Technical and Artistic – Learn Stage Lighting .com

Check Out All of The Posts About Technical and Artistic Concepts Here:

What to Do When the Show Runs Off it’s Tracks
Picture this: You're running through your setlist, down the agenda, or through the service flow....things are going well.  You're hitting[...]
How Do I Create Great Lighting Effects With Color?
Color is by far my favorite attribute of light. Whether you're a professional lighting designer, or just want a great[...]
How Can I Control Lighting From My Mac?
We see posts on a weekly basis in the forums and on Facebook groups where people will ask what lighting[...]
Onyx Video Training Tutorials
Want to learn Onyx, but don't know where to begin?  Here, I've put together my best Onyx video resources in[...]
How to Use the Elgato Stream Deck to Control Stage Lighting
In this article, we dive into how to use Elgato Stream Deck with different lighting and other show control software[...]
How to Keep Your Lights Running in Tip-Top Shape
If you want your lights to live a nice, long, happy life, it's important to take great care of them.[...]
How Do I Program a Basic Moving Light?
In this video and post, we're going to help walk you through on how to program a basic moving light[...]
What Are the Rules to Using Color in Stage Lighting?
If you open your eyes, and you're like most people, you see color. I know this is simplifying it a[...]
Why Does My Lighting Look Orange On Camera?
When working with lighting and video you'll find that it can be very tricky to not get everything to look[...]
How Do I Control DMX Lights?
Do you have DMX Lights but don't know how to control them? Sure you can set the lights on Sound[...]
3 Things I Wish I Knew Before Using Elation’s ONYX
ONYX has become my favorite professional console. Elation's Onyx was formerly known as Martin M-PC / M-Series and since the[...]
Can I Use The M-Touch and M-Play with Onyx without a Touchscreen?
Recently, I had received a challenge from one of our Learn Stage Lighting Labs members wanting to know how much[...]
What is RDM and Why Does It Matter to Me?
If you've been working with lighting for a while, you might be aware of the term RDM, or remote device management. [...]
What are Submasters and Playbacks?
Sitting down over a meal with a venue owner, I was asked the question "Do we need a computer software[...]
What is DMX? DMX 512 for Lighting Explained
When you're beginning with lighting, it's not going to be long before you have questions about DMX. In lighting, DMX[...]
What DMX Mode Should I Put My Lights In?
Whether you're working with LED's or moving-head lights, at some point you have to decide which mode you're going to run[...]
How to Choose a Basic Lighting Console (Software vs Hardware)
If you are brand new and just getting started with lighting you have come to the right place. Over the[...]
How to Wrap Cables Properly (And Save Time!)
Do you ever come across poorly wrapped cables that just tangle and knot the second you go to use them?[...]
5 Ways To Make Your Live Stream Video Look Great
In this 2 part video series, we're teaming up with Ballast Media to discuss 5 ways to make your live[...]
Introduction to Jands Vista (Now ChromaQ Vista)
I remember the first time that I sat down behind a Jands Vista when they first brought the console out[...]
The Complete Guide to Beam Fixtures
Want a huge beam of light that zooms across the sky? Stepping back into history, the first way to accomplish[...]
How do I Focus Stage Lighting?
While moving lights are more common than ever, non-moving LED and conventional lights are by far the most common lights[...]
How do I Bolt Together Lighting Truss?
I remember my first job in lighting clearly. I was working as a tech/laborer for a small, rural lighting company[...]
Should You Trigger Your Church’s Lighting From Stage or From The Booth?
When it comes to lighting in the church, I believe this is the area that has the most potential in[...]
How to Buy the Right Lighting Today That Will Still Work For You In The Future
One of my biggest frustrations in life is when I buy something, and then a year or 2 later, it[...]
What Do I Do When my DMX Light Doesn’t Work Right?
If you have a DMX Light that's not working properly or even at all, here are some effective steps to[...]
3 Things I Wish I Knew Before Using the LightShark
Since starting with the LightShark it's become one of my favorite consoles to work with. If you've been following Learn[...]
How Do I Focus Moving Lights?
Moving lights are wonderful tools that are becoming more and more commonplace in the lighting world every day.  The ability[...]
How Do You Sync Visuals and Lighting Together for DJ or EDM Lighting?
When working as a DJ or an EDM artist eventually you're going to want to incorporate graphics or visuals into[...]
Review: M-Touch Lighting Console
Recently, I took the opportunity to do a full review of the M-Touch lighting console which I recently purchased. I[...]
How do I Hang a Light?
I often walk into churches where I either a) see something unsafe or b) go "what were they thinking?", when[...]
What is TouchOSC and How Do I Use it With Lighting?
I'm a big fan of getting as much hands-on control as possible when I'm programming and running lights. That's why,[...]
How to Program With DMXIS
Enttec DMXIS is one of the very best pieces of DMX software for bands wanting to run their own shows.[...]
What are Fixture Numbers and Why Do I Need Them?
The first lesson I learned on a modern, moving light console was how to patch fixtures. The 2nd lesson I[...]
How Do You Run Your Band’s Lighting from a Console?
How do you set up your lighting console for a band? The answer will depend on the band you are[...]
How do I Focus Lighting Specials?
In this post, we"focused" on creating an even wash of light - what I would call "the foundation of a[...]
What is Beam Angle? What is Field Angle? Why Does it Matter?
If you've been reading LSL for any amount of time, you know that I am big on making you an[...]
How Do I Setup My First sACN or Art-Net Device?
When looking to set up your first devices, networking can be a challenge when first starting out. In this post,[...]
How to Trigger Your Church’s Lighting from Stage
To trigger your church lighting from the stage, we're going to start with two different programs that I like to[...]
Review – ENTTEC Pixel Port
ENTTEC has a new way to get control of LED pixels - and it's easier than ever! A few months[...]
How to Use LiveTraker with DMXis to Control Lights from Stage
LiveTraker is a program I've been using more of lately to output MIDI, audio, and even videos. Up until now,[...]
How Do I Address My DMX Lights or Dimmers?
One of the first things that you need to do when you get a new light out of the box[...]
Bit By The Lighting Bug – Interview with Jeff Waful
If you've been reading Learn Stage Lighting for awhile, you may know that I am quite a fan of jam[...]
How Do I Run DMX Over “Ethernet” Cable?
DMX, the signal we use to talk to our stage lights, requires the use of DMX cable so that everything[...]
Fog and Foggers – The Ultimate Guide
Have you ever woken up, looked outdoors and seen beautiful, hanging fog with the sun streaming through? Perhaps you were[...]
How do I Create an Awesome, Even Wash of Stage Light?
You've got lights and a console all set up and working, but when you turn everything on you've got huge[...]
Can You Make a Great Lighting Rig with 1 DMX Universe?
Talking with some students from Learn Stage Lighting Labs I've found that there are some situations where you are limited[...]
What are Art-Net and sACN?
It used to be that we just used simple DMX cable out of our console to our lights to control[...]
How to Use a Multimeter for Stage Lighting + Buyers Guide
One of the top 5 tools that I recommend to anyone getting into stage lighting is an electrical multimeter. An[...]
What is Bench Focusing? + My Complete Bench Focusing Guide
Do your ellipsoidals not seem as "punchy" as they once were?  Do you want to get significantly more output from[...]
The Complete Guide To Stage Lighting Power Connectors & Plugs
When you're looking to install a lighting system, buy new gear or begin in stage lighting, the amazing variety of[...]
Should You Buy Spot, Wash, or Beam Lights?
When you begin shopping for new light fixtures you generally have the main categories of a spot, wash, beam, and[...]
I Just Bought An ENTTEC DMX Interface – Now What?
One of the very best ways to begin controlling DMX lighting is with an ENTTEC USB interface and any number[...]
So You Want A Lighting Visualizer…
Visualizing your lighting on the computer is one of the very best ways to waste a solid afternoon.  🙂 Seriously,[...]
How to Begin With The Chauvet Obey 40
The Chauvet Obey 40 is a really popular and basic DMX lighting console. If you've sat down at one, however,[...]
Should I Use Wireless DMX? The Complete Guide to Running Data to Your Lights Wirelessly
Until we get wireless power, running wireless data to our lights is one of the biggest time-savers and problem solvers[...]
How To Begin with the Onyx NX Touch
The ONYX NX-Touch has become one of my favorite PC console wings to work with because it allows you to[...]
How to Make Your Big Event Special (Without Losing Your Shirt)
This post has been brought to you by Pro Lighting Rental. Imagine this: You have a big show/service/drama/production coming up,[...]
How Do You Use Timecode with Onyx?
In this post, we're going to break it down on how to use timecode with Onyx. Lately, I've seen a[...]
How to Create Movement (Without Expensive Moving Lights)
There's no doubt that moving lights are cool. Really cool.  And a lot of fun to play with. But the[...]
What is a Lighting Console?
You walk into a room- lights are fading up and down, moving, and colors and shapes are dancing on the[...]
How to Use ONYX for Church Lighting
In these video tutorials, I dive into how to use ONYX for church lighting. I've worked with many students and[...]
How to Use LED Pixel Tape on Your Stage
In this video, I walk you through how to use LED pixel tape on your stage. Pixels have come a[...]
How to Prevent Power Loss When Using a Mobile Generator
Today's post is a guest post written by Lukas Conant of ATI Electrical.   Have you ever had a power[...]
What Do I Need to Begin with My First Lighting Network?
Having lights set up on a network is more common now than ever before. Generally, it used to be where[...]
What Makes Big Concerts So Cool? The Dynamic Range of Light:
You might know what dynamic range is in the audio world; it’s the difference between the loudest and softest sound.[...]
What is an NSI Microplex Lighting System?
NSI Microplex is a proprietary control protocol made by the NSI company- now owned by Leviton lighting.  Microplex is a digital protocol,[...]
How Do LEDs Save Money?
I remember the day I first worked with LED stage lighting. Back in the time frame of the mid-2000's, I[...]
What to Lay Out on Buttons, On-Screen and on Faders
One of the questions I often get from people is this: How should you prioritize certain cues over others when[...]
The Complete Guide to Wash Fixtures
Today, I want to take you on a tour through the different types of lighting fixtures that you may encounter.[...]
How Many Colors can an LED really make?
Today, I am going to share how many colors can an LED really make. There's a lot of myths out[...]
How to Begin With the LightShark
I had the opportunity to work with LightShark and created videos on how the LightShark LS-1 and LS-Core work. In[...]
How to Fix Broken DMX Cables
If you're like many folks doing lighting, and you setup and teardown your lights, cables are gonna break!  It's just[...]
What is the Lightshark?
If you have been following Learn Stage Lighting for a while now you know that at times I will review[...]
What is the Difference Between Basic, Intermediate and Professional Lighting Consoles?
On Learn Stage Lighting I often have the usual consoles that I like to refer to and work with. However,[...]
How to Run Lights Live to Music
Are you ready to take on your first project of running lights for a live band? It doesn’t have to[...]
How Can A DMX Splitter Save You Time and Money?
One of the most common questions I get is "Do I Need a DMX Splitter"? And while I'd like to[...]
How Do I Control Pixels With ENTTEC’s ELM?
Perhaps you have heard of ENTTEC's ELM. What is it exactly? ENTTEC ELM is basically a Media Server. It's a[...]
How to Begin With Lasers
Lasers are cool. I mean, who doesn't want a pencil-thin beam of light scanning across the room to add to[...]
Fundamentals of a Mixing Console – The Master Control For An Audio System
I remember the very first time I stepped up to a large format analog mixing console. It was in Chicago[...]
Should I Use Grand MA3, Vista, Hog, Chamsys, or Onyx?
A very common situation is trying to select which professional grade console you should go with. Now, more than ever[...]
How Do I Save Money Buying Lighting Gear?
Today I want to help save you some money when you plan to purchase lighting gear. Whether you are looking[...]
How do I Program a Two-Scene Lighting Console?
A two-scene lighting console is a great way to learn the basics of stage lighting- it's just you, a handful[...]
What is HTP? What is LTP? Why Should I Care?
Imagine this...You sit down at your lighting console and start bringing up various looks on stage and recording the scenes[...]
Microplex to DMX – The Complete Guide
Say you have a DMX lighting system and want to use a microplex dimmer or console.  Can it be done?[...]
How do I Setup a Portable Lighting System?
As I work and talk with people in the church world, I find a lot of churches that rent or[...]
5 Basic Things You Need to Know About Moving Light Consoles
I have been accused of being "old school" in the past.  True, I was the only guy in my lighting[...]
What are Strobes and Blinders, and How Do I Use Them in My Show?
When it comes to creating a punch of light on stage or in the audience, professional lighting designers turn to[...]
What are the Basic Parts of a Stage Lighting System?
A massive lighting show takes up a whole arena, bathing an artist or speaker in vibrant light.   A corporate[...]
The Complete Guide to Spot Fixtures
We started off our guide to basic lighting fixtures with the wash fixtures. Today we will overview spot fixtures or[...]
How Do I Begin with ENTTEC D-Pro?
If you're looking for a lighting console that a) isn't going to break the bank, b) isn't too basic, but[...]
Online Training For Elation’s Onyx (formerly M-PC)
Elation's Onyx software is hands-down my very favorite professional-grade software for running lights. Not only is the software freely downloadable,[...]
How Do I Tape Down a Cable? – The Complete Guide to Taping Down Cables
When it comes down to it, we run a lot of cables in the world of lighting. Data one way,[...]
How To Get Started In Set Design Without The Hassle
Set design can be one of the most underutilized aspects of stage lighting in many circles. Sometimes it's because people[...]
Run Audio, Lights, and Video Together: LiveTraker Review
A question I often receive is: "What program can someone use to trigger lights, play videos, and music?" The truth[...]
Do I Need Need Moving Lights? + Moving Lights Buyers Guide
Moving lights are a load of fun! Whether you're a band, church, DJ or in the theatre world, the dream[...]
How Do You Manage Your Cables for Lighting, Audio, and Video? My Favorite Tools to Get it Done!
Keeping your cables and wires organized may seem simple but it also very important especially when it comes to safety[...]
How Do I Begin With M-PC?
M-PC is now Onyx - Learn more about Onyx here! M-PC is a professional-grade lighting console just waiting to be[...]
Should I Leave My Lights On All The Time? DMX Relays and Sequencers 101
This one is for the folks who have their lights permanently installed: Do you leave your LED's and moving lights powered[...]
Eurolite Bigfoot: First Impressions
There’s very little info around about the Eurolite Bigfoot DMX controller, so I thought I’d post a few first impressions[...]
How Do You Choose the Right DJ Lights?
When getting started as a DJ, the equipment and the number of options you have can be overwhelming. In this[...]
Programming: How to Set Up Your Cues for Success!
Whether you've got a simple console or something complex, learning how to lay out your lighting looks into something useful[...]
Should I Buy a PC-Based or Hardware-Based Lighting Console?
There's always the age-old debate that comes up about whether you should go with a PC-Based or Hardware-Based lighting console.[...]
How To Clean Your Stage Lighting (Without Making a Mess)
When was the last time you cleaned your stage lighting equipment? Perhaps it's been awhile since you last were up[...]
Can You Use Microphone Cables for Lighting? DMX Vs. XLR Demystified
When it comes to plugging in your lights to DMX, ask 5 different people, and you'll probably get 5 different[...]
What Software Should I Use to Control LED Pixels?
When it comes to working with individual LED pixels, pixel tape or some other pixel products, the first step is[...]
How to Troubleshoot DMX Problems
One of the most crushing feelings you can encounter when working with lighting comes when things don't work right!  [...]
4 Things I Wish I Knew Before Using ENTTEC D-Pro
There are a lot of PC based lighting consoles available. Some are great and others, not so much. But one[...]
How Do I Begin With Onyx?
Here on Learn Stage Lighting, it is my goal to feature and teach the very best in lighting consoles and[...]
Event Lighting for Fun and Profit Pt.2
How to do Special Event Lighting For Your Church - Part 2 This is another post that gets me excited.[...]
What Angles are Best for Stage Lighting?
Go to any theatre, large church, or other entertainment event space, and you'll see lights mounted everywhere, all pointing at[...]
How Do I Set Up a Lighting Console “Show Computer”?
A funny thing is happening as we move forward in time.  Computers are getting faster, cheaper and more reliable, and[...]
3 Reasons Why LTP Rules, Even For Conventional Lights
Back Here, I talked about the differences between HTP and LTP, and why it's important.  I remember, not all that[...]
5 Simple Values That Will Propel You Forward in the Entertainment Industry
Working day in and day out in the entertainment industry, I naturally see a lot of people and meet a[...]
What Are Cues and Cuelists?
Yesterday I told a story of a venue I worked at that had no ideas of the capabilities of their[...]
How Do I Convert, Split and Merge DMX? What if I Do it Wrong?
If you're using more than a few DMX fixtures, or have them spread out across your stage, you're going to[...]
5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Using ENTTEC DMXIS
Here at Learn Stage Lighting I've mentioned and worked with ENTTEC DMXIS very often. It's a great program for those[...]
Control Lots of Pixels – Without Losing Your Mind!
If you’ve played around with controlling LED pixels, you know that getting the infrastructure set up to control your pixels[...]
What is the ENTTEC Pixel Octo, and Why Do I Care?
The ENTTEC Pixel Octo is a new product that drives pixels. This unit will drive any type of LED pixel[...]
What Lighting Console Should I Buy?
If you been around for a while it's very obvious that I really like Lighting Consoles. Why is this? The[...]
The Complete Guide To Stage Lighting Data Connectors & Plugs
In the last post, I wrote about the common power connectors and plugs the stage lighting.  If you haven't already[...]
How do I Use MIDI Hardware to Control My Lighting Console?
In the past 10 years, lighting consoles have changed and progressed A LOT! Particularly, in the last few years we've[...]
What Lights Should I Buy?
When you write a website dedicated to teaching stage lighting, the most common question you get is "Should I buy[...]
LED Tape and Pixels 101 – How to Create Custom Lighting for Your Stage!
Over the past few years, using custom LED tape has been all the rage on stages of all sizes. Just[...]
How to Light For IMAG – 5 Ways to Improve Your Lighting Rig for the Camera
If you've recently gone visited a large church, attended at child's graduation or flown to a national sales meeting, chances[...]
What Are Stage Directions?
Whether you are working directly with musicians, setting up equipment, or planning your next staging design, clear communication is really[...]
How to Pre-Wire Your Lights to Save Yourself Time and Frustration…
Pre-wiring has been one of the tricks that professionals have been using for years to cut down setup time. If[...]
Grow Your Lighting Skills Today: Interview with Brad Schiller
Once again, I'm really excited to bring you an interview with a lighting professional! Brad Schiller has been in the[...]
How to Wire DMX for Stage Lighting
For beginners in stage lighting, one of the ideas that can be baffling is how to wire up all of[...]
Where Do I Focus My Lights?
You may have just read the headline to this article and thought "duh!  At the stage!" as the answer to[...]
Don’t Despair! – How to Be Inspired In Lighting
If you're like many people who take up lighting as a hobby, you've probably spent a few hours looking at[...]
What is Stage Lighting? (And Why Should I Use it?)
Stage lighting, in the obvious realm, is lighting that is on a stage. Practically, we see that stage lighting provides[...]
What is DMX Polarity and Why Do I Care?
Many entry level DMX consoles, such as the Chauvet Obey 40 and 70, have a curious little switch that is[...]
What is a DMX Profile or Fixture Profile?
A couple of questions I hear often are what is a DMX fixture profile? Why do I need one? And[...]
When Should I Use Color on My Stage?
Color is probably the most powerful single tool that we have in our toolbelts as lighting folks. Whether on the[...]
How Do I Create and Install My Own Fixture Library for DMXis, D-Pro, or Show Buddy Active?
With DMXIS, Show Buddy Active, and D-PRO, if you don't see your fixture in the patch/fixture library section, you have[...]
Should I Buy Moving Lights or Non Moving Lights?
In this post, we're going to take on the great debate of moving lights. Should you buy moving lights or[...]
Why Moving Lights aren’t just for rock stars: When Moving Lights DON’T Move!
I was recently speaking with a church tech director who was working out the details for a future lighting purchase[...]
How Much Light Do I Have? Footcandles, Lumens and Lux
If you've ever sat down to attempt the purchase of new lights, one of the first questions you have is[...]
Upcoming Webinar Trainings
Here on Learn Stage Lighting, I periodically offer free live training webinars.  Check them out and sign up below! Onyx[...]
How to Program an LED Par Light with DMX
In this video, we will review how to properly set up and get you started with the basics of programming[...]
Free and Cheap Lighting and AV Resources During COVID-19
Stuck inside? COVID-19 has left many without work, or at least stuck at home with extra free time. On this[...]
My Favorite Flashlights for Lighting (and WHY)
Every day I try to provide helpful tips when it's come to lighting and the equipment that I use every[...]
How Do I Find Out What DMX Channels My Lights Have? And How Do I Control That from My Console?
Here is a question that I get all to often here on Learn Stage Lighting - "I've got __________ no-name[...]
Simple, PC Based Lighting Console Setups
In this post I'm going to share with you some simple but effective console setups that you can use with[...]
Review: Stage Light Company Hex Par Pro 12 and Pix Bar Hex Pro 6
Recently, I was given the opportunity to review the Stage Light Company Pro Par Hex 12 and Pix Bar Pro Hex[...]
What is the “Standard” Lighting Design?
One of the questions that often hits my inbox starts like this: "What is the standard lighting design for a[...]
How Do I Run My Show From Stage?
Picture this - you're in a band, are a DJ or are in a small church worship team, and you[...]
Is it True That I Shouldn’t Touch the Lamp?
If you work with churches, in theatre, or production, you've probably heard the rumor that you aren't supposed to touch[...]
How Do I Setup My First Lighting Network?
Whether you like it or not, networking is quickly becoming a necessary part of stage lighting. While you still can[...]
How Do I Begin Working With A Professional Lighting Console?
It used to be that there was a divide in the lighting world between professional and consumer - between big[...]
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