Lighting Theater Productions is Ideal Training for Designers

Some of my students often ask what the best training is for a lighting professional. I believe working in the theater gives you incredible opportunities to learn and grow. The theatre is also where I learned my mock up techniques.
A mock up is when you place lights in the space you are designing to see actual effects. This trumps any intellectual or theoretical debate about what is appropriate. A mock up lets you see exactly what the impact of your design will be.
I learned this while working in the theater. While the actors are still in the rehearsal process, the lighting designer is able to move lights around to test the design. It’s like a painter adjusting color on the canvas. By illuminating a set in this way, you can experiment a bit before the crunch time of dress rehearsal and opening night.

Many of the top interior and exterior lighting designers are coming out of the theater, where you have the opportunity to hone your craft, make mistakes and try new things. It’s much trickier in the real world of architecture, because people don’t have the time and don’t want to make the time. Sometimes impatient business clients ask me to rush, which leads to an inferior outcome. I say, “I can do that for you, but you’re not using the service that I’m offering.”
I’m an artist. No matter who I design for, I want that dimension understood and embraced. It will make a profound difference in how others perceive your home or business.

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