Ask lighting designers what gives them most pleasure, and the chances are they’ll answer “the opportunity to be creative”. But: a stunning design eventually needs to be translated into a working reality. Waiting until the show itself to see if the design can actually be implemented isn’t an option – but neither, in the majority of cases, is it feasible to put together a ‘live’ trial. That was the challenge facing Raphaël Ganhy, lighting designer for Gedinne Plein Air Festival 2017.
It features an eclectic mix of techno and trance, with lighting and video playing a key part in the atmosphere and experience. Raphaël turned to CAST Software wysiwyg, a comprehensive software design suite that incorporates virtual real-time pre-visualization of lighting, motion, and media content.
“I used wysiwyg from the beginning to the end of the project,” he explains. “That meant spending around 200 hours using wysiwyg and all of its many functions – CAD, Design, CAD Plan, Report and so on. In total, I used around 133 DMX universes. It was a challenging, but very enjoyable, project, and wysiwyg enabled me to determine whether my ideas would work – and to find alternatives if necessary.”
What Raphaël was looking to achieve was something that can only be described as innovative and ground-breaking. Where, traditionally, a lighting designer might have looked to video, they wanted to use LED pixel mapping instead.
They designed a unique solution using 300 SGM LT-200 2-metre graphics tubes loaded with RGB LEDs to create a concept they called ØKUBE in which each pixel is individually controllable.
“Without wysiwyg and the support of Dino Mazza, wysiwyg’s product manager, I would never have been able to test and see if my idea was feasible,” Raphaël said. “Most importantly: wysiwyg was vital in helping us to not only meet the client’s expectations, but to exceed them.”