Perth, 23nd August 2012
What is design style, what is the right lighting design style if there is such thing? I had an interesting meeting today as we are in the process of developing a lighting concept for a theatre building. Only it is not a new building but a century old heritage building. The temptation to use LED and possibly colour is one thing, but my dialogue was mostly about integrating two different styles; one the traditional architectural lighting approach of high-lighting the building façade features (the building has many ornamental features and decorations), the other being the introduction of theatrical lighting effects like projection, silhouetting, etc. After all it is a theatre so rather than messing with the architecture by using color changing LED effects (boring, lack of imagination!!) I decided to introduce the concept of marrying the two styles.
Lighting for architecture is quite different from the theatre lighting approach. Several years back I helped out with community theatre by taking care of the play’s stage lighting and not surprisingly the lighting was kind of a disaster. While I had done a fantastic job in lighting the set (trust the architectural lighting designer) the lighting of the actors was crap if I may say. I had created the “drama” in the set rather than on the stage with the actors. Lesson learned! In theatrical stage lighting the focus and effects are quite different from architectural lighting and introducing some of this in the overall façade lighting concept has got us all very excited…unfortunately I can’t say too much at this stage.
The final challenge will be to work it out within the heritage preservation guidelines and make sure we comply with the latest city energy conservation directives and above all within budget. Quite a task ahead but after today’s design meeting we are all excited about the possibilities melting the two different lighting design styles together!
Light Watch 3-127: Here is a collection of different styles of façade lighting…Multi color LED lighting, Perth council House; Traditional lighting Old Royal Naval College London, Vershina Building Surgut Russia and building projection in Beirut, Libanon