Perth, 8th December 2014
Yes I missed my blog on Friday, I know, came back late, had friends over during the weekend, just did not get to it. This week I am back in Perth and this will be my last week of blogging for the year.
Tonight I went out for a final round of testing for the lighting of His Majesty’s Theatre as we need to log in all light fixtures before Xmas to keep to the time schedule. From my files I had seen that the last time we visually tested the lights was more than 2 years ago, so a visual retest was necessary as the light fittings we had previously specified had been superseded by the latest generation LED upgrades. Not surprisingly wattage and light output were improved! On top of that the light fittings have now additional lens options and beam configurations, so todays re-test was timely and very much needed. I am glad I did as I regained a lot of confidence that the project will turn out magical!
Doing a visual test like we did tonight requires quite a lot off experience and understanding as well as the ability to visualise the whole picture of all lights combined. Of course we cannot test the final and complete lighting installation so we test the lights individually in key representative areas of building architecture. Understanding the light and shadow balance, how lights from different locations and positions will interact and combine together is crucial in this visual assessment. I found that moving the lights slightly forward or backwards could make the difference of seeing an architrave outlined or covered in a shadow and that leaving some parts of the façade in the dark would reinforce the building structure much stronger.
Most of all the brightness was the key issue to address. While the lighting effect may look nice individually, one needs to “feel” the full effect through mentally visually the effect repeated over the whole of the façade. I did like the individual brightness, I thought that was spot on, but I feel that the repeated effect may become overpowering. The light fittings that we have chosen however have an “on board” output regulator, so we can adjust the driver to provide different outputs. With that knowledge I have the peace of mind that we will have the ability to balance the brightness once we get to the final programming, testing and commissioning. In needed tonight’s visual confirmation to move forward in ordering the lights confidently…
Light Watch 5-208: Here are some mobile phone snapshots of tonight’s testing: