We picked up some intelligent lighting over the weekend. Well, just one. And a simple dmx controller.
For those that don't know what intelligent lighting is, it's lights that can be manipulated and controlled by a remote controller, or programmed to do specific functions. Most often used in night clubs or stage events.
We just got one, but once we work out the details like how to best use it, we might get some more. Running a dmx controller isn't an easy task, it can have a big learning curve as there's many ways to control many lights with many different controllers.
The light we got is also a Gobo. Which stands for GO Between Optics. Basically, you put a mask in front of the lens, and it will project that shape. Think of a colored spot light of a custom shape (anthropomorphic!) that's moving and dancing around a dance floor...http://www.chauvetlighting.com/qspot-160-led.html
That's the one we got. It's an intro level one. Not the brightest, but we don't really have a use to have a light 50' from where it will be hitting. Inside of a night club with 9' ceilings, it will look great.
Now, the trick is we want to use our own custom Gobos. Which means custom etched or laser cut metal (or glass) optics. Gobos arn't that common, so it's hard to find some reasonably priced. Places that specialize in them tend to use the etching process, which is more expensive. Places that don't specialize in gobos, such as metal fabricators or i dunno, are alot cheaper because they do alot of laser cutting or etching, and have standard rates they use for the process.
So, not I'm searching out places to make gobos.
But more importantly, designs. If anyone wants to throw some designs my way, I'd appreciate it! Anthropomorphic, of course. There's some tricks here, namely that these are going to be cut out of metal at about 1" width. They can have a fair amount of detail, but they are cut like a stencil, so anything that might fall out when everything around it is cut out needs to have a bridge to gap it, that's at least .25 pt stroke weight. Think of how stenciled letters are cut. And while they can be great with one side being the top, it's nice to have some that are symetrical when rotated upside down, as the light can rotate the gobos at different speeds, which can be a nice effect. One that i've already designed is a spiral of paw prints, for example.
Also, picked up a second light, this one not intelligent, more atmospheric, and not dmx controlled. It's a light that projects through colored and textured glass to give a water effect.http://www.martin.com/product/product.asp?product=maniadc1
These of course, added to the other club type lights we have like the laser field, and the digital projector. We had an awesome party of 2 (plus 2 cats, one of which kept trying to chase any light that went across the wall), in my living room on Saturday, with all the effects lights in a small space on at once.