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Light technician


Light technician

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Light technicians are involved with setting up and controlling lighting equipment for entertainment venues (film or theater). Toward this end, they work under the direction of the cinematographer and gaffer (in film) or the lighting designer and master electrician (in theater). They are responsible for the movement and set up of various pieces of lighting equipment for visual effects.

Theatrical light technician

In a theatrical setting a lighting technician will be responsible for building the lighting rig in the theater space as per the design drawings of the lighting designer.

A common hierarchy in a theatre is as follows:

  • Head (Master) Electrician – In charge of overseeing the lighting crew, interpreting the Lighting Designer’s drawings, and ultimately responsible for the building and maintenance of the lighting rig.
  • Assistant Electrician – Assistant to the head electrician, usually in charge of maintaining paperwork, and keeping up with changes that are made to the rig during the process of technical rehearsals.
  • Electrician – labor used by the master electrician to construct the rig. Duties of an electrician include: hanging lights in the proper place, Running power and necessary data to all lights, doing light rigging, and installing the necessary color and image patterns into the lights. During a day of focus the electricians on call with aim all lights under the direction of the lighting designer.

Film light technician

Also called Set Lighting Technician, Lamp Operator or simply Electrician, the Light Technician on a motion picture set handles all of the electrical needs as well as setting and focusing all of the lighting under the direction of the Gaffer (Chief Lighting Technician).

The light technician's duties include:

  • Distribution of power around the set and support areas (including actor's trailers, portable production offices, catering, etc.).
  • Placement and focus of lighting fixtures for any given scene to be photographed.
  • Managment of power generators.
  • Providing electricity to all support services and departments on the set.

The film set electrical department hierarchy is as follows:

  • Gaffer (Chief Lighting Technician) is the head of the electricians. The Gaffer works directly under the Director of Photography (Cinematographer) to make decisions on the creative lighting on the set (or on location).
  • Best Boy Electrician is the manager of the electrical staff. The Best Boy is, generally, the liason between the set and the equipment truck. The Best Boy manages the equipment, crew paperwork, organizes rentals and returns of special lighting gear needed for specific scenes, sometimes repairs equipment. In the absence of a Generator Operator, the Best Boy manages the main power source(s) on the set; balancing power loads and maintaining safety.
  • Set Lighting Technician (Lamp Operator, Electrician) handles the physical lamps and the stands they go on when they are on flat ground (stands or hardware on uneven ground, mounted to walls, hanging or in any special area are under the control of the Grip department). The electrician lays cable, runs extensions, wires fixtures, sets fixtures and focues fixtures under the direction of the Gaffer.

Home | Up | Assistant director | Best boy | Body double | Boom operator | Camera operator | Cinematographer | Clapper loader | Construction grip | Dialogue editor | Director of audiography | Dolly grip | Executive producer | Film director | Film producer | Focus puller | Foley artist | Gaffer | Grip | Light technician | Location manager | Production designer | Production sound mixer | Property master | Scenic design | Scenographer | Script supervisor | Second unit director | Set decorator | Sound design | Sound editor | Stunt performer

Movies, v. 2.0, by MultiMedia

This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.

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