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Elation Professional “Visualizes” the Future with Capture Design Software
In April 2013, when Elation Professional entered into an agreement with Capture Visualisation AB of Sweden to distribute the company’s well-established Capture lighting design software, it marked the end of Elation’s search for a professional design package to complement the company’s growing product line and the beginning of a rewarding cooperation.
“We’ve been distributing Capture in Europe and the US now for over two years and have built up a strong relationship with the company and a growing number of customers,” states Marc Librecht, sales and marketing manager for Elation Professional in Europe. “As a well-established company with a long-standing and solid reputation, Capture has been an ideal partner for us.”
Universally regarded as easy-to-use visualisation software with a fast learning curve, Capture has found traction in both North America and Europe. Jordan Lake of event planning and services company Stage Production Co. of Birmingham, England, was fully aware of the power of the Capture system, having had a demo at the Elation showroom in Kerkrade, Holland. What took him by surprise though is the speed of the system, which the company has exploited in order to cooperate more closely with their clients.
“We knew having Capture would instantly provide us with the ability to produce high quality renders and artwork for our customers, and detailed plots and specifications for our crew, exactly what it is supposed to do,” Jordan explains. “What we didn’t expect was how fast the design process can be, and this gave rise to what is now our primary use for Capture. Because of the ability to put very impressive designs together extremely quickly we now host live design sessions with our clients. With client and designer on a sofa in front of big plasma screens, the concept design process is now live, real-time, free-flowing and much more creative.”
Popular with lighting professionals around the globe, Capture allows users to virtually design the lighting, truss system, stage and scenery for shows or installation projects in a 3D environment. It includes a vast library of popular manufacturers’ light fixtures, as well as truss and props and can even incorporate video. The software is also a valuable sales tool, allowing designers to put together virtual presentations for clients.
“The simple-to-learn user interface is what got us most interested in this product,” says Marc Librecht. “The learning curve is minimal and allows users to start designing shows right away. There is no annual licence fee and the speed at which updates are made to the library and feature set are among the best in the business. Support of course was important and any initial concerns we had turned out to be negligible. The market response has been great and because Capture is so powerful and easy to use, our customers have taken to it very well.”
Across the pond in the US, touring productions like “The Thorn” and Gabriel Iglesias’ “Unity Through Laughter” tour were designed on a Capture system, and the software has been an important tool in designs for permanent installations across the country. Victor Fable, one of the US’s most sought-after lighting designers for television, with credits like “The Rich Eisen Show”, "Survivor", "Guitar Center Sessions" and "America's Best Dance Crew" to his name, spent years buying and trying various visualisers: “But all of them ended up falling short of my expectations,” he says. “Then along came Capture Argo. After a few hours of playing with the program, it became clear Argo is exactly what my office needed. It's incredibly simple to import Sketch Up files, by far the most commonly used program by set and production designers. Argo is a great addition to any lighting designer’s arsenal. It’s the go to item when it's time to take designs to the next level.”
Capture is also a tool that Elation uses for its own internal needs such as booth designs for trade shows and company showrooms in both the US and Europe, as well as in daily cooperation with dealers to create design layouts for their customers’ projects. Elation Europe’s Dennis Bruynseels, who uses Capture on an almost daily basis, says: “During the design phase of our trade show booths we use Capture Argo to create a number of designs that we think will work. After we’ve finalised our choice we’re able to make quick changes if needed. The ability to make such fast changes is a big advantage of Capture. We also use it for the trainings we provide for Emulation, Emulation PRO and the HedgeHog 4E. We design a stage for our customers where all tools are included in the design to show all of the features of the lighting desks. At the moment we have it in our showroom connected to Emulation PRO and soon we will use it with the HedgeHog 4E to show customers how both desks work.”
In the US, Elation’s Esteban De La Torre-Alva uses Capture on a regular basis to plan trade shows including the 2014 LDI booth, which won an award for Best Large Booth. He also uses it to help dealers render projects, most recently on the 2015 World Armenian Entertainment Awards. “The Capture team is great to work with,” he states. “They are always listening to customer feedback and implementing changes based on those needs and requests. And support for the software is outstanding, usually getting a same-day response to any questions or issues. The learning curve on Capture is very quick, ensuring that you don’t have to be a CAD expert to use the software. It’s very easy to get a quick run-down and start designing shows of your own, which is just what you want with lighting design software.”
21st September 2015
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