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LEDs, Lady Gaga Smell-Well, and Projections at Nuit Blanche 2012

Did you go to Nuit Blanche 2012 in Toronto in October?  Laura and I did, and we took some photos that I’m just now able to get to after the trade show season.  I spoke with lots of people on the street at Nuit Blanche this year, and everyone seemed to have a great time — the only thing that was a bit hard to manage was the influx of people that were present downtown for this event.  There were some awesome exhibits and light installations — but anything interactive was pretty much mobbed with people and hard to really get a sense of the artists’ messages.  Regardless, it was a lot of fun!  Check out some photos below, and experience my entire trip with the photo gallery at the bottom!

There were some fun words at the top of this post that describe how f*cked up some of the Nuit Blanche-goers got, it’s worth a quick peek.  It’s totally true — lack of organization, and a real lack of general community.  Read the post.

As we walked by the Hudson’s Bay Company in Toronto we noticed this freaky storefront window scene that we had to stop and check out — and it was Lady Gaga’s perfume on display.  That’s some pretty crazy perfume marketing, huh!  I definitely liked the design enough to take photos…

Lady Gaga's Smellwell

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Apparently this perfume makes you smell like a psycho mad scientist:

Lady Gaga Does Window Displays

Oh, officially of course Lady Gaga had nothing to do with Nuit Blanche, but her display was part of MY Nuit Blanche, so that’s why it’s here!

Something that we saw but didn’t really get a chance to experience was Beam of Underground Sun by Arezoo Talebzadeh and Kaveh Ashourinia — ostensibly, they had taken some very bright LED sources and put them down under the street at several meters down.  Arezoo and Kaveh also added some powerful fans and some silk cloth under the street to give the effect of waves of light being cast up through the grate they chose in the street.  Check this one out, it is beautiful, especially with the photos of no people around it:

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This, however, is what the real Nuit Blanche Beam of Underground Sun experience was, which was different than intended I assume but had its own jua de vive, if you will:

It was still beautiful, just mobbed with people standing directly in the way of the beam and the overall everything of the piece.

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You can kind of see down into the shaft with the fan, the fabric, and the LED units:

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It was pretty cool to be standing in an intersection of Bloor Street with no one trying to honk at me or run me down!

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Probably one of the coolest things I saw this year at Nuit Blanche was the installation called Planes by Tricia Brown Dance Company — and it was awesome!

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…and behind the walls you can see a little behind-the-scenes action!  I almost didn’t want to see this — the movement of the dancers and the projections themselves were so riveting that seeing the how-to took away from it for me.  Ah, the life of making mystery for the audience!

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Check out the Gallery View below of the Nuit Blanche event in Toronto — and check out the official Scotiabank page on Nuit Blanche so you can see the intended (and actual) views of the art from this year’s show!

Jim Hutchison Promoted to Product Manager at CAST Software

W00T! <hands raised in the air quite in the same fashion as if I didn’t care>

So this is some pretty awesome news I want to share!  I am not really a press release guy, but this is MY press release!  Sorry I’ve had to be so secretive about this news, there was some Immigration stuff that had to happen first before it could all be released!  I’ve taking over the Product Manager gig at CAST Software in Toronto, Canada for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer!  I’m moving up here to Canada for a while, but still doing the tradeshow route and traveling the globe talking about light and the world of lighting!  Here’s the release, sent earlier today:

TORONTO — CAST Software of Toronto announces the promotion of Jim Hutchison, creator and editor of the internationally renowned JimOnLight.com, stepping up to assume the role of Product Manager for CAST Software’s wysiwyg as well as for Vivien Virtual Event Designer, the CAST software suite for the special events industry.  

Hutchison has been contributing marketing and technical copy for CAST Software as their Social Media Manager since early 2009, in addition to writing various articles for the company’s newsletter, The Plan. Given his technical experience with the company’s products, CAST has chosen Hutchison to lead the way forward for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer.

“I’m beyond thrilled to be leading the amazing development team at CAST,” Hutchison said. “I’ve been a wysiwyg User since Release 4, and I don’t think that there is a design I haven’t created in wysiwyg since the early part of this century. I love the products, I love the teams, and I love talking to our Users about how wysiwyg works for them. I’m excited to bring my industry enthusiasm and knowledge to the Product Manager role.”

Before joining CAST Software, Hutchison was a full time writer, lighting designer, and professor, teaching lighting design and production lighting technology. He started JimOnLight.com in 2008, writing about all genres and applications of lighting. He is a practicing lighting designer, a member of United Scenic Artists Local 829 and a contributing member of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America.

Gil Densham, CEO of CAST, says, “We are excited to have Jim’s enthusiasm and industry expertise in the Product Manager’s role. Knowing the vigor Jim invests, it will no longer be quiet around CAST as we look forward to the future, with a grander vision for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer.”

Email Hutchison at jimh@cast-soft.com or phone him at +1.416.597.2278 x271.

Somebody asked me at PLASA Focus if I was still going to be writing JimOnLight.com.  I had to respond with “OMFG OF COURSE I AM.  I’m JimOnLight!

The Rise of LX Injected, The Centre for Social Innovation, and the Party to End All Parties

I am kinda loving life.  A lot.  This last week, a new venture that I started with Amanda Lynne Ballard got its wings and took off – LX Injected.

What does LX Injected do?  We create large scale light art.  We also aim to change the world through light.

Toronto’s Centre for Social Innovation just bought a new building in which to create and innovate, and they threw a monster party in said building.  The Party to End All Parties was on Friday of this last week, and people did much rejoicing.  LX Injected was asked to come and turn the space into a work of art in which people could come together and have a blast.

Enjoyment was what we aimed for, and that’s what happened.  We also got to work with some amazing people (Tonya and Colleen, you both rock) and we were fortunate enough to be able to light up a massive, open, and beautiful space.

Check out some images from the evening, courtesy of Amanda Lynne – and also check out the Centre for Social Innovation’s website.  They’re doing really freaking cool stuff.  Life changing stuff.  You might be asking yourself what exactly – so here’s a blurb from the Centre’s website:

The Centre for Social Innovation is a dynamic space in downtown Toronto, Canada. Our mission is to spark and support new ideas that are tackling the social, environmental, economic and cultural challenges we face today. We’re creating the spaces that social innovation needs to thrive and we’re contributing a few of our own ideas along the way!

Cool.  What an amazingly guerrilla and fun design.  I really enjoyed this project!  Support the life changers, use your brains like you’re a ninja!

The first set of images here are of the initial site visit walkthrough with the lovely miss Colleen Diamond.  We chatted about the feel and purpose of the space, and how we could pull some good ol’ urban planning magic to turn our space into a “place.”  Colleen was also quoted during that meeting as saying “nerd is the new passion.”  We love you, Colleen!

After building some very simple fixtures, shopping some fixtures, and purchasing the right lamps (we went mostly 50W PAR20 halogen narrow floods and some 500W wash units for color and splash), we had the evening the night before to get into the space at dusk for hang and focus.

The space before the install:

Natural and fluorescent light

Windows

The Install Night

After the evening before spent building fixtures and wiring them up, the next evening before the actual event we had the space to play, experiment on the various surfaces with light, and get everything rigged and working.  It was an amazing evening, and that warehouse came alive!

Essentially, the design went for motion.  We accented the things we felt were important, created two separate saturated blue areas on contrasting sides of the space for people to be able to “cool off,” if you will from the white light shining on the walls.  With the brick walls themselves we chose to angle the spots grazing the walls to also create an implied motion around the space.  The space around the “bar” created in the venue was a great feeling for us – we lit the glasses and bar surface at a low angle, and through the windows of the space we were able to illuminate the faded but yet still amazing Coca-Cola logo on the side of the adjacent building.

The Bar and the Coke Logo

The Party

The evening was outstanding.  Great people, everyone having fun, people playing in the shadows we created, and people making their own shadows.  Amazing, fun, and I would do it again in a second.  Check out some pics from the party evening, and then below everything is a gallery of all of the shots.  Enjoy!

The gallery of images from the process:

All photos on this page are protected under an Attribution-NonCommercial-No-Derivitives license.  You can repost the photos and content as long as you give attribution to JimOnLight.com and LX Injected.  Photographer credit, unless otherwise noted, is Amanda Lynne Ballard.

Let’s Play CHECK IN with JimOnLight.com in Canada!

I’m in Toronto right now.  Next week I’ll be in Phoenix for a week long show run.  The week after that?  I have no idea.  Let me check my calendar.

So, for those of you who were at the Broadway Lighting Master Classes this year, sorry I missed you!  I wasn’t able to attend this year because of a gig I have in Toronto right now, but I hear I missed some fun partying in the Big Apple!

Let’s see:

I’m lighting up the inside of an excellent space in downtown Toronto this week for the Centre for Social Innovation, who just bought a building!  I’m partnered in a company with everybody’s favorite lumen hunter, Amanda Lynne Ballard, called LX Injected – we’ve started up this venture to bring light art on a large scale to the world.  One of our upcoming projects is the Centre’s new building – LX Injected is lighting up the inside of one of the floors for a gathering this evening, and we’re happy with the product we made last night!  I’ll post lots of pictures after the event is over this weekend.  We’re extremely excited to help out the Centre for Social Innovation and bring some lovely lux to their new digs!

Most of all, I just wanted to check in with the world.  I hope everyone is having an excellent week, a wonderful summer and end to the school year, and enjoyable production and design experiences!  Get out there and light up the darkness!

CAST Software Has A Blog!

That’s right, you heard it here first!  Those crazy cats at CAST Software (oh wait) have launched a blog to spread the good word of lighting among the populus.  Help me do the “Welcome to the Internet, CAST Software Blog” wave and check out the blog!