backlight angles, select 1-2 priority ones and decide on the emotional background that you are trying to create. Sometimes minimalism is more likely to play into the hands, and excess will only blur the general impression of observers.

If you make objects in contrast, brightly highlighting them from behind, this will change the way viewers perceive them. Even a distant figure will seem closer, which must also be taken into account. Try to deliberately use this effect for greater expressiveness.

Realistic stage light - This is what imitates street lamps, sunbeams or table lamps. This is very important to observe in most productions in which the action takes place in the real, not the fantasy world. Carefully select not only the tilt angles, but also the color temperature of the sources so that they seem warm enough and convey natural tones.

In this section, you can derive several basic rules of work:

Make the picture dynamic, otherwise the viewer will get tired, he will begin to get tired, observing the same mood from the stage. The action must be conveyed and emphasized in detail.

There is nothing better than light to emphasize form or line.

Do not overdo it with dramatic twilight, otherwise the viewer will not see the nuances.

Deep shadows give contrast and make the scene more complete, memorable.


We recommend training in creating a different mood with the help of light and do it constantly, and not just at real performances and shows. You can hone your skills in a couple of years or earlier, but it requires a lot of practical experience.

Inspire other people's works, photographs, clips and films, always pay attention to how the light in the frame is connected and the mood that is transmitted when viewing. Try to do it yourself. It is advisable to record and save their achievements, show them to more experienced colleagues.

We practice in building lighting

The simplest exercises can be repeated even at home, using your favorite lamps, floor lamps, flashlights and decorative candles. Start experimenting, and immediately see that mastery is the ability to do little, and not just experience working with expensive sets of lighting equipment and pairs of spotlights.

First exercise. Find the angle

Find or build yourself a static object that can be highlighted from various positions. Ideally, if it is a chair or a statue, something quite ambitious and interesting.

Decide on the point where the viewer will look from (in this case, yourself).

Arrange the three lamps and play with their positions.

Think about which sides of the illuminated object and what qualities each source highlights. Try changing his perception by completely rearranging them.

Also change the brightness or shades of the lamps, these details will help enhance the impression.

Do not forget the main idea, one source should dominate the picture. It will be even better if you try to include in the experiment color profile projectors or other RGB stage equipment.


Second exercise. How to draw with light

Check out blogs, magazines, and shows about the show. Посмотрите, как выстроена картинка на каждой фотографии, какие светильники и как, с какой целью применил светотехник. Попытайтесь понять общий принцип, который стоял за этим.What mood was the creator trying to convey? What can be changed or improved in the existing picture? How can you recreate a similar atmosphere with the help of the technology that you have? Such questions should arise when viewing any visual materials. Based on this, select spotlights for a specific task.

Try to find the best and worst examples of all types stage lighting. Do not be afraid to mentally criticize even popular shows or venues - everyone can make mistakes in design. It will also help to think more broadly.

The third exercise. Looking for light

Pay attention to what surrounds you in everyday life. What restaurants or halls are most pleasant to be in? Where is the atmosphere friendly and where is too depressing? After all, all this is also created due to lighting. Where does the cold light of a lamp bring contrast and a more austere atmosphere? How do small bulbs win in front of one single source?

Try to remember these nuances and later transfer them to the stage action. Try to convey the atmosphere of a bedroom, a chamber study, a cheerful park, and a library. This is an effective workout that will help make the performances believable, they will be remembered by the audience. Theater spotlights help create a realistic setting by simulating light from signage or incandescent lamps.

The fourth exercise. We work with the actor

Repeat everything that we did in the first exercise, but add to this a living model that can move and also convey a certain mood, style and color. In what light will this person look most charismatic? What light will hide flaws? How to emphasize the silhouette, add drama and audacity? How to create a sad, calm and bright environment with the participation of this character?

With this practice, you will open a huge field for creativity. Each person is individual, but you will understand the general patterns of design. Adjust all parameters until the lamps perfectly convey your idea. Try to introduce restrictions, for example, on color or distance of lamps.


Fifth exercise. We increase the number of tools

Use at once five basic lighting angles from those that we mentioned at the beginning of the article. Now you will face more subtle tasks of conveying nuances and style, the nature of the situation and the character in it.

First, just turn on the sources in turn and feel the style, mood that they will help to shape.

Then combine them, including 2-3, but not simultaneously. Observe what looks most advantageous and what effects should be avoided.

Remember to choose one dominant source in the picture.

Choose the most advantageous lighting for the model.

Then abruptly change it, radically changing the perception of a person. Try to make him suspicious, angry, shy, dangerous.

Then move on to other moods. Can you use his existing light to make him or her more mysterious? Try to convey other aspects of the personality - kindness, embarrassment, nervousness, confidence, arousal, fear, interest.

Take a picture of the most interesting results and compare them with each other. At the same time, one does not need to severely criticize or evaluate them, since this is more of a creative improvisation.

Sixth exercise. Credible, natural light on stage

Use bright sources and place them around the model so that a minimum of shadows is formed and the picture resembles midday. Then experiment and turn it into a moonlit night. The result should be as natural as possible. Here, everything is decided by one main emitter of light, the rest will only support the resulting effect.


Seventh exercise. Color light experiments

Try to simulate the following situations stage lightUsing the model, color filters and RGB floodlights:

frosty day in the forest

tropical hot midday

strict office furnishings,

neon night lights

You can come up with your own locations and set yourself more and more unusual tasks. Your main goal is to convey emotions, moods, everything that happens, that there are scenarios.

The eighth exercise. Drama

Try to illuminate the person in the center of the room so that it expresses a deep emotional state - rage, hatred, lust, fear, tenderness, envy. You can embody and revive all mortal sins or recreate images of mythological heroes and biblical stories. Try this exercise with like-minded people.

The ninth exercise. Scale up

Transfer the results of previous exercises to a large area - to several people or a section of the scene as a whole. Expand the lighted place, trying to maintain the authentic atmosphere that you created by playing with colors and the number of sources. So you get as close as possible to the goal - to create not a point light, but to design the whole scene, repeating the director’s idea or plan. Use color music for a three-dimensional effect.

At the same time, get rid of stray light or excessively dark areas, do not forget about the dynamic range of the picture. You must use not only stage lightbut also the shadows to their advantage. Also, the scene should be lively or ready to come to life, the picture should not remain static.

Get advice on stage lighting from a specialist:


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