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Humanities LibreTexts

4.4: Lighting Design

  • Page ID
    74073
  • Your lighting designer is a very special collaborator and what makes them unique is that like a great improvisational actor their artistry responds to the choices you and the production team makes. You will typically meet your designer in the beginning of the process to describe your ideas, and then later in the rehearsal process your lighting designer will sit in on run throughs to see how the production has been staged, understand the space, and create a plan to highlight the production. In the preparation of your meeting, make sure to give your lighting designer the information you gave your costume and set designer, in addition to pictures of specific lighting images you find inspirational. Your lighting designer will need to pick gels that compliment and do not work against the color palette of the production so it is imperative that you keep them informed.

    Lighting enhances the set, can hide errors, or you can transport audiences to completely new locations just with lighting. A Lighting Designer will understand color, angle, shadow, and color mixing on a very deep level and it is important to give them as much information as you can about the stylistic choices your creative team will be making.

    How to prepare for your meeting

    • Read the play and write down the list of specific moments you want dramatic lighting to be featured.
    • Look at the styles and inspiration choices you have collected for your other meetings. What is the overall feel and look you would like for your production? Think of the lighting in a similar way that colorists use filters in film editing. The lighting will provide depth, texture, and the gels will create an overall aesthetic to the piece. Comedies are usually more colorful and have brighter lights, while dramas tend to be darker and rely on lights to create mood.
    • Find examples of pictures or images you really like and make sure to bring it to the meeting. Explain where you want the image of the picture to be reflected in the play.
    • Let them know their budget
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