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the role of the LIGHTING designer

If you chose to serve on the LIGHTING DESIGN TEAM for this semester's Advanced Acting show, you are responsible for participating in design team meetings as well as growing as a designer during the rehearsal and performance process.


If serving on the Lighting Design Team, you are ALSO responsible for independently learning about the role of a lighting designer as outlined below. 


Please be sure you have your Process Journal to reflect on your process/journey.




Task #1 (Reading Task): NEEDS OF THE SCRIPT  (Formative Grade): Create your own "Needs of the Script" Lighting Design spreadsheet (in Google Classroom).  Carefully (re)-READ the entire script looking for both stated and implied LIGHTING needs FROM THE SCRIPT.  Once your Lighting Needs List is complete, turn it in to KP for a grade (in Google Classroom).  Note:  This assignment requires mining for information from the script and should not include your own lighting wants - yet.  Let the SCRIPT tell you what needs there are for the story (time of day, season, practical lights needed, special effects needed, windows light, etc.).  After listing the lighting needs for the show, it's a good idea to have a conversation with the director about any of her/his lighting "wants" as well and whether there will be any blackouts/blue-outs, etc.

Task:  Discuss your Lighting Needs List with your Design team (if you have one).  As a team you will use everyone's list to compile one FINAL (Google sheets) Lighting list that you will "share" with each group member as you build and revise it.  Use KP's template in Google Classroom.

Task #2 (Research Task): RESEARCH (Formative Grade) Research information needed to make informed decisions for our show.  (Historical time period, style, lighting techniques, etc.)  Collect links (and descriptions or images of your own research, and/or images that provide inspiration for your own lighting design, in Google Classroom (Research assignment).


Task #3 (Planning Task):  DEADLINE CALENDAR (Formative Grade)  As a team, create a Deadline Calendar for your lighting design learning, needs, and goals for deliverables.  As always, be sure to utilize "backward planning" starting with the number of final dress rehearsals you'd like to have, the number run-throughs you'd like to have, and then your deadlines for hanging, focusing, programming, and testing your choices in the context of rehearsal.  (See Google Classroom for your Deadline Calendar assignment).


Task #4: (Doing Task): Schedule a time to meet with John Schmidt to learn more about lighting, fixtures, how to program/use the board, and how to use your design ideas to light the black box space for our show.  Be sure you're clear on what you'd like to accomplish (overall) with your design when you meet with him.  (I'd assume you'd want to meet with him to learn mechanics first - fixtures & the board.  Then meet with him later to discuss your design and get help creating it.  Be sure you schedule these meetings AHEAD of time, as John's schedule can not accommodate last minute requests.



INSPIRATIOn (On-going assignment during the next phase:  REHEARSAL PROCESS)


While learning about aspects of design each week (see "Lighting Design" under "Rehearsal Process" weeks, you will be creating a Design Board to visually display your learning/research/inspiration for the lighting design for our show .  This will become the springboard for how you both communicate and execute your ideas.  Read about this task below.

Task: DESIGN PLANNING (Summative Grade - IB: Thinking Creatively): Create a lighting INSPIRATION BOARD for your design.  Since you may not know much about lighting yet, consider this task to be one in which you are "researching" others' lighting designs (from MANY different stage productions), and finding "looks" / "feels" / colors / directions of lighting design that inspire you for your own designs.  Collect these images to create a design board for both overall looks and also important moments in the show.  You will share this design board with John to communicate what you're going for with your own design.  Be sure to label each image, if applicable, with the Act/Scene/page or title of the "moment" from our show.

  • The goal of this task is to research and find information and inspiring images that will assist you in acquiring, designing, or creating realistic and visually interesting lighting for our production.  

  • Creativity thrives in community, so be sure to collaborate with others and your team along the way.

  • As you research, be sure to "collect" your research/inspiration in a location that you can easily access when it's time to create your team's Design Board.  (Google Classroom Research/Inspiration assignment)

  • Note:  You will be graded on your individual contributions to your team's Design Board OR you can create your own.

EXECUTION: (On-going assignment during the next phase:  REHEARSAL PROCESS) 

Designing and creating anything that's original requires planning.  How this planning "looks" is up to you, but you need to make sure that you make your designing/planning visible.  You will do this planning in your Process Journal, and it may include sketches and notes  about your designs, or photos of models that show your design in the planning phase.  This documentation process could also include a catalog of tutorial videos on how you learned to do an aspect of your role (such as videos on how to run our board, or other teaching videos outside of those listed above), interviews with experts, or documentation on mentoring you received in tool use or skill development in order to create your lighting design.  

Task (Weekly Formative Grade):  YOUR Process of Design

  • Track your process of design in your Process Journal, including any relevant research, images, sketches, pictures of prototypes, pictures of models, or further learning you did to create your design.  You must make your design process visible for this grade.  (See paragraph above.)

Task: FINAL LIGHTING DESIGN FOR THE SHOW (Summative Grade):  YOUR Completed Lighting Design (the lighting you create for the actual show)

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