July 25, 2024


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Taking the Right Steps For a Lighting Director Career

What Does A Lighting Director Do On Tour? - Don't Shit On The Bus

In case you didn’t know, lighting directors are one the most crucial individuals in the entertainment industry and without their expertise on board, there are so many things we could not have achieved. 

Understanding Lighting Directors 

In simple terms, lighting directors are creative individuals who work on a number of color creation, texture, and mood creating processes that are utilized as 3D theatrical spaces. They make use of a wide variety of lighting and effects to focus their attention on various actions and work towards improving lightwork in studios shows and broadcasts. 

They create plans regarding the details of the set or shots that will be lit in order to create right effects for the production. This also includes selecting different types of lights and positioning them in the right places – from laser and spotlights to gobos and smoke effects. 

So if that is something that piques your interest, learning how to get into that career can be made easier if you approach professionals in the field – a prime example being none other than Richard Westlein himself. 

For many years now, Richard Westlein has been known to be a highly acclaimed Norwegian American lighting director, who has also worked on many other career roles such as being a television cameraman, freelance screenplay writer, musician, actor, and world traveler who also founded a broadcast-quality field video production company called Jupiter Video Inc. in 1990. 

As a professional who has been a part of the professional world for many years now, many people have known his off-Broadway theatrical productions, including Cafe LaMama and the freelance screenplay he would write for several indie predictions, such as the ‘Adventures in a Limbo’ and ‘Fragmented Feature Dream.’

For someone who has worked on a number of different works within the entertainment sector for more than four decades, he somehow managed to keep his real passion alive to this day – writing. He has continued to keep researching and is currently working on his self-published work in the making. 

And since he is known to be the best of the best when it comes to his lighting work in various film productions, here are a few steps he has shared to help you navigate your own path as a lighting director. Some of the first few steps include:

  • Getting an apprenticeship: This is probably the best way you can learn on the job, earn money and make connections with professionals in the field before you actually take things solo. 
  • Volunteer work: Some people prefer volunteering first to see if they are any good as they think. If you want to test out your skills too, you can always help out with lighting at local events or theatrical productions. 
  • Getting a degree: Technically, you do not need to have a specific degree to get into this career but it really helps in making you good at your craft and finding better opportunities to work with all kinds of influential people in the entertainment industry.