Scharff Weisberg provided two Main Light Industries’ Soft-LED/Scrim panels as a backdrop for video imagery at the Infor conference, a conclave held in Orlando by the world’s third-largest provider of enterprise software.
The drapery product is made of heavy-duty woven fabric backed by a removable Velcro liner, which permits projection, lighting, and scenery elements behind it. The scrim allows a three-dimensional look on a stage or set and can accept any video signal, ideally from a media server. It comes in an 8x33-foot configuration and is lightweight, easy to pack, and easy to set up. The tri-color surface mount LEDs are 4x4-inch resolution.
“We built a proscenium-type opening with a live band upstage which we wanted to fade in and out,” explains production designer Andy Warfel of Andy Warfel Environment Design. “We were looking at newer technology and discovered that Scharff Weisberg had Soft-LED/Scrim. It’s ideal for large venues with great viewing distances, and we had a large thrust stage in a ballroom with an audience of 2,000 wrapped around three sides. We installed the LED/Scrim between the band in the back and the talking heads in front with a trip rig to pull it up when needed.
“The cool thing about the product is that it’s very flexible; it combines a techno background with scrim-like properties so it can do bleed-through effects,” Warfel continues. “The Soft-LED/Scrim was easy to set up and turned out to be the best solution for what we wanted to accomplish visually. Very low res, moving imagery—graphic eye candy, stock shots of water, flags, fire, organic textures—looked great on it. I’d use it again in a heartbeat.”
“Custom imagery was sourced from a Maxedia media server which fed the Scrim Panel front-end processing. Special mapping software within the front-end electronics facilitates the pixel to LED translation,” explains Armando Acevedo, a lead LED tech at Scharff Weisberg. “From there the signal is converted, sent to the touring racks via Ethernet, and eventually distributed to the Scrim Panels.”
The production company was TKG in Chicago, IL. The executive producer was Shalyn Walsh. Tony Seikman of Durango, Colorado-based The Wit Company was the technical director. John Featherstone of Lightswitch was the lighting designer.