Archive for the 'Lighting' Category

Glow Worms In Motion

Sleeping in a cave for days in complete darkness doesn’t sound too appealing, but the resulting film from self-confessed “adventurous Canadian couple” Jordan and Jenna is this staggeringly beautiful time lapse of New Zealand’s famous glow worms and their bioluminescent glow.

Make sure your video player is set to 4K then sit back in awe at this.

For those of you more technically minded, the video was shot on a Canon 5D Mark III with 16-35mm F/2.8L, 50mm F/1.4, and 70-200mm F/4L lenses, and a Glidecam HD-2000.


The video deservedly won NZ Geographic‘s Photographer of the Year award for time-lapse, and you can read in more detail how this video was captured on Jordan and Jenna’s blog Stoked for Saturday here.



Le Petit Chef – Bouillabaisse

Something fun for Friday – a combination of 3D animation and motion capture to project onto a dinner table.

As dining environments get more immersive and offer multi-sensory experiences this is definitely something I can see a lot more of.  Great work from Skull Mapping.

Bon appétit!

Light Well

Working in the lighting industry I often see beautifully executed lighting ideas that by day look simple enough, but by night come alive and transform the space.

The Light Well by Studio Lux Nova is no exception.

light well1

Installed in the market square in Lahti, Finland, it brings the best of both aspects by performing during the day as well as at night.  The interactive nature engages people and creates a beautiful and inspiring focal point.

Drawing on the recent historical findings of the market square excavation site that discovered 150 year old water wells, the Light Well project offers a meeting place and a stage for small-scale events for residents and visitors in the heart of the city as part of the wider area’s overall lighting scheme.

light well2

A fantastic urban lighting solution that enhances the human experience as well as the exterior space.

More from Studio Lux Nova on their site here.

Bioluminescent Forest

I’ve seen projection mapping on lots of physical objects and defined surfaces before, but this is the first instance I’ve seen it interacting with nature and the result is really rather beautiful.


Photographer Tarek Mawad and animator Friedrich van Schoor spent six weeks on location to create the Bioluminescent Forest.  Immersed in nature it gives a glimpse into their imaginations if all elements of the forest had the ability to emit bioluminescent light.

As ever, worth hitting full screen on this one.

The drops of liquid light falling on the toadstools at around 2:15 is one of my favourite effects.

The final video is magical and ethereal mix, a “wonderland of blinking and twinkling organisms” that bring life to the more static areas of the forest.


It must have taken high levels of patience to deal with the accuracy required, but the result is impressively worthwhile.


They personified the forest to accentuate the natural beauty by creating luring luminescent plants and glowing magical mushrooms that speaks volumes to any visitor that enters the minds of the artists through viewing “bioluminescent forest”


Using pretty much just a laptop, a projector and a digital SLR camera “everything you see was created live, without any effects added in post-production”.


Behind the scenes footage can be seen here.


Lately it seems that drones are encroaching on everyday life more and more.  From security and warfare, to sight-seeing, Amazon deliveries, and, of course, good ol’ fashioned fun.

The word “drone” often seems to have a somewhat negative connotation to it, though this video definitely proves otherwise.  It falls into the latter category I mentioned, albeit with a touch more finesse and coordination than your average RC helicopter user crashing into trees at the park.

any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic

Sparked was performed live with perfectly synchronised human and drone quadcopter interactions to conjure up the magic of lampshades flying into life around an electrician who is working late into the night.

No CGI.  No post-production.  100% live and awesome.

The production was a collaboration between the incredibly famous Cirque du Soleil (if you ever get the chance to go to a show then you must), ETH Zurich, and Verity Studios.

For more information on the technology they used, and how they came to use lighting integrated into lamp shades see the video below.

Great work all round.

How Your Face Changes In Different Lighting

As a lighting designer I found this experiment particularly fascinating.

The impact that light can have on a person or a space never ceases to inspire and amaze me.

People are becoming more and more aware of the impact that lighting can have on how buildings and public spaces look and feel.  Combine this with the opportunity for energy savings, understanding the fast-paced developments in solid state technology, lumen outputs, thermal management, and CRI and you can begin to see why using a Lighting Designer is so important.

Via Pixel Bark.

Sensing Spaces: Architecture Reimagined

Seven architectural practices from six countries and four continents. 23,000 square feet. 72 days. One monumental exhibition

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend a private breakfast viewing of Sensing Spaces at the Royal Academy of Arts this week.  Invited by Pulsar it allowed a small group of us to experience the Architecture Reimagined exhibition in an uncrowded atmosphere, something unfamiliar for a popular exhibition at RA.

It was an exhibition I had been meaning to go to, but this opportunity was just the nudge I needed.  Offering a multi sensory experience of textures, smells, sights, sounds and lighting all combining in different ways to make each of the gallery spaces a unique and immersive experience.

Pezo von Ellrichshausen –
This space has been the ‘poster boy’ for the exhibition promo work so I wasn’t surprised that it was the first item we saw, standing above us all in the large gallery space.  Consisting of four spiral staircases hidden within wooden columns it allows you to make your way to the giddy heights of the gallery ceiling.




This offers you the usually unseen view of the gallery, the beautifully ornate golden ceiling and puts you at eye level with the angels detailed into the cornices.  You can then exit the platform down a ramp which, although unlit, gives you snippets of light through the floorboards before re-entering the bright gallery.



Kengo Kuma –
The first thing I noticed about this room was an unmistakeable air of calm as soon as we walked in.  Very low light levels and the scent of hinoki (Japanese cypress) and tatami (straw mat flooring) in the air combined to give a relaxed and welcoming feeling.  Once your eyes adjust to the relative darkness you notice the whittled sticks of bamboo softly  uplit from their base.  The concept was to “minimise materials but to maximise senses” and he certainly achieved that.



Eduardo Souto de Moura –
You almost pass through these pieces without realising they are actually part of the exhibition space.  The consideration has been placed on classic architecture and styling constructed with modern materials and techniques, in this case concrete.  What I really enjoyed was the attention to detail on each of the arches, they looked as if they could have easily been cast from the original.



Álvaro Siza –
I might have missed this piece if it wasn’t pointed out to us as it is actually outside the building as you approach.  Coloured concrete columns dot the courtyard, though looking closely only one is complete.  Taking inspiration to imitate the architecture of the nearby Burlington House.



Li Xiaodong –
This was the one area I genuinely got lost in.  A maze of hazel branches eerily backlit by an illuminated flooring system allow you to wander into various narrow pockets and viewpoints.  The pathway eventually opens up into a pit of pebbles, a welcome contrast of crunching underfoot that most of us smiled at, like we were doing something naughty in breaking the few minutes of near silence we had exploring the maze.  A large mirror reflects the pebbled space making it seem much larger and adding a tranquil sensation as you take it all in.





Diébédo Francis Kéré –
One of the most enjoyable rooms was a white corrugated plastic structure that is accompanied by a box of giant coloured straws which allow each guest to contribute to the structure, making it evolutionary and growing with every person that passes through.  This combination of interaction and coloured straws put a smile on everyone’s face, giggling in an almost childlike manner in seeing who put a straw in the highest or most obscure place.




Grafton Architects –
This was actually my favourite space, probably partly because of my lighting design bias.  Once your eyes adjust to the adjoining rooms you realise that the light is shifting.  Not just in colour, but also in intensity, mimicking daylight and moonlight over the course of 24 hours (courtesy of Pulsar).  You only need a few minutes here sitting or standing to appreciate the subtly changing conditions, but I found myself in here for much longer.





What I really liked about the whole private viewing was the relaxed atmosphere, first walking through each of the spaces with a representative from the Royal Academy giving a brief explanation on each one, and then after I wandered back through them at my own pace.  Noticing things I didn’t quite catch the first time around, or seeing something from another angle.

Wandering through in any order that you like “you are as much a part of this exhibition as the work itself“, and this encourages you to “reimagine the world around you“.

The complete exhibition is brilliant, whether you’ve been meaning to or not I would really recommend going to see it.  If you want any more information there is a short video from Kate Goodwin, the exhibition curator, here and a who’s who of the participating architects here.

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