Color in 3/4 Round

deadlygopher

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Jan 26, 2008
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San Francisco, CA
I'm working on my plot for a show in our blackbox, a 3/4 roundish space. This is the first show I've designed in this space. Does anyone have any suggestions for color to use in this configuration? I'm concerned that doing warm on one opposite pair of lights and cool on the other will make things look really awkward for some members of the audience.
 

Footer

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My advice...

Have two 45 front systems of similar color, followed by a high cross system of close to mirrored colors followed by and extremely strong backlight system. Remember, one persons front light is another's backlight etc... Lighting in the round is less about color and more about distribution, keep that in mind. As far as specific colors, thats dependant on the show...
 

Grog12

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Generally theres two methods to lighting a thrust/ 3/4 round space as you call it. Three point and 4 point. Using 3 point you have 1 straight on front light from 3 o'clock, 6 o'clock, and 9 o'clock per area (assuming the upstage side without audience is 12). Usually the 6 will be a warm while the 3 and 9 are cools or visa versa.

In 4 point you have 4 diagonal lights per area at 45's. Typically you will want 2 of these to be warm and two of these to be cool. So if your USL area light is a cool then you mirror it with your DSR front light.

Heed Footers words One person's front light is another's backlight! And always always have a few systems of downlight. Its the only angle that looks the same no matter where you're sitting at in the audience.
 

Sean

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Jun 9, 2007
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Alexandria, VA
Generally theres two methods to lighting a thrust/ 3/4 round space as you call it. Three point and 4 point. Using 3 point you have 1 straight on front light from 3 o'clock, 6 o'clock, and 9 o'clock per area (assuming the upstage side without audience is 12). Usually the 6 will be a warm while the 3 and 9 are cools or visa versa.
In 4 point you have 4 diagonal lights per area at 45's. Typically you will want 2 of these to be warm and two of these to be cool. So if your USL area light is a cool then you mirror it with your DSR front light.
Or, using the above plans, double hang it. So, you'd have a warm and a cool from each point. It will either eat dimmers or twofers, but it will give you a LOT of flexibility.

Also, if you can, hang a two+ color downlight system. This will also help you shift from look to look.

My $.02. I don't make my living as an LD.

--Sean
 

derekleffew

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Using Grog12's clock analogy, and presuming 12 to be upstage, I'd use 3-point from 12, 4, and 8; or better, 4-point from 1.5, 4.5, 7.5, and 10.5. Generally paler tints for frontlights: R05, 60, 03, and 53, (LtPnk, NcBlu, LtAmb, and PaleLav); are a good combination so no one side of the audience gets "cheated." DNLT is your friend to add deeper colors and interest. Depending on the size of the stage, the FRLT alone can consume 24, 36, or 60 fixtures/channels.

Another analogy: when doing rock shows in the round, one method is to L,R,L,R,L,R,L,R the PA 360° around the stage. Some audience sections experience the stereo image "reversed," but it doesn't matter--it's still a stereo image.

What is the show? We may be able to give more advice. If it's the C. Durang, I'd probably suggest everything No Color and let the actors and words carry the message.
 

deadlygopher

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Jan 26, 2008
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San Francisco, CA
The show is Boy Gets Girl by Rebecca Gilman. We're rather limited on dimmers, so after looking at this I'm thinking of not doing anything with color. 12 dimmers is barely enough to light the space with no color. Thanks for the feedback
 
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hans44

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Feb 28, 2005
Location
Florida
My college recently did a performance of "Top Girls" in a 48 dimmer black box. The LD (I was ALD) used 6 area fresnel washes (3-sides, 18 instruments total), and 3 different colors of backlight (S4 twofer-ed: Areas 1+4, 2+5, 3+6). Add in 4 circuits for a "Jeopardy Wall", and various specials.

As for your question, the Fresnels can be 3-fer-ed (profile channels to 80%) for 6 dimmers over 6 areas. Backlight from two sides using the S4 pairs (1/8 off US mark) for another 6 dimmers. Not sure how many total dimmers you have, or the size of the space.

Hope this helps!
 

LD4Life

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Jan 18, 2008
Location
Fort Wayne, IN
Hey, I actually light mainly in a blackbox setting, so I've had quite a bit of experience with this. Make sure that your warm and cool choices are lighter tints so as to create a more natural look from that close. I would suggest L009 (Bastard Amber) or equivolent for the warms, and a very light cool blue for your cools. Another possibility is (and I can't remember the reference number) Apollo's Rose Tint for the warm. I've worked with it some and had some great experiences with it. It gives a very good tone for anything comedic. Instrument wise, I do a fresnel for top lighting of each zone, with one warm and one cool Source 4 for face lighting. Just a few suggestions, take them or leave them.

Hope it works out for you.
 

deadlygopher

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Jan 26, 2008
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San Francisco, CA
Unfortunately it turns out that the designer for the other show has taken all my extension cables, so I won't be hanging anything until his show closes. (We're in a bit of a tech battle at the moment.)
 

LD4Life

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(We're in a bit of a tech battle at the moment.)
Ouch, never fun. I know how you feel. I work some of my shows in a house were the university also holds chapel three times a week, so I am constantly in a battle with the house TD over their use of far more of the dimmer system and inventory than they really need.
 

Murphy913

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Jan 12, 2011
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TX
The LD (I was ALD) used 6 area fresnel washes (3-sides, 18 instruments total), and 3 different colors of backlight (S4 twofer-ed: Areas 1+4, 2+5, 3+6).
If I am understanding this correctly, you divided the stage up into 6 sections and then lit those individually correct? With the 3 side fresnel washes? I tried a similar thing, 6 area washes, but cannot get rid of the shadows in between each area wash. There are spots on stage that look great and then they step left and find a terrible shadow. Perhaps I am missing something...
 

shiben

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Jun 25, 2009
Location
Chicago, IL
If I am understanding this correctly, you divided the stage up into 6 sections and then lit those individually correct? With the 3 side fresnel washes? I tried a similar thing, 6 area washes, but cannot get rid of the shadows in between each area wash. There are spots on stage that look great and then they step left and find a terrible shadow. Perhaps I am missing something...
Are you setting your focus point 5' off the deck? If not, thats probably your issue.

Not sure if the OP still needs help but:

This show was done in a 3/4 thrust space.

Zenfolio | Leighanne Evelyn Photography | Backborn

It was done rather differently than what people here are suggesting, as I cut 2/4 of the frontlights. I had 9 areas on the deck, but on each side had a fresnel wash that filled blue over the entire side. In images 69 and 71 you can see a massive difference in the tone of the image just by changing the color temperature. thats something to think about too. Also, fwiw Image 125 is lit exclusively by a single toplight.

I can give some more pictures of another show thats in production now as soon as I get photos for it, same with a past production that photos should be around soonish.