Thursday, October 14, 2010


as it happens, i am no lighting expert. however, i understand and love the effect lighting does have.

Our auditorium has, for as long as I can remember, and probably since adam met eve, been lit by 6x metal halide lights. These things are painfully bright, and have the snazzy effect of making our church look exactly like a supermarket. When I walk in, usually my first thought is something to do with the price of meat and GST rises attempting to bankrupt me at every turn.

Our foyer looks great with halogen downlights, our stage looks great with a full wall RGB cyc and a bunch of pars and fresnels, and our auditorium has supermarket lights.

Well, it does have dimmable halogen downlights around the edges. But as they don't throw far, they have never been used very well.

Well, after seeing Elim Howick's lighting rig, and their clever use of halogen worklights as house lighting, I thought I'd have a wee hunt through the church under stages and in cupboards ect to see what I could see.

I found an amazing array of stuff, including a spare 5-channel dimmer pack and controller, and hit the jackpot - 7 matching halogen worklights, in a range of conditions.

First I tried mounting a working one on the lighting truss and bouncing the light off the roof. I learned two things.
a) our church does not have a pretty roof b) acoustic tile doesn't reflect light very well.

However, pointing the light directly down caused a pretty nice spread without too many shadows, and not too bright either. So most of the rest of my day was spent fixing halogens and mounting them on either our front or back truss. After a few calculations to make sure I wouldn't blow fuses constantly, I got them all hooked up to a dimmer channel, and DMX'ed to the lighting desk.
I ended up with 6 covering the centre of the room. They meet up nicely with the side downlights, and the room is pretty evenly covered in a nice warm glow.
It can be faded as one pleases, and it creates a much nicer atmosphere for the room.

Not bad for half a days work and a pile of dusty broken equipment.


(sadly, my work was noticed by josh, our kids church leader. my next project will be the kid's auditorium. stupid infernal lighting.)


  1. Hahahaha you don't have to do it, though I guess it should be done be someone who knows what they're doing. As long as it does get done though, cause it would be mint I reckon, add a whole new dynamic to that room. Good stuff on the Auditorium, it's gonna be mean as from now on!

  2. yay! my first comment! it would be a pleasure to have a crack at the powerzone room, I'll have a think about what we can do in there and what it will cost. . . .

  3. Since you mention it, I really did enjoy the atmosphere in church on the weekend and I know it wasn't just cause Sergio was there. Those blinders-as-house-lights worked a treat, and it felt more like a lounge where God just so happened to be chilling out and less like a lecture theatre (slash supermarket...) Well done!