Washes, Spots, Beams: Varied Options Key For Your Lighting Rig

With the available choices of fixtures to consider, they will help make your lighting system come alive and will add a dimension of creativity that will open many possibilities for you as a designer.

Washes, Spots, Beams: Varied Options Key For Your Lighting Rig
Whether you are looking washes, spots, breams or hybrids, each will help in making your lighting system come alive and will add a dimension of creativity that will open many possibilities for you as a designer.

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Washes, Spots, Beams: Varied Options Key For Your Lighting Rig

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Wash fixtures can come in color mixing or white-only versions, if you are in the LED range and typically the ARC source range will offer multiple color wheels or even CMY color mixing capabilities.

Overall, you definitely need wash fixtures in your rig.


The spot/profile (either name works as the overall feature set is the same), is where the visual POP or eye candy starts to show up in your lighting rig to create those stunning looks every designer longs for. These lights create that money shot, when a handheld camera takes a focused lens up shot toward the ceiling, picking up some hands on a guitar, and that beautiful gobo break up is beaming down through the haze.

Ahhhhh … such satisfaction to see that look. High-fives all around the tech booth!

That look comes from the spot/profile fixture. These fixtures naturally have a hard or focused edge. They are designed to punch through a wash light and really stand out in your design. They have at least one gobo wheel (often two) that will give you many choices of patterns.

Most often you would use this fixture over the stage to provide texture to floors, walls, scenery, etc., as well as beam through the air or sitting on the stage, giving you the ability to put up aerial effects through the sky.

When hung out over an audience, they can provide nice texture over a crowd, on house walls or just supplement additional beam effects that look great live and really show up well and add depth for camera shots.

Spot/Profile fixtures can also be used for key lighting, although you will want a variable frost in the fixture to help soften the hard edge. These units, in upper level models, can also come with framing shutters that allow you to cut the beam of light and shape it to an exact size, which can be a fantastic feature for advanced designs.

Additionally, these upper level models of fixtures often include animation wheels to allow for amazing water, fire, and other beautiful looks for designers, who want to take their design to another level.

Overall, spot/profile fixtures have a solid place in every design and open many opportunities for incredible designs. Coupled with a wash fixture, I consider them both as foundation in every good design.

More About Josh Holowicki
Josh Holowicki is a passionate Christ follower who has dedicated his energy to helping “The Church” incorporate technology to enhance the worship experience. Josh has a unique background in that he not only holds a B.B.A. from Eastern Michigan University, but has also spent five years on staff as the lighting director and one of two scenic designers at NorthRidge Church in Plymouth, Michigan. Having studied under or worked with some of the most recognized names in both the Christian and secular lighting industry, Josh has fulfilled what he believes is his personal mission and calling by founding E2i Design, an organization whose focus is to Educate, Empower, and Inspire ministries in the area of visual impact on the live worship experience. Josh lives in Michigan with his wife of 12 years, Michelle and their seven pound Yorkshire terrier Buster.
Get in Touch: josh.holowicki@e2idesign.com    More by Josh Holowicki

Latest Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, January-February 2018
The January-February 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about the many steps a church had to take in the aftermath of a fire, and another involving a church making the jump to 4K.

Article Topics

Technology · Lighting · Visual Arts · Lighting Design · Team Management · Budgeting · Gobo · Hybrids · Lighting · Ministry · Programming · Spots · All Topics

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