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Glowing Costumes?

Discussion in 'Costumes and Makeup' started by tbhatt, Feb 19, 2009.

  1. tbhatt

    tbhatt Member

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    A friend of mine is designing the costumes for Sweeney Todd, and she needs some of the costumes to shine at one point to make the characters look like memories or ghosts. She's read about the scotchlite beads that 3M makes and is wondering if they can be mixed with paint to paint the costumes so that they look normal under some light but gleam and glow under different light. Please let me know if you have used anything like this before. ps. I'm the lighting designer for the same production so if it requires some specific lighting effect that's fine, I can hook her up...
     
  2. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    I've never heard of / used the Scotchlite beads, but it sounds like I need to check them out. My first thoughts on this run to something along the lines of Roscos "invisible" fluorescent paints. They come in a variety of colors and are literally invisible until you hit them with a UV source. There are several "glow in the dark" paints, which a available at Craft and Hobby stores. One of the advantages of the glow in the dark paints is that many of them are intended for use on clothing, are Acrylic based and therefore hold up to the rigors of cleaning and washings better than, I believe, the Rosco Products.
    The Glow in the dark paints can also be activated by a UV source, and for that subject you should use the search function there have been numerous threads on the use of and recommendations for UV light sources.
     
  3. lieperjp

    lieperjp Well-Known Member

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    My physics professor was telling us today about how his colleagues from his research scientist days would purposefully irradiate items (pens, shirts) to make them glow in the dark...

    Too bad you couldn't just do that :p
     
  4. themuzicman

    themuzicman Well-Known Member

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    UV Paints!
    ---
    and my physics teacher last year irradiated some of his stuff, and would show us! The coolest was when he irradiated sand, and threw it on a hot plate, and it would catch fire, but look really cool due to the radiation!
     
  5. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Oh Great !
    I can see it now. Dateline Sudbury Ontario:

    Mystery continues around Actors Hair and tooth loss,
    Meanwhile Sweeny Todd continues sold out run....
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2009
  6. tbhatt

    tbhatt Member

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    We've looked into the glow in the dark paints and thats not the look she's going for. She read about the use of these scotchlite beads in a book about film costumes. It is what they used to make the ghosts in Disney's Haunted Mansion and for the Kryptonite costumes in the Richard Donner Superman film. The look she's going for is more other-worldly, glow-in-the-dark paint just looks like glow-in-the-dark paint. We continue looking and happily seek guidence further. I will also post our solution if we come up with one. thanks.
     
  7. joeboo46

    joeboo46 Member

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    I may be suggesting something you had already said is not what you are looking for but. . . have you looked into the Wildfire Line of Clear Luminescent Paint??

    Wildfire, Inc. - Wildfire Clear Luminescent Paints

    They react really well. And are virtually invisible under normal light. I've used it in a few haunted attraction applications where we wanted to transform the room quickly and they don't like like your typical Acrylic Flourescent colors under UV light plus you can mix almost any color.
     
  8. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Several years ago, during the minute he was famous, Aaron Carter wore a suit made entirely of something like this: Reflective ribbon for one number on his tour. The ten followspot operators were not happy.:cool:

    I would think that paint would cover the glass beads, making them ineffectual, but a clear binder with no pigment might work.

    Here's another thought: http://www.rosebrand.com/subcategory221/projection-screens-screen-goo-paint.aspx; not sure if it could be tinted or not though.

    With any reflective surface as a costume, I suspect the LD will want to choose angles carefully to achieve the desired effects--almost the reverse of what one would think: sidelight for "normal" and direct frontlight for maximum reflectivity/ghostly effect.

    Let us know how it turns out, preferably with pictures.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2009
  9. theatretechguy

    theatretechguy Member

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    While that kind of effect works on film (where the angle, "sweet spot" can be controlled), achieving that same look with glass beads onstage would be quite difficult. As other have suggested, I think black lights and blacklight activated paints will probably be better at achieving what you're after.

    This may or may not jive with the intended look of the production, as blacklight effects work better when you're dealing with psychadelic material (sequences from the musical "Seusical" and "Alice in Wonderland" come to mind). This really is going to fall under the jurisdiction of the costumer and makeup artists to really pull this off.
     
  10. ruinexplorer

    ruinexplorer Minion CB Mods Premium Member Fight Leukemia

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    What about doing a "Tron" type effect with LiveWire? Or you might also use this with a little less flexibility. Either one would also add nice highlights to the UV effects that others are mentioning.

    One thing about UV paint, be careful in how you wash the rest of your costumes (as you probably already know) since many detergents add flourescents to help the colors "pop" in sunlight and will glow right along with your UV paints.
     
  11. renegadeblack

    renegadeblack Active Member

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    I remember seeing cats and the cats had lights in the eyes on their costumes and they all would turn on at the same time when they were in the audience. I'm assuming some sort of portable dmx solution. I don't know if that's something that you want to do, but I thought that it would be interesting.
     
  12. jessamarie6

    jessamarie6 Member

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    these are easier to find at christmas, but I had costumers use a string of LEDs on a battery pack before on a show I was working on. The string was sewn with the switch run right to the actor's pocket. Bury some LEDs behind a couple of layers of sheer fabric and you might get the look you're wanting.
     
  13. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Only one other Caveat I can think of with the ScotchLite Beads.
    You say the Costumer did research and found out this was what they used for an effect in a film? Assuming they did not use any Effect processing in Post and that this was a pure "live" effect, you still have to remember that the Camera and film is not the human Eye. What can be accomplished with a haze filter, some very low angle lighting, and nifty reflective technology on film, simply cannot be recreated on stage.

    I still like the Irradiation Idea.

    Nuke 'em, Nuke em till they glow.
    :twisted:
     
  14. ruinexplorer

    ruinexplorer Minion CB Mods Premium Member Fight Leukemia

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    Along the same lines as the Califoneon but without the need of electricity: ADDLIGHT Photoluminescent Safety Sign Systems

    Skip the actors all together and go with holographic projection. Well, that might be out of your price range, but it'd definitely require your lighting skills!
     

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