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Prelite Studios and New Sketchfab Tool Help Boston Scientific Previsualize Show at Moscone Convention Center

When Boston Scientific held a corporate event with entertainment as part of a recent trade show at San Francisco’s Moscone Convention Center, lighting designer Jeff Johnson opted to use Prelite Studios’ previsualization services to make the most of very limited time on site.

Johnson, a longtime Prelite customer, worked on the project for the Chicago office of Lightswitch. BI Worldwide was the event production company with Amy Oriani producer. “Our biggest issue was that we had to load in at 9 pm Monday, there were rehearsals at 10 am on Tuesday and the show was slated for 6 pm that night. There was no time for any programming at the Moscone. Thanks to Prelite we were able to come in on Tuesday, update the focus positions of about 120 moving lights and away we went!”

Prior to the show Adam Rechner set up the Prelite system at San Francisco lighting company Island Creative Management where he sat down with Johnson and local IA programmer Dave Juarez to build the show.

Even before everyone assembled for the Prelite session Johnson took advantage of Sketchfab, a new tool in the Prelite toolbox. Sketchfab publishes and shares 3D models, enables files to be displayed in the WebGL browser and permits the user to interactively view files and adjust renderings with a multi-material editor.

“The set was one giant screen about 80 feet wide,” Johnson recalls. “One of our concerns was that all of the fixtures were out of the way of the projectors. By using Sketchfab we could make sure that the lights were out of the projection cone when we moved in. Prelite told us Sketchfab would be quick and easy, and it was. They emailed me a LINK, I opened it, flew around the lights to identify any potential problems then sent the file to the technical director, Walter Ahlbrand, to check out. It was cool for all of us to see the same thing online.”

Johnson notes that the two-hour Boston Scientific show included several hundred cues and play ons and play offs for an array of performers, including an opera singer and a string quartet, whose acts were punctuated by panel discussions.

“Using Prelite ultimately gave the client and production company a better looking show,” he says. “They were very happy with the results. They liked the fact that when they walked in Tuesday morning we were ready for rehearsal. No time wasted.”

About Prelite

Prelite was founded in San Francisco February 2000 by Tom Thompson and Norm Schwab as a place for lighting designers and programmers to use technologies to previsualize lighting projects. Its success led to the launch of Prelite NY in June 2001 by Kim Grethen and Rodd McLaughlin. The bicoastal company provides studios where previsualization and creativity take center stage away from the distractions and interruptions of a chaotic work environment and where clients save time and money and minimize stress. Prelite also offers on-site previsualization services for those who prefer the convenience of working at the venue. For more information, visit www.prelite.com or contact Thomas Thompson at 415-883-7727.

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