© ABOVE: BLUE SKY LIGHTGRID
The BlueSky LightGrid, currently located within Blue Sky Rental Studios in San Francisco, is a patent-pending lighting setup combining both hardware and software. Its purpose is to reduce the time, effort, and experience usually required to create sophisticated lighting arrangements for portrait and product photography, as well as video shoots.
Blue Sky Rental Studios was founded in 1996 by William Delzell, and over the years has grown into a premier destination for commercial photography. It offers access to daylight studios as well as equipment rental services to Bay Area photographers and filmmakers, and has played an active role in several Fortune 500 company ad campaigns (including Apple and Logitech). In 2006, it launched Blue Sky People, an online database that helps photographers find “real people” for their photography and video projects.
credit: Juan Zambrano
Years of experience dealing with lighting equipment and challenging lighting problems led to the invention of the BlueSky LightGrid. Requiring a room measuring at least 18 x 20 foot in size, with 12 foot ceilings, the LightGrid is comprised of four lighting panels measuring 9’x12’x3’ (three sides and overhead), and two 2400 watt generators. Behind each panel is a single bright fluorescent light that can be positioned anywhere in the panel, allowing you to view real-time lighting changes and make modifications without touching the lights or stands. FL lighting is cooler and 90 percent more energy efficient than tungsten hot lights, which saves on operating costs in the studio. The LightGrid is a robotically controlled, computerized installation that gives photographers the ability to create sophisticated lighting arrangements in a fraction of the time it takes with traditional set ups. As a direct result of time saved in adjusting lights, according to the company, some clients have experienced savings of up to 75 percent in studio rental costs, which typically run $250/hr or more.
The system software can also be upgraded with new lighting configurations and templates HD video or even 3D projects. Control of the system is also extremely easy, allowing even novice photographers to achieve professional lighting results without advanced technical knowledge of lighting or any previous studio lighting experience. Since this is a computerized system, users can choose from a wide variety of lighting templates designed by well-known photographers, and select these templates or make custom adjustments using any touch screen PDA device including wireless iPhones and tablets. This automated approach allows the setup to be changed from optimized lighting of a small object, such as a cookie, to lighting for a music video in only 30 seconds. And since templates allow you to quickly show the results of different lighting combinations, this system has received high interest from photo schools in the area.
Currently, the Blue Sky Light Grid is under construction at several other studio locations in the Bay Area, and the company plans to broaden distribution in the near future.
For more information, contact: www.blueskylightgrid.com