Lighting designer Miro Hrg from top Croatian rental company Promo Logistika chose Robe BMFL Spots, CycFX8s, LEDWash 600s and MMX WashBeams to light the main conference plenary session for the Microsoft WinDays 2017 conference, staged at the Valamar Rubin Hotel in the beautiful historical city of Poreč in Istria.
The four day event comprised a series of lectures, seminars, networking and interactive sessions aimed at Windows developers and administrators and involved two locations – the Rubin Hotel just outside the city centre and at the Valamar Isabella Island Resort on the picturesque Island of Saint Nicolas in Poreč Harbour.
It was the second year running that Miro has designed set and lighting for the WinDays event’s main conference room. The client was extremely happy with last year’s results and this year raised the bar on the production values.
The set design was inspired by Microsoft’s famous coloured windows and other graphic elements like logos and document icons, all referenced to their brand book. The central projection screen was in the shape of a hand holding a tablet reflecting the mobile nature of information consumption.
Miro wanted to create drama and interest for the session rather than just have a plain white conference set up, so this was his starting point for the design, which was based on a series of cloth-covered scenic panels and he also had to light for a short performance piece delivered by well-known laser artist, Theo Dari.
The room has a white ceiling and walls so it’s a tricky environment to light if you are trying to be neat and discreet, so Miro took the opposite approach entirely!
He needed to ensure a good balance between the video projection for the presentations and lighting, and in keeping with the colourful and lively feel of the Windows logo, a neat, strong and definite way of lighting the panels.
For the panels he hit on the idea of utilizing 40 x Robe CycFX 8 units, some built into the bases of the various set panels and others positioned on the floor just below as some of the panels were raised off the ground. All of these threw an even wash up the panel surfaces which seamlessly change colour.
“CycFX 8s are the only product that can do the job smoothly and evenly,” he commented and they looked extremely elegant when positioned, as if they were part of the set frames.
“The zoom and tilt functionality makes focusing very easy,” he observes. Utilizing the zoom helped fill the different sized cloths perfectly.
The 12 x LEDWashes were distributed on three overhead trusses and were used to back-light the audience in various colours, with four units reserved for front lighting. Miro likes the zoom and he can get a very nice 5600K white from them which is great for cameras.
Two delay screens left and right of the hall were installed for IMAG camera relay to the back of the venue.
The 14 x MMX WashBeams were used in Beam mode with six rigged on two over-stage trusses helping create some attractive signature looks for the event. Four were on the floor and another 6 on the front truss.
The 12 x BMFL Spots were a bit of a piece de resistance! This is where Miro had the foresight to see that a few rock ‘n’ roll moments … could really help energise everyone in the room!
Four were located on the floor behind the main speaker podium and central screen with the rest dotted around the trusses, and they were used extensively for environmental lighting of the space.
Being a white surface some clever application of colour and gobos meant he could cover all of the walls – right to the back - with some interesting looks, bringing a more artistic approach to a conference plenary session.
Four Robe MiniMe’s projected patterns and the Word new file icon onto the delay screens, the video input fed via a Resolume Arena media server and the pan / tilt functions run from the lighting console.
Promo Logisitca also supplied technical production to the other WinDays 17 sites around the town and on the island.
The company is based in Zagreb and has a large Robe rental inventory which they love because it’s reliable, a major consideration for any busy rental company and constantly popular.
Miro has worked there full time for 8 years and is also LD for maverick Croatian rockers Parni Valjak. He has been using Robe regularly in designs for the last three years, specifically since the launch of the BMFL. Promo Logistika was the first company in Croatia to purchase BMFLs, with MMX WashBeams and CycFX 8s also purchased in that first batch of fixtures, which have been followed by further investments, all delivered via Robe’s Croatian distributor, Pula based LAV Studio.
Photos by Louise Stickland