We have posted in the past on ways that stage lighting can dramatically change the appearance of stage drapes. One project I particularly remember was the way that Anne Militello’s innovative lighting design made Metal Mesh Drapes look like an Impressionist painting. There was a recent project, however, that really surprised me in the way that stage lighting transformed the drapery.
About six weeks ago, we were contacted by the designer for the Slipknot tour, who was interested in a pair of custom drapes made of red velvet with a black logo on each. We were excited to be selected for the project, and after several discussions regarding fabric options and techniques, we began manufacturing the Mixed Media drapes.
First, we made the flat drapes from IFR 13oz Apollo Velour in Jezebel. This lightweight synthetic velour has a lush velvety nap but is less bulky than heavier weight velours (making the drapes easier to hang and transport during a multi-city tour), and the color is rich and vibrant. Then, for the applique, we started by digitally printing a paper pattern from the logo artwork provided by the client. Our sewing staff then used the pattern to cut two pieces of the logo from IFR Black 15oz Encore, which they then appliqued onto the Jezebel Apollo Drapes.
The drapes looked beautiful hanging in our warehouse, with the black logos popping on the red drapes. But what really amazed me was seeing the drapes in concert transformed with dramatic stage lighting. As the lighting changes, the drapes appear to be various shades of blue and purple, and the logos are highlighted in shades of fuchsia, red, and pale yellow. If I didn’t know better, I would find it very hard to believe that these are red drapes with black logos!
Want to see more of this project? I think you’ll enjoy this video that shows a bit of the beginning of the process (the logo artwork) and the final result in concert. (Side Note: I love the background music by local L.A. band It’s OK! – check them out at http://www.itsoktheband.com).
The countless ways in which a talented lighting designer can transform a tour design never fails to amaze me. Hats off to the lighting designer for this Slipknot tour, and to all the talented lighting designers out there!