New to the booth!

Hello everyone Jim here, an actor, director, designer and techie 30 years into my love affair with this thing called theater! Technical areas of focus are sound design and props, with a love for set decorating and special effects. I am also an experienced SM.

I get paid to do what I do when I do it, but I also hold down a day job to keep the bills paid and I have an online store featuring hundreds of really great theater gifts for theater lovers from all sides of the curtain. I will post the link just this once, and I hope you'll check it out. Then I will be a good non-spammy booth member! Please give the store a visit. It keeps food on the table in between gigs. THEATREPALOOZA, GIFTS FOR THEATER LOVERS!

I'll finish my introduction of myself with a really great special effect I designed for a production of A Christmas Carol. I wanted Scrooge to open up a book and for there to be an eerie green light emanating from it. This was the Ghost of Jacob Marley coming out of the book. But I also had to have the Narrator pick up the book a moment later and open it withOUT the light. With a small stage very close to the audience, there could be NO having the actors flip a switch on the book. So I found an old big thick book and cut out a compartment in the center, but only halfway through the pages. I hot glued a small but very bright mini-LED battery operated worklight into the hidden compartment and glued a piece of green gel over it making sure to allow access from one corner to the battery compartment and the switch.

When the scene change came, I had the crew switch ON the light before the book was brought on stage. With the book closed, it couldn't be seen. Then, at the right moment, Scrooge opens the appropriate side of the book in very dark lighting and the wonderful eerie green light washes beautifully across his face. He throws the book down on the floor after screaming, rehearsing the throw so the book lands flat and closed. Marley appears and the Marley Scrooge scene takes place. Next, the Narrator walks through Scrooge's bedroom, picks up the book, and the audience simply doesn't notice that he casually flips it over before opening it to reveal...that's eerie green light! We fixed both sides of the book to look like the identical front cover.

The audience was amazed. It sounds simple, but close up to the audience, with no flipping of switches and no wires attached, it was very spooky.

I love creating special props and effects like this!

Thanks for having me... looking forward to exploring the booth!



CB Mods
Premium Member
Fight Leukemia
Welcome to the booth! It's nice to have those experienced on both sides of the curtain.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful resource to the community and help when you can. See you in the forums.
Welcome to CB!!!

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