Singapore 27th May 2013
In my view there are two different breeds of lighting designers, the creative designers and the technical designers. The first breed (to which I count myself) thrives on vivid imagination; the second breed builds on technical and engineered knowledge. This last group of people are more numbers people; they derive their design concepts from a more engineered approach. I don’t want to say they are not creative, but they generally have a far less vivid imagination. It is much more difficult for these type of designers to think out of the box. They work on proven concepts, things they know work can be checked by calculations and technical assessment. The thing is that this can be limited…knowing how to do something is not necessarily a recipe for originality, on the contrary.
That is where imagination comes in. Sometimes I dream and I wonder how the hell I could dream something that in my (woken up) mind says it is not possible. But that’s the thing, in dreams everything is possible, you can fly in your dreams! Letting go of your conscious thinking, the one that limits your creativity because a little voice says that it is not possible, so forget it. I am a very visual designer, I can imagine things visually in my head, which helps enormously when you are developing lighting concepts. But while rank myself as a creative designer with lots of ideas and imagination in my field of work, I work within the realm of realism. But there are incredibly imaginative people like architects Gaudi and Utzon who designed impossible shapes like La Sagrada Familia in Barcelona the Opera House in Sydney…still today people trying to grasp how it is possible!
Light Watch 4-92: Speaking of that, Vivid Sydney is one of those leading lighting festivals in the world that is always a head turner, not in the least because of the iconic buildings such as the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, etc, that serve as the background and canvas for lighting creativity and imagination. The festival combines light, art and music and runs till the 23rd June. While light is magic and some of the images and compositions that the artists come up with are amazing somehow after a while I think it gets boring… you can endlessly change the theme and images you project, but it really a variation on the same theme…Have a look.